Lee Daniel’s new film The Butler is the number one film for two weeks in a row. The box office for The Butler is also solid earning over $52 million dollars. However, I am not interested in seeing The Butler because it is basically a black male version of The Help. These race movies are big box office for Hollywood, the Help was a huge box office hit two years ago.
Hollywood has an extremely myopic perspective about the black life experience and it is all about money.
The narrative is, the black life experience is ONLY ABOUT RACE. The commercials tell me I am supposed to see The Butler, because I am black. However, I am not African American, I am a black Canadian, and I’ve seen my fair share of black films that revolve around racism. It is tired, boring, and I am sick of it!
Another film, I won’t be seeing in the fall is Idris Elba’s biopic about Nelson Mandela. There have been several movies already made about Nelson Mandela the famous South African civil rights leader. However, I am fatigued, and I am exhausted watching another boring movie about race. How many films can Hollywood possibly release about Nelson Mandela?
Why hasn’t anyone made a movie about the struggle of black gays and lesbians in South Africa? Why are all the films released about African people always about the black heterosexuals? Why can’t a black dramatic film be made about black people that does not REVOLVE AROUND THE ISSUE OF RACE? It is so derivative, and so tired.
According to the ideology of Hollywood filmmakers, black dramatic films must revolve around race and be about two points in history slavery and the civil rights movement! If there is a movie set in the present about a black person it involves race such as the film Fruitvale Station.
This is BORING! Yes, I said it IS BORING! Yes, I know racism is a serious problem in society, and black people still struggle. However, I am also cognizant as a black man, that I don’t just think about being black every single minute of my life. Isn’t there more to the black life experience than just RACE? Seriously, can’t a screenwriter or filmmaker make a movie about black people that doesn’t revolve around the past? What about life right NOW IN THE PRESENT?
For instance, one area of black film that is ignored is the issue of homosexuality in the black community. Only indie films such as Brother To Brother which was released almost a decade ago dealt with gay black men.
In black cinema, there are numerous films that could be made revolving around black gays and lesbians from the past. However, black films have a tendency to downplay the homosexuality of black queer icons. For example, Lorraine Hansberry the playwright who became famous for her 1959 play A Raisin In The Sun, is a lesbian. It is well known, that Hansberry wrote for the lesbian publication The Ladder in the 1950s. However, how many people know Hansberry was gay? I hear there is an indie biopic being made about Hansberry life, but will this biopic explore the fact she was a black lesbian?
There is a paucity of films being created about black gays and lesbians. I heard there was supposed to be a film made about E Lynn Harris first novel Invisible Life. Tracy Edmonds was supposed to produce the film yet according to the black film blog Shadow & Act Tracy Edmonds is no longer producing the film. E Lynn Harris mother sued Proteus Spann a man who has the rights to all of Harris books. A LA judge sided with Spann and he states he is going to make a film adaptation of Harris novel Not A Day Goes By. However, a film still has not been released yet about black gay men.
Rodney Evans a gay African American filmmaker does have an indie film out called The Happy Sad. However, how many black people are actually going to watch this film? There are no high profile black actors in the film.
Two years ago Dee Rees film Pariah was released, but the film’s box office was luke warm it didn’t even earn $1 million dollars. I believe more black films should be made around issues such as homosexuality because they move beyond JUST RACE. Pariah was a very interesting film, because it dealt with the struggle of a young black teen lesbian coming out of the closet.
There is a film adaptation of the erotic writer Zane’s best selling book Addicted, and I am interested in seeing the movie. However, I am also concerned, because there haven’t been many black films that explore the issue of sexuality well.
Hollywood needs to understand, the film audience, at least I hope people are thirsty for something new, something different.
Ten years ago, Halle Berry was on the top of the world she made history by becoming the first black woman to win the Oscar for best actress for Monster’s Ball. A decade later Halle Berry’s career is currently in the toilet she is struggling just to get work. Berry’s victory in 2002 was supposed to open the door for women of colour in Hollywood. High profile black actresses Vanessa Williams, Queen Latifah, and Angela Bassett all turned down the female lead in Monster’s Ball. In fact, in 2002, Angela Bassett told Newsweek Magazine that Berry’s character Leticia Musgrove was a “prostitute”.
