15 November 2009

100 Issues for 100 Days: #90

#90: Double Feature

Today I went to see Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day and Precious.

After reading a lot about Precious and hearing everyone's viewpoint on the film, I was eager to see it myself. I was surprised by how many people were in the theater. Almost every seat was taken. The reactions were varied and there were definitely moments when people laughed due to the uncomfortable things that were portrayed on-screen.

After seeing the film for myself, I find myself at an impasse. I've seen most of Lee Daniels' oeuvre and from what I've observed the man makes detailed choices. So I wonder about the choice to intercut Precious' rape with shots of pig's feet and vaseline. Or to show a beaten Precious walking the streets with her second child beneath a "spay and neuter" sign. I don't think these were unconscious decisions so I wonder what symbolism Daniels is trying to evoke. Is Precious no better than a homeless dog that should be spayed? Is the juxtaposition of pig's feet and Vaseline supposed to be commentary on the stereotype of Black female rape or a reinforcement of it? As a film it did it's job. I connected with Precious, I felt her pain and cheered for her overcoming her obstacles and though the film started to tread closely to the "nice white lady" stereotypes, it was good. And Lenny Kravitz was in it looking scrumdiddlyumptious.

I also went to see Boondock Saints II, a sequel I've been waiting for for years. Boondock Saints is one of those cult faves that people either love or hate. I love it. It's a simple story: two brothers decide to clean-up Boston when the cops fail to do so and earn the name, The Saints because they leave coins on the eyes of their kills and arrange them as if they are being buried. But it's so much more than that. It's clever, there's gratuitous violence and it's raunchy as hell. Essentially it's every guys favorite movie. The sequel was just as good. It was cute and funny and full of gunfights. Although the story stretched itself too far in some places, it was entertaining as hell and set itself up for a third installment (please God let this happen).

I'm thinking about going to see it again (and that says a lot cause it's hard for me to get to theaters).

No comments: