‘Why Did I Get Married Too?’: A Rushed Movie with Little to No Conclusion:

Timing is key in any movie. Let me just say this, I love Tyler Perry and applaud his efforts on sharing a representation of the African American Community in film, but I believe creating quality is more important than just spitting out a movie every other month and missing components of what a movie should contain. I am a fan of Tyler Perry’s stage plays, and I believe that’s where he shines. As far as movies go, he’s got to clean it up a bit.  Although, he did a solid job with ‘A Family That Preys.’ Perry has so much potential, so I’m not writing this because I dislike him; if anything I respect him.  I only want to see a better proportion of the quality of writing and acting. The movie began a bit slow because there wasn’t much dialogue, and there were too many long pauses and breaks between lines. *Note: that’s one indication that the movie was rushed. When it actually did get to the meat of the story, it became too convoluted, and at one point, I thought there was actually going to be some type of esemplastic moment, but there wasn’t. Some say that this was Janet’s movie, which, in essence it was, but as far as acting capabilities go, Jill Scott took that. However, I will give a slight disclaimer: Janet was at a vulnerable state, since the movie was filmed soon after her late GREAT brother, Michael Jackson, passed away. So I give her kudos for even doing the film. Without giving away too much for those who are reading and plan on seeing the film, the story bounces from one event to another without giving a full explanation or conclusion to any of them. For instance, Jill Scott’s character finds herself helping Richard T. Jones’ character. Now, from the looks of it, you’d think there was going to be a cataclysmic result. In turn, there was none, which baffled me and the rest of my analytical crew.

I must say the characters played by Tasha Smith and Michael Jai-White were definitely the comedic relief. I thought their timing was pretty good and quite funnier this time around. We were introduced to their foolery characters in ‘Why Did I Get Married,’ which was a far better film.

The ending was the second indication that this movie was built on just events and no conclusion. It was poorly scripted and needed lots of revisions. I know that Perry can redeem himself, and when he does, I will give my two cents! My only question is why the rush?

Published in: on April 22, 2010 at 2:41 AM  Leave a Comment  

Convergence: No Longer a Theory…

Of course we know the way people access their news has changed. That’s the reality of our industry. But I think there is also an underlining fear that social media is the demise of some newsmakers. I beg to differ only because I believe versatility is needed to remain relevant in this business, as well as to protect the future of journalism. Ethics or writing quality does not have to be compromised because news hole is shrinking. Instead, convergence, no longer just a theory, has become a reality, thus creating opportunity to enhance mediums, including TV.

Last year, I decided instead of holding on to what I didn’t know in the industry, I decided to create an outlet of my own, such as my online radio show, where it gives me a chance to talk about topics that go unnoticed. I even went as far as to landing an unofficial internship with WAMU radio in Washington D.C. I learned how short and accurate I needed to be in creating news worthy stories for online. I’ve taken skills from WAMU and since working at WPGC , it has allowed me to be versatile. I help write and edit copy.

Recently, the Washington DC metro area has dealt with tragic shootings. It has plagued Southeast DC, so to get the community involved, I like to post topics or articles on those type of social outlets just to see how the masses feel. In addition, I’ve recently been asked to do some social media consulting for The Greater Washington Urban League in Washington DC, where I’m developing ways to get vital information about the league on the web, where a lot of communication is happening. It’s a non-profit organization that focuses on housing, education and tends to focus on community engagement. So as a social media consultant, I will make sure people know about grants, the latest information on unemployment and community events. I use Twitter and Facebook to share information as well as to engage people.

Because the organization has a huge conference this summer, I plan on doing an online survey to find out how many people know about the league and ask if they are members of the organization. This is to monitor the engagement and to see how many people really know about the national organization.

Someone in social media should understand that social media has become a major component in news. Most network Television stations now have a Twitter, Facebook as well as Flickr page. In addition, this person should understand the demographics, which is highly important because what the person uses and says to drive the masses interaction will be determined by who are tuning in. Someone working in social media should have a broad idea of news that can be distinguished.

