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But Does Anyone REALLY Want To See "Red Tails"?

by Sergio
January 12, 2012 2:59 PM
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Red Tails

So this morning a friend of mine forwards me this e-mail that's been going around:

     "I am writing regarding the new movie Red Tails.  This movie was 23 years in the making.  George Lucas (Star Wars) wrote the movie with the Tuskegee Airmen.  When he started writing the movie there were 42 men alive,  now there are only 7.  He said their stories were so compelling he did not want to leave anything out.  There are 3 movies.  This is the first all black film.  He is using his own money, because the big companies will not finance an all black film.  If the movie does not do well the first weekend, we will never see the other two!  The movie comes out Jan 20 Friday! Please make a date with someone and see it the first weekend! Please forward this email to everyone you know, so we can support this movie!"  

Here we go again. Asides from the fact that Red Tails is definitely not the "first all black film" (has this guy been living in a barn???), this is it yet another example of what I call "castor oil" movies that black filmgoers are commanded to go see as sense of duty and obligation.

As I wrote in S & A back in June (HERE) there's always this pressure that: "We-must-support-this-movie-even-though-it'll-be-as-dry-as-toast-and-even-less-entertaining-because-it-is-a-positive-movie-that-will-uplift-the-race-and-if-it-fails-then-they-won't-make-any-more-movies-like-this-anymore. 

The simple fact, and I've said this several times before, is that NO ONE sees a film out of duty or obligation. People see a movie because they WANT to.

People went in droves to see The Devil Inside last weekend despite horrible word of mouth and terrible reviews because they wanted to.

When Tambay asked a few weeks ago what films people were most anxious to see in 2012, films like The Hunger Games, Django Unchanged, Prometheus and The Hobbit were named by all the commenters. I can't really recall anyone saying Red Tails.

And from what I've always seen, even the most ardent "castor oil" supporters encouraging people to go out and see the films never even watch the films themselves. They always seem to find some sort of excuse. 

Also, the fact that people are sending out e-mails like this, and trying very hard to convince people to see it means that even they know that there isn't a lot of enthusiam for the film itself. And I absolutely resent this idea that the future of black cinema lives or dies because of one film. I mean seriously?

How many times have we heard that in the past? If Red Tails tanks (which I suspect it will - I've seen it) believe me, black cinema will still be around, epecially in the independent film world, where it's always thrived. It's been around since the silent film era, and it's definitely not on its death bed.

You're just not going to see another film about the Tuskegee Airmen; but there are SO many other stories to tell.

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  • rlysrlyppl | June 1, 2012 12:54 PMReply

    Some people are far too obsessed with skin color. There's also some seriously disturbing paranoia, a wide array of persecution complexes and some truly astounding idiocy going on here too.

  • HandsomeBlackLaddieBrett1953 | April 27, 2012 9:43 AMReply

    Angiewhite and Jews are NOT responsible for young blacks' embrace of the dignity-absent,stereotype-affirming garbage called (c)rap "music!!!!"

  • HandsomeBlackLaddieBrett1953 | April 27, 2012 9:41 AMReply

    How 'bout an AMERICAN movie with a great-looking,multi-racial,multi-ethnic cast?After all,it IS 2012!!!!

  • HandsomeBlackLaddieBrett1953 | April 27, 2012 9:41 AMReply

    How 'bout an AMERICAN movie with a great-looking,multi-racial,multi-ethnic cast?After all,it IS 2012!!!!

  • HandsomeBlackLaddieBrett1953 | April 27, 2012 9:38 AMReply

    Christi Luv,the TRULY unseen people in the film-and television are us boyishly handsome,NON-URBAN(read:"stereotyically black;i.e.,at 58,I'm a rocker dude who also loves Country music and is said to resemble a handsome black cowboy in my Western duds!!!!),articulate black lads who don't fit Hollywood's modern black male stereotypes: the eunuchoidal buddy/side-kick to the white star and the mentally and/or morally stunted pity/opprobrium objects!!!!

