Tag Archives: movies

Soul Food The Sequel

A sequel to the 1997 film Soul Food is in the works.

SoulFoodMovie

The original movie starred Vanessa Williams, Nia Long and Vivica A. Fox. According to The Hollywood Reporter:

The sequel will chronicle the new, millennial generation of the Joseph family. In the age of cell phones and social media, the once-close clan finds themselves disconnected and, without the guidance of the elders who have always held things together, they struggle to rediscover the importance of tradition and family.

The movie will be written by George Tillman who also wrote the screenplay and directed the original film.

This will be interesting.  Soul Food is one of my favorite movies.  I also loved the tv series which premiered on Showtime three years after the movie was released.

Music Monday- For The Love of Money/Living for the City

For some reason I keep telling myself I need to watch New Jack City again.  I have the dvd but I haven’t watched the movie in about 5 years.  The movie was really good but so was the soundtrack. One of my favorite songs on the soundtrack is For The Love of Money/Living For The City featuring Queen Latifah, Troop and Levert.  The movie New Jack City was released in 1991 and starred Wesley Snipes, Ice-T, Allen Payne, Chris Rock and Judd Nelson.

NewJackCitymovie

Released during the new jack swing era the New Jack City soundtrack had some great music featuring various r&b and hip hop artists.

NewJackCitysoundtrack

Sister Act remake

The 1992 film Sister Act is getting a remake.  Whoopi Gooldberg starred in the original Sister Act and Sister Act 2:  Back in the Habit.

sister_act

I guess Hollywood really is out of ideas.   Why are movies that were originally released during the 1990’s getting remade?  Sister Act isn’t the only movie getting a remake.  The Craft which was released in 1996 is also getting a remake.  The original starred Fairuza Balk, Robin Tunney, Rachel True and Neve Campbell.

The “Sister Act” remake is just one in a stream of remakes that Hollywood has in the works. Last month, we learned that the 1996 cult-classic “The Craft,” would get a modern makeover, and of course there is “Blade Runner,” “Gremlins,” “Police Academy,” “It” and not one, but two “Ghostbusters,” reboots. (At least one of those movies will include an all female cast, which is you know, something different).

Gremlins and Ghostbusters? Did creativity go out the window in Hollywood? Seems like Hollywood was always coming up with new ideas during the 80’s and 90’s. Nowadays it’s like pick a movie from the 80’s or 90’s, rework the original story and bam you have a 80’s or 90’s classic remade for the 21st century.  I guess in the next year or so we will hear about remakes for Pulp Fiction, The Matrix and The Silence of the Lambs 😦

How Many Classic Black Films Have You Seen

I took this quiz at Buzz Feed called How Many of These Classic Black Movies Have You Seen?  I’ve seen 84 out of the 100 films listed.  Not bad.

Now I wouldn’t call all of the movies listed black movies.  A couple of the movies only had one or two black actors in it. And there are some really good films with an all black cast that are missing.  Maybe they weren’t considered classic films to the people who created the quiz.

Anyway check out the quiz here and see what kind of score you receive.

Zombies 101

The Washington Post has a very interesting article about a new course being offered at the University of Baltimore. The course titled Media Genres: Zombies is being taught by Arnold Blumberg who co-wrote the book Zombiemania80 Movies To Die For.

Exploring the undead: University of Baltimore to offer English class on zombies

By Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Is “Night of the Living Dead” a simple zombie film or a subtle antiwar statement? Precisely when did viral pandemic supplant nuclear radiation as the lead cause of zombification? And which sort of animated dead has the greater potential to frighten: shambler or sprinter?

Those questions and others will be laid to rest — and then gruesomely revivified — in a new 300-level course at the University of Baltimore titled “Media Genres: Zombies.”

Arnold Blumberg, a lifelong enthusiast of popular culture in general and zombie films in particular, is among the first university professors to devote an entire semester to study of the reawakened dead. His course, and recent offerings at Columbia College and Georgia Tech, share a common interest in the zombie movie as expression of zeitgeist.

Zombies have clawed their way to the center of popular culture over the past decade in a series of big-budget mainstream films. There was “28 Days Later,” a 2002 British production that revived the genre with hip London zombies that were supremely athletic if not, strictly speaking, dead. And “Dawn of the Dead,” a 2004 remake of a George A. Romero classic. And “Shaun of the Dead,” the definitive satire. And “Zombieland,” the slightly less-definitive satire.

I’ve seen Night of the Living Dead, the original Dawn of the Dead and 28 Days Later which stars Naomie Harris.

Blumberg is curator of Geppi’s Entertainment Museum, a shrine to popular culture at Baltimore’s Camden Yards. He has degrees from the University of Baltimore and the University of Maryland Baltimore County and co-wrote the book “Zombiemania,” a scholarly interest possibly surpassed only by his love for the venerable British science-fiction series “Dr. Who”. He teaches a UMBC course on the comic book as literature.