According to David Berkowitz, Senior Director of Emerging Media and Innovation at digital marketing agency 360i, it maybe efficient for a marketer to post the same information on different sites, but is that effective for those viewing it? While he was speaking in terms of marketing, I believe some parts of that pertain to producers.  He’s right, and that’s why it’s important to know your audience. He also noted social media gurus must plan ahead. If they don’t, they risk losing their flow once drastic changes arise, and with social media, everything is always changing. But as I pointed out before, that’s just the reality of the industry.

Specifically, my duty is to be quick when accessing information. In order to make sure I’m efficient, I have to know the news. Those are two essential things I always do. Next, I will keep a log of the latest social media sites, and do research on those in the developmental stages. I will engage in conversation with the audience in reference to breaking news or news that affect the community such as that of the shootings in Southeast DC. Another component, which I’m not sure it would be a duty, but passion about the community is a must. I’m not from DC, but I sympathize with those who live in an area where violence appears to be normal. I then become compassionate about resolving it even if I’m just a small portion of making the difference. I am relevant. I believe I am the person who could take the job and really create something timely, relevant and interesting. All it takes is someone taking that chance.


Published in: on April 6, 2010 at 2:00 AM  Leave a Comment  

My review of “Precious”

I’m going to try not to get on such a huge soapbox, but I have to give my two cents about this movie. I went into this movie knowing I would analyze the movie because I’m pretty analytical when it comes to good movies such as this one. Precious began as an independent film, and what I’m finding out most, Oscar-worthy movies tend to start off that way.

Let me just pause right there…While I believe there is Oscar written all over this movie, I don’t know if any one person deserves the Oscar over the other because everyone was equally brilliant and compelling. From the character, Precious to the character, Ms. Rain, there was great acting. I am most pleased with that of Gibourney Sidibe. This chocolate sister, (this is her first acting gig) brought some straight-up acting–no holds barred. She took us to that place where we wanted to save her from her pain. Without giving so much away to those who are reading and haven’t seen the movie, Sidibe’s character was a victim of every emotion you could possibly name.

The director, Lee Daniels, gave the audience a raw movie that was supposed to leave a lasting affect. I wanted to know if the movie was based on someone real or was it a variation of things. Sapphire who is the author of the book linked to the movie, wrote  Push based on Precious. After Monique had her on her show, Sapphire explained that Precious is based on various young women she met throughout her life. A part of me is glad to know that this wasn’t based off one person, however, there is someone out there in this world who has gone through everything Precious went through in the movie. And that’s why the dynamics of this movie is so awesome.

A friend who read the book said Push was a hard read simply because of the verbiage and the fact Precious had little to no education. Just by watching the movie, I can see how that could have had an affect. There was a big language barrier, but those who watch it will understand and see the validity of the language.

As I was talking to a friend, we discussed the colorism in the movie. A lot of it stood out like a sore thumb. PLEASE STOP READING THIS IF YOU HAVE NOT WATCHED THE MOVIE. Most of the characters who were the antagonist in the movie were darker skinned, while the people who helped Precious were that of a lighter skin tone. Now one might say that it doesn’t matter and that the director was not aware of that, but it can be taken slightly out of context if you look closely. Why was there a pattern like that? Coming from the theatrical background there are reasons for a lot of why characters are chosen to look certain ways. But I digress.

By the end of the movie I wanted to save Precious’ life, not only that, the director gave an ending that you had to refuse because there could have been another way of showing it, but as directors and writers do, they leave the audience to decide their own ending.

Published in: on November 21, 2009 at 9:08 PM  Comments (1)  

Wake-up Call (Plea for Black Hair Care)

good_hairIt’s been a while since I’ve posted any thing, and that’s because I wasn’t pressed to post anything of substance, until now. Here’s some food for thought.

Recently, I went to the movie theater to check out Chris Rock’s documentary “Good Hair,” and while I was not surprised at the specific “findings” I was disappointed at the percentage of Black-owned hair-care franchises. Dudley and Bronner Bros. seem to be at the forefront of it all, but where are all these Black hair-care professionals when it comes to generating weave and overall hair-care products? Why aren’t we supporting our own?