It might be difficult for people who are not black to understand the anger and disappointment blacks had with Halle Berry. There was a huge uproar and backlash against Berry for appearing in Monster’s Ball. Berry was criticized by many blacks and her popularity with black audiences declined dramatically. A common complaint among blacks is blunt, why did the first black woman to win best actress have to screw a white man in order to win? Would Hollywood allow Nicole Kidman, Angelina Jolie, Charlize Theron, or Jennifer Aniston to have an explicit sex scene with a black man and win an Academy Award?
Many black people objected to the explicit sex scene Berry had with white actor Billy Bob Thorton because they felt the film promoted the licentious black whore stereotype. When Berry’s character Leticia Musgrove screamed the line “make me feel good” baring her breasts and nude body this upset many African-Americans.
The Monster’s Ball sex scene also alludes to white male dominance over black women and to the horrors of slavery where black females were raped by white men.
The pornographic scene in Monster’s Ball was similar to a rape scene and not a loving or romantic film scene.
Black women are consistently stereotyped as being lascivious, and sexually available for the disposal of men. Young black female pop stars such as Rihanna and Beyonce promote the black jezebel image with their sexually explicit music videos! Turn on MTV, BET, or Much Music, and the viewer will see young black women dancing seductively in tight clothing this promotes a disturbing negative image of black females.
Why didn’t Angela Bassett win the Oscar for her incredible performance in the 1993 Tina Turner biopic What’s Love Got To Do With It? Why did a black woman have to take her clothes off in order to win the best actress Oscar? Was Berry character Leticia Musgrove the jezebel?
In the 1982, the groundbreaking black feminist classic book All The Women Are White, All The Blacks Are Men, But Some Of Us Are Brave, black feminists argues black women are still placed into sexist categories. A black actress is either the maid, or the whore, but she is never depicted on the silver screen as a three dimensional human being. Where are the movies with black women in leading roles as doctors, teachers, police women, firefighters, writers, lawyers, politicians, bankers, or dentists?
Last year, the success of summer hit The Help received some negative press in the black community because of the black mammy stereotype. Kathryn Stockett’s novel The Help is considered a feminist classic by mainstream white feminists. However, in the novel and the film the central theme of the novel is about Skeeter a young white woman’s evolution and change. The black female characters Minny, and Aibileen are just shadows to Skeeter.
Octavia Spencer won the best supporting actress Oscar for The Help but there was apathetic support in the black community. The reason is, despite Spencer’s strong performance in The Help she won an Oscar for being a white woman’s maid! Spencer’s best supporting actress win is not progress because it proves Hollywood is still incredibly racist against black actors.
Over seventy years ago, another black actress Hattie McDaniel also won an Oscar for being a maid in the racist film Gone With The Wind. Octavia Spencer’s victory cemented that fact Hollywood still places black women into restrictive racist and sexist binaries.
Meanwhile, ten years after Halle Berry’s victory she was unable to capitalize off her success. Time will tell if Octavia Spencer can maintain her success after winning the Oscar. For a short period of time Berry’s career was successful.
In December 2002, Halle starred with British actor Pierce Bronson and the film grossed $431 million dollars worldwide. In 2003, Halle was the star of the horror flick Gothika and the movie was a huge hit earning $141 million worldwide. Halle cemented her A list status by proving she can headline a movie by herself. However, in 2004 Berry’s career hit rock bottom with the disappointing performance in the film Catwoman. Despite winning an Academy Award she wasn’t the first choice which was Ashley Judd. Judd turned down the role for Catwoman and Halle won the part.
On various internet websites such as IMDB.COM, some fans were disappointed that a black actress obtained the lead role. The budget for Catwoman was $100 million dollars but the worldwide box office was only $82 million. The mainstream media attacked Halle for taking on the role. Although Catwoman was a disappointment, white actresses such as Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Aniston, Charlize Theron, Angelina Jolie also have numerous bombs in their careers.
The dilemma for Halle Berry was, since she was the only A list black actress any failure was used to justify the myopic belief black actresses are not profitable. However, the truth is Hollywood doesn’t know what do with a beautiful, talented, black actress.