  • Watson R. Maynard | April 10, 2012 8:27 PMReply

    I would love to see more historical movies about the Red Tails, my wife and son enjoys them too.

    Watson R. Maynard

  • Bman3304 | March 29, 2012 7:08 PMReply

    How about encouraging blacks to , raise their kids, treat others with respect, emulate positive role models and stay off drugs and out of jail, before seeing a movie?

  • NorthBrooklynTeacher | April 8, 2012 10:13 PM

    I agree with you totally! I have worked hard to get my inner city school to invite the Tuskegee Airmen over, but what hinders achievement of African Americans is not a dearth of historical films, but a lack of reality in acknowledging why immigrant Asian American students achieve (even when parents having limited English), and African American students are a dismal failure at all academic levels. Self control when it comes to sex and bringing children into the world is the key; Blacks tend to breed children, instead of raising them ( having been a father figure to two generations of Black kids, I am in a position to know) .What African Americans need is less fantasy and back slapping and more reality therapy!

  • Eileen | February 11, 2012 8:38 PMReply

    Enjoyed the movie, "Red Tails", however, it left me wanting much more. I had seen the documentary, "On Freedoms Wings", & "Wings For This Man" years ago, & believe me, the true story is far more interesting in their own words, (the airmen & the narrator), & far more thrilling! You can see both these documentaries about the Tuskegee Airmen on YouTube. These brave warriors took the high-road, during a time in America's History, when they were often thought of as less than second-class citizens. Their true faith in God & the comradeship they held for each other, was an inspiring tribute to the honor they deserve & held, that turned their feats of bravery, all the more, making them known as true hero's. Still, I enjoyed the movie as entertainment, but, do yourself a favor & find out why they say, the truth is better than fiction!

  • trakam | February 7, 2012 9:28 PMReply

    I saw the movie...twice and it was great! And guess what..Noone made me go!

  • james | April 1, 2012 6:03 PM

    Great? liar, you did not see this movie

  • Ralph | January 31, 2012 3:15 PMReply

    Loved the movie, I thought it was too short,I know two hours just seemed like a minute! .....Lucas sir you are the man..the movie was like a throw back to the fortys Cinema.

  • Angie | January 25, 2012 1:04 PMReply

    I really saddens me to here our young bright literate generation talking like this. That I believe is the reason why our movement and sucess in the world of entertainment is partly a big joke. I fear that we are so down on our own race and people, that there is no recovery. Due to a large part being from what the all jewish, all white, exec. populas has already planted in the minds of african american's. I see the struggle continues, we are so hard pressed and quick to put our opinion out there, but the last to pick up a hand and do something positive. Like encourage someone black to go and see a black movie. I guess you rather not see a black man or women working in an industry where we spend more time and money.

  • Andrew Green | May 23, 2012 1:56 PM

    Iam so sick of segregation.. This is segregation at its finest but per usual it seems the African American Community do not mind segregation if it is in there favor.. Another example "African American reading section only at walmart".. Are you kidding me!? Why are African Americans books not with every other races on the rack. Walmart should be sued! Iam a history major and Red Tails is a disgrace to those brave men the movie is hugely historically inaccurate.. It's coming to a boiling point in America and something serious is about to happen..

  • lashonda | January 25, 2012 9:37 PM

    Exactly Angie, that's what made me so angry with the commentator. What's wrong with encouraging blacks to support a black movie. Especially a positive one such as this.