For me, this wasn’t just a movie that was supposed to expose how much Black women spend on their hair or how many Black women where weaves just to maintain what is called “good hair,” this was about exposing how unattached we are to the hair-business sector. According to Dudley’s Founder, Joe Dudley, there are only four other Black-owned hair franchises. That is an appalling amount considering how many African-American women wear weaves and use black hair-care products. Where are the hair professionals who are willing to become business owners instead of watching foreigners sell the products as if they use it?

Thank you, Chris Rock for diving a little deeper and going where the simulation started–India. I applaud Rock’s efforts because he, too, wanted to find out why are extensions Black women wear on their head imported from another country. In India, there is a sacred ceremony where females have all their hair cut and shaved off in honor of their God. Where does the hair go? hmmm … Well the hair is auctioned off to hair suppliers, who again are foreigners, and then sold to generate billions of dollars.

Black women have been wearing weaves for decades, the problem doesn’t lie there because they aren’t going to stop. The question lies is how can we take control of the business and profit from it as Black hair-care providers. Why don’t manufacturers want to sell hair and hair-care products to Black businesses and solely to foreigners. I’m putting it out there but I’m just one voice. It takes passion and the business-minded folks who want to see more of us producing our own. If those salon stylists who were featured in the documentary want to be platform stylists or business entrepreneurs, then this film should be a wake-up call for them to take some action so the number of Black Hair-Care franchises increases.

Published in: on October 12, 2009 at 3:09 AM  Comments (1)  

Saved in a Secular World


As I continue my walk with Christ, I sometimes wonder if my spiritual walk is being compromised. I’ve been saved since I was 13 years old because that’s when I began to take it serious. I always had a relationship with Christ, but it wasn’t until then when I professed His glory and how Magnificent He is. I was literally raised in the church. I sang, praised dance, spoke when I needed to. Never once was I forced to go to church, I always had a desire and always wanted to know more about the Lord. Growing up I never felt that my spiritual walk was ever compromised. It wasn’t until I got older where I started to see other worlds, cultures and values. I went to college, met different people and saw that most of the world doesn’t exactly have a relationship with Christ. They are either what is called “spiritual” or just not religious. This sometimes strikes me as a cop out, a way to say that you don’t follow anything but your own feelings and inclinations, but those inclinations are the Holy Spirit. Yes, I am spiritual and Yes, I am religious and I’m not afraid to say it because, honestly, I don’t feel like there is anything unconventional about it. I’m not a Bible thumper, nor am I a “tell you what to do because it’s in the Bible” type of person. I am a person who let’s their light shine. Let the life I live speak for me. I shouldn’t have to tell you what or how to do it. My life should show you what God has done for me.

I believe society has put such a negative connotation on the word “religion.” Why does it have to be? If you belong to a church, it’s OK. If you work with the youth at your church, it’s OK. The Lord asks us to be good stewards, so it’s not just about being spiritual it’s also about being good Samaritans, helping people and spending time with the Lord. I say all this to say I won’t compromise my relationship with Christ just because I live in a world where being Saved is not recognized or praised. I’m a journalist, and most journalists aren’t Saved. Some are, but most aren’t. I have mad respect for people in the music and entertainment industry who maintains their relationship with Christ, represents it and still be highly recognizable in an industry where most people don’t necessarily walk the walk. Fonzworth “Derek Watkins” Bentley, whom is the self-proclaimed Gentlemen guru of our time has stepped it up. He is most known for P. Diddy’s assistant but has made his own stamp as the popular MTV’s “G’s to Gents” host. If you have followed his career, seen how he has interacts with folks, you will recognize this brother is Saved and filled with the Holy Spirit. He doesn’t sugar coat anything. As a matter of fact, if you notice in his interviews, at the end of every interview he gives viewers or listeners a verse from the Bible or just some encouraging words to everyone. I said to myself now that’s the way to represent. And people still love him. He’s been able to break the barriers of that stigma or religion verses spirituality. So thank you, Mr. Bentley! He belongs to a church in Atlanta and attends church even when he’s super busy. Always has time for the Lord. I will never compromise whose I belong to for anyone and he has reminded me of that. I pray that what I’m saying is not offensive, but is just a reminder for those of you who are reading this–or maybe just a lingering thought that you may not have fathomed.