White actresses also have white skin privilege therefore they are allowed more opportunities to obtain leading lady film roles. An A list white actress such as Nicole Kidman can have a series of bombs yet she still have the offers for leading lady roles!
Halle Berry’s career as an A list actress was over after Catwoman she never was offered the same kind of roles her white female contemporaries get.
The Hollywood system still favours white women over women of colour and this is a fact. Mainstream magazines such as Vanity Fair, Vogue, Entertainment Weekly, Variety, New York Times, LA Times, promotes young white actresses over women of colour. Television shows such as E Talk, Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood, also have a prominent role of being a representation for white beauty.
Since Hollywood is a racist dream factory, the white woman is still placed on the pedestal as the ultimate beautiful woman. The image of a woman in the pop culture that is successful, talented, and attractive is still the white female. Women of colour rarely ever obtain the high-profile film roles despite being as talented, hardworking or beautiful. Halle Berry has complained in numerous media interviews that she receives the scraps the crappy film roles that an A list white actress doesn’t want.
Although Berry has a legitimate complaint that she is treated unfairly compared to the A list white actresses, she still had better opportunities than any black woman in Hollywood history. Berry was paid $14 million dollars for Catwoman, she also has endorsements with Revlon cosmetics, and she has her own perfume line.
Berry has also made some poor choices she honestly believed after she won the best actress Oscar for Monster’s Ball that she could cross over to white America.
The dilemma for Halle Berry is, although she is half white she still did not connect with a mainstream audience. Berry attempted to reach the mainstream with her roles in films such as Things We Lost In A Fire, Perfect Stranger, Frankie & Alice. Berry’s recent film the pathetic and dismal shark movie Dark Tide failed to reach an audience.
The quandary for Berry is, she is an aging sex symbol although she looks great and is physically fit she is also forty-five years old. Hollywood is a sexist business and judged by their age and not their talent. Men are allowed to age in Hollywood gracefully. For instance, Denzel Washington is fifty-seven years old yet since he is a male he still has the opportunities to obtain the high-profile film roles. Will Smith is forty-three years old and Jamie Foxx is forty-four yet their careers are more successful than Halle Berry’s career. Although black men encounter racism in Hollywood they still benefit from male privilege because they are men.
All women in Hollywood are treated to the unfair misogynist double standard that they can only be successful for an ephemeral period of time. Once an actress regardless of her race reaches the magical age of forty the roles start to dry up. Meryl Streep is the exception to the rule but for most actresses regardless of their talent they are replaced by younger actresses.
Since black women encounter discrimination in relation to their race and gender Halle Berry’s decline is incredibly sad. Unfortunately for Berry, Hollywood replaced her with younger black actresses such as Zoe Saldana, Kerry Washington, Jennifer Hudson, and Meagan Good.
Halle Berry’s contemporaries such as Queen Latifah, Vivica A Fox, Taraji P Henson, Sanaa Lathan, and Gabrielle Union are still working. One problem which Halle Berry needs to address if she wants to make a comeback is to make movies which appeal to the black female audience. Tyler Perry is successful because his movies have reached black women which is a lucrative market which mainstream Hollywood tends to ignore. Black women want to see other black women fall in love, have romantic relationships, and appear in exciting and interesting movies. Queen Latifah has not forgotten the black female audience and this is the reason why her career is currently more successful than Halle Berry’s career.
If Halle Berry wants to make a successful comeback she needs to make films which will win back the black female audience. Berry needs to consider making a romantic comedy or a dramatic film which involves romance.
Although, younger South Asian actresses, such as Shilpa Shetty and Aishwarya Rai, are receiving more international media attention. I believe Nandita Das is more talented. Everyone talks about how pretty Shilpa and Aishwarya are, but I firmly believe Nandita Das is a beautiful woman she is stunning! Nandita is very fastidious, she is more of an independent art house actress, and she is respected for her acting abilities. I admire Nandita because she has been able to navigate between Bollywood and Hollywood. I would love to see Nandita in a major blockbuster mainstream Hollywood film that would be amazing!