“Zombiemania” examines 80 zombie movies “to die for.” The zombie course covers a mere 16 “classic” titles, from the 1932 Bela Lugosi vehicle “White Zombie” through 2009’s “Zombieland,” the highest-grossing zombie film to date.

I haven’t seen Zombieland but I will be adding it to my Netflix queue.

You can read more about the course that’s offered by Mr. Blumberg at the  University of Baltimore website.  This sounds like such a cool course 😉

For Colored Girls

A picture of the cast of Tyler Perry’s For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf has been released.

I first saw the picture in the current issue of Essence Magazine. The film is one of those once in a blue moon releases that features black actresses in starring roles. The cast includes Kerry Washington, Anika Noni Rose, Whoopi Goldberg, Thandie Newton, Janet Jackson, Loretta Devine, Phylicia Rashad, Kimberly Elise and Tessa Thompson.

The movie is based on the play by Ntozake Shange.  The play has appeared on and off Broadway.  For Colored Girls was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play and won an Obie Award in 1977.

Tyler Perry wrote, produced and directed the movie. And that’s where the controversy begins. When it was first announced that this movie would be in Tyler Perry’s hands some folks weren’t happy. Some black folks have a problem with Tyler’s films so they’re expecting the worse with For Colored Girls. Lionsgate, which is releasing the film has changed the release date from January 2011 to November 2010.  Looks like Lionsgate is thinking about awards season.

RIP Vonetta McGee

Actress Vonetta McGee passed away on July 9.  The cause of death was cardiac arrest.

Vonetta appeared in what many folks called back on the 70’s blaxploitation pictures including Blacula, Shaft in Africa and Hammer. Vonetta also starred in Thomasine and Bushrod, The Eiger Sanction and Detroit 9000.

Vonetta was married to actor Carl Lumbly and she is survived by Carl, their son Brandon, her mother, Alma McGee, three brothers, Donald, Richard and Ronald McGee and a sister, Alma McGee.

Vonetta McGee, Film and TV Actress, Dies at 65
By MARGALIT FOX

Vonetta McGee, a film and television actress originally known for blaxploitation pictures like “Blacula,” “Hammer” and “Shaft in Africa,” died on July 9 in Berkeley, Calif. She was 65 and a Berkeley resident.

The cause was cardiac arrest, said Kelley Nayo, a family spokeswoman.

In “Blacula” (1972), Ms. McGee portrayed the love interest of Mamuwalde (William Marshall), an African prince who, after an ill-fated trip to Transylvania centuries earlier, re-emerges in modern Los Angeles as a member of the thirsty undead.

Reviewing the film in The New York Times, Roger Greenspun called Ms. McGee “just possibly the most beautiful woman currently acting in movies.”

In “Hammer” (1972), Ms. McGee appeared opposite Fred Williamson in the tale of a young black prizefighter. In “Shaft in Africa” (1973), the third installment in the private-eye series starring Richard Roundtree, she played an emir’s daughter.

Ms. McGee’s other films include “The Kremlin Letter” (1970); “Detroit 9000” (1973); “Thomasine & Bushrod” (1974); and “The Eiger Sanction” (1975), directed by and starring Clint Eastwood.

Lawrence Vonetta McGee, named for her father, was born in San Francisco on Jan. 14, 1945. While studying pre-law at San Francisco State College, she became involved in community theater. She left college before graduating to pursue an acting career.

According to a Los Angeles Times article, Vonetta McGee wasn’t fond of the term blaxploitation.

McGee was no fan of the “blaxploitation” label that was attached to many of the films featuring black casts in the ’70s.

That label, she told The Times in 1979, was used “like racism, so you don’t have to think of the individual elements, just the whole. If you study propaganda, you understand how this works.”

Although The Times reported that McGee “calls herself one of the lucky graduates of the black-film genre,” she pointed out that there was a difference between someone like Diana Ross and other potentially marketable black actresses.

“She has had the luxury of a studio behind her,” McGee said. “This is where a lot of us fell short. We all needed a certain amount of protection. But we were on our own.”

RIP Vonetta McGee.

Happy New Year and other things

I’m late but Happy New Year!!!  Hope everyone is having a great holiday season. I’ve been off from work this past week.   I spent my week either running around doing errands, doing some house cleaning or just chilling out and watching movies such as Revolutionary Road, Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, Rush Hour, Wall Street and The Stratton Story just to name a few. Right now I’m watching the original The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974).

I’ve been enjoying my time off from work but it’s been cold as heck outside.  Yesterday and today we had some serious winds.  We had a huge snowstorm a couple of weekends ago.  And it was nice being off from work that Monday before Christmas. Uncle Sam rarely shuts down due to snow.  It’s gotta be major for a shutdown.

As you’ve noticed I haven’t been doing much blogging in the past few months.  To be honest I just haven’t been in a blogging mood despite everything going on lately including Tiger Woods and his hoochies and those oh so dreadful Washington Redskins.