* Fonzworth Bentley will be on my online radio show…date will be publicized soon.

Published in: on July 25, 2009 at 3:33 AM  Comments (1)  

Black in America Part II

bb2 I was invited to attend the pre-screening of Black in America II in Washington D.C. Let me just say being black in America is not about being impoverished or highlighting the fact some black neighborhoods aren’t as educated as others. So I welcome the fact CNN decided not to harp on that aspect. Instead, CNN tried to show while there are poverty-stricken places in America, there are also those areas where higher education is not just an option-it’s a must. Journalist, Soledad O’Brien, talked to some interesting people including Steve Perry, who is the principal and founder at Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford, CT. Personally, I think he is probably the most realest and caring principal I’ve ever witnessed. He is strict on his students, but what shocked  and impressed me about his school is that 100 percent of his students go off to college. Every one of his students go to a four-year college. That is always his mission. He said if it’s not 100 percent then he’s not doing his job and neither is the school itself. I applaud him and obviously he is doing something right! And the students love him, so it goes to show tough love is great when it’s done right!

Because it was a pre-screening, we were unable to see the whole documentary, but what I did see was inspiring. Journalist, Roland Martin, was the moderator and though I could only see him for a short period of time, he left those of us who were in the overflow room a powerful message. Martin expressed his concern of not only committing and striving  to see President Barack Obama in 2017, he blatantly told the crowd if you make a commitment  to be an impact in the black community for the next 365 days and after that year you realize you have not done it, then you have become the issue of black America. While many people may argue that sentiment, I believe Martin was trying to give people a wake up call that black America is not going to change if people don’t plan to follow through in their commitments for CHANGE. Hence the reason why we constantly see stories on poverty and uneducated black children. Let’s be the change!

Published in: on July 15, 2009 at 7:44 PM  Comments (2)  

My Radio Show! Check out my segments!

Published in: on July 13, 2009 at 11:52 PM  Leave a Comment  

BET adopting “The Game” Hmmm…

This just in…  BET might be sealing a deal with CBS Television Studios to acquire the recently canceled CW show, “The Game.” Tia Mowry posted this link on her Twitter page, so it came straight from her: http://www.tvguide.com/News/Tia-Mowry-Game-1007828.aspx

This just takes me right back to where I’ve started in this whole TV network research. It’s a fight between ratings and networks…and the research continues.The Game

Published in: on July 8, 2009 at 11:57 PM  Leave a Comment  

Radio Success

I must say I am pleased at how well my radio show “Brownvintage” has been going. Although, I still have a long way to go. On July 12 I will have my next show, and I am excited about it because I will be highlighting someone who is on that “global grind.” Her name is Sandra Shepard and she is relaunching her online magazine called “Underground Unseen.” It’s an awesome outlet for young indie oldschoolartists, musically, poetically and even artistically. Over the course of a few months, she has gained a lot of hits and we are going to find out how she did it and how she has continued to blossom. Check out her site at http://www.undergroundunseen.com. Also, yours truly is the first voice you will hear as you log on to the site!

Like Sandra, I am also trying to make moves! So Stay tuned!

-Keep it Natural

Published in: on July 7, 2009 at 2:57 AM  Leave a Comment  

Hosea Chanchez talks about ‘The Game’ and it going into syndication whether or not it Get’s picked up again

http://www.blackvoices.com/blogs/2009/04/23/game-plan-hosea-chanchez-talks-sitcom-s-future/ hosea-game

Published in: on April 28, 2009 at 10:36 PM  Leave a Comment