I think Nandita’s success proves, a darker skinned South Asian actress, can have success in Indian cinema, and international movies. In South Asian cinema, the actresses tend to be fair skinned and have Eurocentric features. Nandita is a beautiful, brown skinned, South Asian woman, and she has a huge audience in India and internationally.
Nandita has a solid career, she has appeared in Indian films and western movies. I remember, the first time I saw Nandita act, she was in Deepa Mehta’s lesbian drama “Fire”. I thought Nandita’s performance was so strong in “Fire” she was very brave to be in the film. There were protests in India and even violence because some South Asian men were enraged that the movie involved South Asian actresses in a lesbian film. After “Fire” Nandita appeared in the acclaimed film “Earth”. Nandita is such a talented actress she has a new movie out called “Before The Rains”.
“Before The Rains” is set in 1937 India in the state of Kerala. Kerala is a very interesting Indian state because it is a matriarchal society and women are in control not the men. The women in Kerala have the power since literacy and higher education is available for women.
Okay I will admit the plot for “Before The Rains” is a bit derivative. How many times does there have to be a movie about a young beautiful South Asian woman in a doomed marriage? Are South Asian men being stereotyped as being pernicious and abusive to women? I have to admit I yearn to see more movies with South Asian men in more tender roles in Western cinema instead of just being evil husbands.
What is the real issue with the interracial love theme is it to create controversy or to provide texture to the film? I kind of wonder if the screenwriters or producers can think outside of the box a little bit more? Also, how can the stunning Nandita Das be just a maid? The only reason “Before The Rains” is even worth watching is because Nandita Das is in the film if she wasn’t in the movie I wouldn’t care about the film at all. I think Nandita deserves better roles to showcase her talent.
Nandita’s character in “Before The Rains” is a young beautiful South Asian maid Sajani she is in a loveless marriage to a callous South Asian man. Sajani wants more out of her life she desires excitement and pleasure. The Indian husband in “Before The Rains” is evil he beats Sajani after he finds out that she is involved in an interracial love affair with a white man. Sajani falls in love with her white boss LLinus Roche’s character Henry Moores.
The village people find out about Sajani’s interracial affair and all hell breaks loose. The movie was released in North America recently. Also, I have more good news Nandita is directing her first feature film called “In Such Times” I am so excited!
I watched ER a few weeks ago only because I am a fan of the British actress Parminder Nagra. I wish Parminder would get bigger mainstream roles I think she deserves it. It is interesting “Bend It Like Beckham” was such a huge international hit yet Keira Knightley is a big star and Parminder is on ER.
The issue I have is why can’t Parminder have the same opportunities as Keira? Keira is a solid actress and she is very talented but so is Parminder. I would like to see Parminder get some leading lady roles soon.
One movie role Parminder should be the star of is the film “Tulia” about an Indian American lawyer Vanita Gupta. African American actress Halle Berry is the leading lady in the film. Last time I checked Berry is biracial she has European and African heritage she is not South Asian. Vanita Gupta a young South Asian lawyer successfully won the release of 46 African Americans in Tulia Texas on a drug bust.
Shouldn’t the casting of the leading lady be racially accurate? The attitude of Hollywood is South Asian women are “invisible” are “displaced” and not “palatable” for North American audiences. The only reason Halle Berry was chosen for the lead role is due to her celebrity.
The question remains is Halle Berry really a box office draw? “Perfect Stranger”, and “Things We Lost In A Fire” both bombed at the box office. Halle Berry has been most successful recently in ensemble films such as X MEN.
The ideology in Hollywood is African Americans and South Asians “look similar” due to skin tone. Hollywood thinks the public can’t tell the difference between African Americans and South Asians. Since Halle Berry is African American the belief is she can pull off a convincing performance as a South Asian American woman. But is this true? Is this fair to South Asian actresses languishing in secondary roles in Hollywood ? What about the concerns of South Asian people? Is this right to change the race of the leading lady just for profit and business?
Or is this going to be another “A Mighty Heart” all over again? I understand Hollywood wants star power for the movie but choosing Halle Berry for the lead role is deleterious, racist, and incredibly offensive. How many leading lady roles do South Asian actresses get in Hollywood? The answer is zero. Halle Berry should be ashamed of herself she clearly has a huge ego and zero class.