  • lashonda | January 24, 2012 11:13 PMReply

    Sergio or whoever wrote this commentary really pissed me off with his stupid comments. Of course as blacks we should encourage one another to support a film that has an all black cast. Why shouldn't we? Especially a positive historical black film! Majority of the decision makers in hollywood are white men, they could care less if there are ever any positive movies made about blacks. It's such a slap in the face for these execs to not support a film by George Lucas with his credibility and to have the audacity to say they refuse to back him because "it's an all black cast and no one would care enough to see the movie". That statement is such an insult that black people should feel compelled to prove them to be a lie! It's funny that "The Help" was made with no problem, a movie about blacks being maids and a white woman coming to their rescue but a historical proud film about blacks helping to fight during the war and everything they had to go through was met with opposition! Good for George Lucas to be brave and care enough to use 150mill of his own money! As blacks we should feel obligated to support Lucas, the movie and to make a fool out of those uppity white hollywood execs who pretty much said in so many words no one cares to see a movie about blacks unless it's in the same o'l stereotypical roles!

  • Andrew | May 23, 2012 1:59 PM

    The execs don't back him because it is wrong! It's segregation at its finest.. Why is it even considered an all black film?! There are no whites, hispànics, etc only films.

  • justinfication | January 24, 2012 1:56 PMReply

    Here are my thought on the movie...

  • Sukki | January 23, 2012 5:37 PMReply

    My husband (a military man of 30 years service) and I went to see Red Tails last night and we were both thrilled with it. It was beautifully done, and the acting was superb. We love war movies and this one was way past time to be done. Good for George Lucas! You showed us that black men are brave, too. No, we are not black; we are white, but would love to see more movies like this one.

  • CARING | January 23, 2012 4:03 PMReply


  • Christi Luv | January 22, 2012 5:29 PMReply

    I saw Red Tails and I enjoyed it. I know, I know the black man in the interracial scene in the movie looked longingly in the eyes of Italian Sophia and said, 'you are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.' Well, such is life. He only said what SOME black men think.

    I am so thankful we have the Queen Latifahs and Tyler Perrys (I know, I know) of the world out there making movies about black women that humanize us and showcase our beauty. Before you start jumping down Tyler's throat, he has made movies that show the spectrum of black women personalities and beauty. Some folks just like to focus on Madea.

    If you want to see a color-struck movie, check out Jumping The Broom. Its chock- full- of colorism. You have the fair-skinned Paula Patton bride (love her!), dark-skinned husband-to-be, and the very dark-skinned bridesmaid who gets a real lashing from a guy for rejecting his advances 'cause she should be 'thankful that a man would pay her dark-skinned behind some attention'. That is the point at which I walked out of the movie. The light-skinned girl gets married to an equally acceptable dark-skinned black man and the dark-skinned girl gets put in her place. I'm sure my dark-skinned sistas did not pay their money to see themselves dismissed in a movie that is supposed to entertain and embrace us. By the way, jet-black T.D. Jakes was the executive producer of that movie; I'm positive that his mama looks nothing like Paula but more like the bridesmaid. I am absolutely sick and tired of the way BLACK folk use the color wheel in the movies THEY make.

    So give George Lucas a break...

  • overseas | January 21, 2012 3:54 PMReply

    @bondgirl 479 black nurses in ALL of WWII guess if there was just 1 it should have been in the movie huh SIT DOWN "F#ck-This-Movie Coalition of Bitter Black Folks" indeed..

  • BONDGIRL | January 21, 2012 9:43 PM

    The Tuskegee Airmen were made up of only 400+ men in ALL of WWII, yet 15 made it onscreen (twice). I can't say whether a black woman should be featured if there was just 1 nurse, only that there should be bc there were 479. I'll leave the "supposing" to you. What point is that making exactly? No, the ones that SHOULD have a seat are those Eddie Long type Negroes, like you, who stand at a pulpit hypocritically proselytizing about this film as if it's the second coming of Christ to save us.

  • Jug | January 20, 2012 8:55 PMReply

    This MIGHT just be the longest thread on S&A LMAO But, keep refreshing this link all weekend & on Monday y'all. This thing is the "tale of the tape" sort of speak. Very good numbers for RED TAILS

  • Cherish | January 20, 2012 3:42 PMReply

    Men Of “Red Tails” Discuss Interracial Relationship In Film [VIDEO]
    Damn. Nadine and BondGirl really broke it down, but this was something. I'm starting to believe that for (some) Black men, validation of their manhood and place in this White world is founded within the opportunity to have sex with White women. Interesting.