For the past week I’ve been trying to decide if I want to buy a usb turntable so I can download my albums and 12 inch singles on my pc.  There’s just so much music I could be listening to on my mp3 player that’s sitting there in album land. I was hanging around Amazon.com a couple of days ago when I saw an album by a group who’s song I loved back in the 80’s.  The song is called Somebody and it’s by a group called Brilliant. They’re a British group who really didn’t make it big here in the U.S.  But Somebody is such a cool song that I bought the 12 inch single when it was released back in the day.  This is an example of songs that I could be listening to on my mp3 player.

Behind the scenes at Netflix

I read an interesting article about how things work at Netflix.  This article talks about the distribution center in Nashville, TN.

netflix

Netflix’s Nashville center feeds demand for movies
Crew of just 18 handles 24,000 discs every day

By Wendy Lee
THE TENNESSEAN

Before dawn, the workers gather in a nondescript office building. Trucks have arrived from the post office, ready to dump tens of thousands of DVDs sealed in bright red envelopes.
Advertisement

But it doesn’t take an army to deal with more than 24,000 DVD and Blu-ray discs per day that need to be opened, filed away, and redistributed to other expectant movie fans.

It’s here, at Nashville’s Netflix distribution center, where a crew of just 18 sorts through the discs and staffs equipment to scan and stuff them into fresh red envelopes, address them and send them on to customers across Middle Tennessee and the Bowling Green, Ky., area.

Despite a declining economy and increased competition from DVD rental machines in supermarkets and online, Netflix says its business is growing in Nashville and nationwide, and the company recently granted The Tennessean a rare chance to take a look inside its distribution center and study operations.

The Nashville facility opened in 2007 and is one of 58 such plants across the United States. The Los Gatos, Calif.-based business lets customers rent and swap (as well as stream) films and TV shows for a monthly fee.

While checking my emails yesterday I noticed that Netflix received the latest movies I mailed Friday morning and sent out the next group yesterday. I was surprised cause they didn’t use to send out movies and emails during the weekend. Apparently they’ve made some changes.

Check out the entire article here.

Texting in the movie theater

I had a good laugh last week reading John Kelly’s column in the Post about the lack of movie theater etiquette especially when it comes to texting.  I definitely feel his pain on this one. I’ve always had problems with folks talking on the phone in the movie theater. That’s one of the reasons why I don’t go to the movies that often.  Years ago I use to go to the movies at least two to three times a month.  I’ve slowed down to a point where the last film I saw in a movie theater was Why Did I Get Married? And when did that come out? I believe fall of 2007. Yes it’s been that long.   I prefer the comfort of watching movies at home compared to listening to phone conversations and seeing bright lights lit up on cellphone screens while folks text themselves to death in the movie theater.

The unholy union of the movie projector and the cellphone is the latest irritation, not because of people who talk on the phone during a film but because of people who text on it. Almost every time I’ve been at the movies recently, someone has been reading or writing a text on his or her phone, the bright little screen burning distractingly at the periphery of my vision, like some annoying floater shining in the vitreous humor of my eyeball.

I’ve even noticed it at the AFI Silver Theatre, not the sort of place that attracts unruly teens who shout back at the characters. When I saw “The Soloist” last week, a gentleman sitting alone a few rows in front of me spent the first third of the film consulting his phone, its tiny glowing screen competing with Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Foxx on the big glowing screen.

You see what I mean?

Texting during a movie is rude for a couple of different reasons. There’s the aforementioned distraction — the human brain is now wired to zoom in on any and all screens in view — but there’s also the message that it sends: This movie bores me, says the texter. The rest of you morons may be able to suspend disbelief, convincing yourselves that despite sitting in a dark room clutching a $5 soda and a $5 bag of popcorn you’re really on the Starship Enterprise or in a secret chamber underneath the Vatican. Not me. I’m wired to the outside world.

If a person feels that texting is more important than watching a movie with the morons then why in the hell did they pay to see the movie in the first place!!!!!!!

For me, another problem is that My Lovely Wife gets even more irritated by movie-texting (“mexting”?) than I do. That means I have to worry about her. How much will she embarrass me with her Charles Bronson-style vigilantism? During a recent high-school band concert (it happens there too, and in live theater performances) she walked down to a teenage girl and whispered, in a voice that I’m sure was honey on sharpened steel: “I’m sorry, your iPhone is very distracting. Can you turn it off, please?”

The girl grunted some sort of assent, lowered the phone on her lap about a millimeter then continued to tap away at it.

I convinced my wife that rather than reenact “Death Wish,” we should just move seats. But you can’t always do that, especially when texters are spread throughout the theater like fireflies on a summer’s night.

You see I don’t blame his wife. Rude folks who text during a movie deserve some Bronson style vigilantism.  Why are they sitting in a movie theater in the first place?  If folks are that bored then they should go to the park and text their life away without bothering others.

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