Halle Berry is such an arrogant, selfish, hypocritical, woman she is not South Asian yet she doesn’t mind taking a role meant for a South Asian actress. Halle Berry and her publicity team always market her as the “victim” the public is supposed to feel sorry for her. I am not falling for Halle Berry’s publicity game any longer . Halle knows how hard it is for women of colour to get the leading lady roles yet she doesn’t mind taking on a role that wasn’t meant for her. Halle complains in the media all the damn time about how hard she has it.
Yes, it must be so hard for Halle Berry after all she makes $14 million per movie, multi million dollar endorsements with Revlon & Versace. Halle also receives an incredible amount of mainstream attention compared to other actresses of colour. Halle is also the top actress of colour in Hollywood whenever Hollywood has a major role for a woman of colour Halle gets called first for the role.
I am very disappointed in Halle I believe Parminder should be the star of this movie “Tulia”. “Tulia” should be Parminder’s breakthrough performance she deserves this leading lady role. Parminder has the talent to pull of this very dramatic and intense role if Halle Berry had any class she will drop out of the film. Isn’t it time for another woman of colour to shine in a leading lady role besides Halle Berry?
Meanwhile, Parminder is on television she has a steady gig on ER. Parminder’s character Dr. Neela Rasgotra is the most complex character on the show. Dr. Rasgotra has dealt with the death of her husband, falling in love with a fellow co worker, and trying to maintain her career.
I was on an internet message board the other day and some bloggers actually said Parminder would never make it in Indian Cinema. I responded back saying what about Nandita Das? Nandita Das is a gorgeous woman and talented actress she also has a darker skin tone as well. Nandita has been very successful in both Indian and Western movies. The other bloggers responded back that Nandita Das is an exception to the rule. Is this true? According to the information I have read Parminder is considered “too dark” to be successful in Bollywood. But is this this true of just gossip?
It seems the issue of skin tone racism and beauty standards exist in many communities across the globe. It is well known in the African communities light skinned women are placed on a pedestal compared to darker skinned black women. I have learned in South Asian communities the “lighter skinned” female image is the image that is considered more palatable for Indian film audiences. In Bollywood films the leading male character can be a dark skinned Indian man but the leading lady tends to always have Eurocentric features and lighter skin. Other bloggers also suggested that Parminder is doing the right thing trying to succeed in Hollywood instead of Bollywood.
If you want to watch a dark romantic comedy rent or buy a copy of the 2002 independent film “Secretary” on DVD. Maggie Gyllenhaal shines in the lead role as Lee Holloway. Lee Holloway is a depressed, lonely, suicidal, young woman she recently was released from a mental institution. Lee feels there is a void in her life she has emotions of melancholy and despair. The movie Secretary explores the alienation young adults encounter after graduating from high school. Where does your life go after school ends? How do you find yourself? What is your true identity?
Lee is having a hard time transitioning back to the real world her parents marriage is also on the rocks. Lee is not sure if the real world is where she belongs she doesn’t feel loved. Whenever Lee is unhappy and depressed she mutilates herself with a knife because she believe she deserves to experience the feelings of bitterness and unhappiness. Lee is bored with her life and restless.
Lee meets a young man Peter he is boring and Lee isn’t really interested in him. Lee figures since she’s bored she might as well date Peter since he does give her some affection and attention. Peter doesn’t excite Lee though. Peter asks Lee to marry him and she agrees only because she feels she should. Peter seems like a nice guy but Lee keeps on wondering if they are more exciting men out there? Lee decides she wants a better life and she begins takes a typing course discovering she’s good at it. Lee decides to apply to an secretary job for an attorney Edward Grey.
James Spader’s character Mr. Grey is a recluse, he is also into S&M. Mr. Grey is attracted to Lee the feelings are mutual but Mr. Grey cannot muster the courage to tell Lee that is deeply in love with her. Mr. Grey admonishes Lee for typos and spelling errors and this turns both of them on. Mr. Grey tells Lee to assume certain S&M positions and smacks her behind. Mr. Grey is all about being the dominant man and he wants a secretary to submit to his sexual fantasies. Mr. Lee and Grey don’t have actual intercourse but they play a lot of mind games. Mr. Grey is the aggressor and Lee is in the submissive role. Some feminists are outraged at the movie Secretary because they think the movie is sexist and dehumanizing to women.
Some people might not like Secretary because the movie is extremely sexual and very frank about the issues of sexuality. Mr. Grey has a hard time connecting with women he doesn’t want to have intercourse with Lee but he is sexually aroused when she is submissive. Lee is also turned on by Mr. Grey she masturbates in her bedroom rubbing her fingers between her crotch screaming the words “I’m your secretary!”, “I’m your secretary!”. “I’m your secretary!” over and over again until she has an intense orgasm. Also after Mr. Grey yells at Lee she is turned on and she mastrubates again in the washroom stall touching herself and climaxing again.
Lee is searching for some meaning in her life. Mr. Grey is afraid he will fall in love with Lee and he fires her. Lee becomes upset puts on a wedding dress and engages in a three day hunger strike to prove to Mr. Grey she loves him. I won’t spoil the ending but Secretary is a gritty, wonderful, quirky, dark, romantic comedy.
In the summer of 2004, John Cho and Kal penn finally made their first major breakthrough in Hollywood. Cho and Kal Penn have been working diligently for years often in secondary roles . Cho was most famous for his role in the WB sitcom “Off Centre” and “American Pie”. Kal Penn was known for his role in the teen comedy “Van Wilder.” Finally, John Cho and Kal Penn were given the opportunity to shine in the leading roles of Harold Lee and Kumar Patel in the stoner comedy “Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle”.
Although “Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle ” made $18 million at the box office the movie gained cult status due to DVD sales. Since the DVD sales for the first movie were huge a sequel will be released on April 25th 2008. There is more pressure on Cho and Penn because MTV wants the movie to be at least a moderate box office hit. Hollywood is slowly making progress realizing there is an audience that desires to see Asian American men as leading men in the movies. Cho and Penn certainly have the sex appeal and the talent to cross racial boundaries.
Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle” has received a lot of press because the leads are two young Asian American male actors. John Cho is Korean American and Kal Penn is Indian American. Harold and Kumar are also not nerds they are two intelligent, ambitious, and attractive young men. Cho and Penn definitely are eye candy and have the potential to become Hollywood superstars.
The plot is simple Harold and Kumar are two young Asian American men that are restless, sexually frustrated, and also craving some weed. Harold Lee is a junior analyst at a business firm he is hardworking but also lonely and depressed because he has no love life . Harold is an attractive man, yet he has no self esteem he doesn’t believe he is worthy of true love.
The only woman that showers Harold with attention is a young Asian American female Cindy Kim. Cindy is a student at Princeton University she is also the president of the East Asian club. Cindy is attracted to Harold and she is stereotyped in the movie as a nerd. Harold is nice to Cindy they talk a lot but he’s not interested in Cindy he fears he will have to date an Asian American woman. Harold even says Cindy calls him a “twinkie” yellow on the outside and white in the middle. I do have a problem with the Cindy Kim character why is an Asian American woman stereotyped as just a nerd?
I kind of wish the movie explored Harold’s fascination with Maria a bit more. Maria is depicted in the film as Latina but she clearly is a white hispanic. The writers of Harold & Kumar are white males and they are promoting the racist stereotype that men of colour have an insatiable desire for just white women. Why was Harold so against dating an Asian American woman? What was so wrong with Cindy Kim? Cindy’s kind of cute I didn’t understand what was wrong with Cindy? Is Harold interested in Maria more because she’s from a different culture?
It is easy to understand why Harold would be sexually attracted to Maria she is svelte, sexy, curves in all the right places. I wasn’t sure what to think of the character Maria? Maria hardly has any lines and she appears to just be a sex object for Harold’s sexual desires. By contrast, Cindy Kim is stereotyped as an aggressive, desperate, unattractive, nerdy, Asian student. Is the movie trying to say ambitious women are not appealing to heterosexual men? Why was Cindy Kim such a caricature? I think if Cindy Kim was less of a caricature perhaps this would have been more interesting?
Kumar Patel he is an aspiring medical student he’s a bit more outgoing than Harold and kind of is the leader. One evening after Harold returns from work he and Kumar decide to instead of eating KFC or take out they crave White Castle hamburgers. Kumar appears to be in love with no one except his desire and craving for weed. There is even a funny sequence when Kumar marries a bag of weed although I did cringe when Kumar uses scatological language to describe his “wife”.
Harold and Kumar definitely has some funny moments for instance Neil Patrick Harris plays an extreme role of himself as a womanizing heterosexual drug user. According to media reports Harris was hesitant of taking the role because he first thought the movie was going to make fun of him. The screenwriters actually wrote a role specifically for Harris. Another funny scene is Chris Meloni’s cameo “Freakshow”. “Freakshow” is a Christian man that looks like a grotesque monster out of an old Halloween movie.
Some women may not like “Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle” because the female characters really have no purpose other than being sex objects . There is also female nudity in the movie this might be a turn off for some women as well. I have read in the sequel there will be more balance there will definitely be male nudity so that’s fair. There is also some jokes in the film that may be interpreted by some as homophobia. I didn’t think the movie was homophobic at all. I think the movie was trying to demonstrate that Harold and Kumar have an intense platonic friendship some people may interpret as homoeroticism. There is a really cool scene the Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds is a male nurse. After operating on a patient Reynold’s character starts hitting on Kumar telling him he likes his “chocolate lips”. There is also another scene where Kumar is licking Harold’s face after he passes out.
I think this is perhaps the main weakness in the film. In one scene two female English foreign exchange students talk to Kumar at Princeton and tell him they wouldn’t mind smoking a joint with him. Kumar tells Harold in an explicit manner what he thinks of the two English students. Perhaps Harold and Kumar is a way to peek into the minds of heterosexual men? Harold and Kumar isn’t meant to be a serious film it is a comedy. A part of me felt conflicted watching the film some feminists will not enjoy the crude humor. The sections of the movie I did enjoy is when the film explored the issue of race, racial profiling, becoming independent, and living your own dreams.
Kal Penn, John Cho, and Neil Patrick Harris all say the movie changed their lives and careers. Harris credits the movie for launching his comeback on to television on the CBS show “How I Met Your Mother”. Kal Penn desperately wanted to audition for the male lead in Mira Nair’s “The Namesake”. Cho told Penn about “The Namesake” while filming “Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle”. Penn and Cho attempted to buy the rights to “The Namesake” but learned they were too late. Penn started an aggressive campaign to obtain Nair’s attention but this proved futile. The reason Kal Penn got an audition for “The Namesake” is because Nair’s teen son was a fan of “Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle”. John Cho credits the film for giving him the opportunity to be one of the stars in the new Star Trek film.
Harold and Kumar isn’t rocket science the chemistry between Cho and Penn makes the movie endearing. You sense that Cho and Penn genuinely like each other and get along well. The magic to the film is the fact you are rooting for Harold and Kumar not just to reach White Castle but to gain independence and start to live their lives on their own terms.
I am so excited John Cho is going to be in the new Star Trek movie. The first time I ever saw John on television was when I watched the sitcom called “Off Centre” on the former WB network. I was mesmerized by John’s presence and comic timing. Although John wasn’t the lead I thought he was hilarious and stole the thunder from his co stars.
I can’t wait until next month to see the sequel to Harold and Kumar in April!! John Cho is so sexy! I swear he is so cute! He is tall, handsome, fit, I mean he’s also a solid actor he’s leading man material. I wonder why casting agents never give John the opportunity to shine in a dramatic romantic leading man role?
John just drips with sex appeal he should be a leading man by now. It is nice to see John finally get bigger roles. I definitely want to see John Cho in a serious romantic drama.
Gabrielle Union doesn’t just walk she floats, her megawatt smile, her intelligence, sophistication, talent, beauty, is extraordinary. Gabrielle Union should be a bigger star. Neo Ned, Gabrielle’s controversial film will be released on DVD in May 2007. Visit http://www.neoned.com for more details.