  • Maggie | January 21, 2012 11:35 AM

    You are JUST NOW realizing this? lol!
    This is all black men aspire to be...with a white woman.

  • Nadine | January 20, 2012 8:41 PM

    ...that was sad. That video was sad Cherish. "Lost" is the word, Moe. I feel like shaking some sense into them... I wasn't expecting David to mess up like that or for them to be so ill-prepared. I definitely had higher expectations of David. I don't know... I just feel sad for them now...

  • MOE | January 20, 2012 4:43 PM

    WHAT!?!?!?!?!?!? Yo! I am in shock,!!!! These men are L-O-S-T and I love me some David Oyelowo (his wife is cute too), (biggup David in "Small Island") I just saw Cuba Gooding, Jr. talking about Red Tails on the View today...I was so embarrassed and I think it is a testament to the major problem that Nadine was talking about below in her THESIS (dang). These men don't know what they are talking about! They are living in "victim land" in their heads and don't know or understand their own history and present day "situation". Why go on to the view and NOT KNOW when the military was integrated! It's like they don't even have a Spark Notes worthy understanding of this thing they are a part of but they have their masculinity and that's all that matters! THIS IS CRAZEE!!! Their PR people should be FIRED!!!!

  • richboy | January 20, 2012 4:19 PM

    wow. for anyone on the fence about this film, this clip should seal the deal.

  • anthony byrd | January 20, 2012 9:33 AMReply

    As here people talk about how Hollywood will not support this movie red tail with funds yet they will support movies like devil inside with all negatives. This movie red tail has history to it, that shows Hollywood is still in control of this when it come to black actors.o

  • deno 257 | January 20, 2012 9:13 AMReply

    Holiwood rip off this is just an expensive remake of the tuskegee airman ..pretty sure cuba was in this too!

  • James Brown | January 20, 2012 9:10 AMReply

    This is the gaga for an all black american cast film .. Gaga to the madonna that is "the tuskegee Airman" released in 1995 staring laurence fishburn and for the first time cuba gooding jr.
    I watched the cast promote the film on BET recently and found it laughable that Cuba like all failed to mention that he had stared in the same film 17 years ago! [totally lame]

    In my opinion it's a great story that if unlike me you haven't seen it, i would give this a watch. .. though you will be disappointed as the original has more of an impact and is much better.

  • Nadine | January 20, 2012 10:50 AM

    Some folks mentioned it on the boards... here is the youtube link to the entire movie as well ... - Way more accurate and excellent. Laurence and Cuba killed it...

  • brian tyson | January 20, 2012 5:27 AMReply

    I shall certainly go to see the film; but I am surprised that no one ever mentions (or compares it with) its predecessor, called simply The Tuskegee Airmen (ALSO starring Cuba Gooding Jr., and including Laurence Fishburne) made in the mid-nineties! I thought that film was really excellent, and historically sound. From what I've seen of the trailer of this one, it is less historically accurate, and Lucas seems careless of what I might call the true World War II “atmosphere," producing his air-fights with such obviously computerised models that one shrugs them off as “special effects" as soon as the sequence begins. I hope I am wrong. We shall see.

  • Donella | January 22, 2012 3:54 PM

    Terrance Howard portrayed a Tuskegee Airman in Hart's War.

  • Jug | January 19, 2012 1:51 PMReply

    Umm, reviews are rolling in and they're not good. What many of us thought, the action would be awesome, the movie not so much so. *Sigh* God Damnit George...

  • Christi Luv | January 22, 2012 5:03 PM

    I've net hung my hat on movie reviews. I saw Red Tails and I enjoyed it. Take your young boys so they can get a sense of the era.

  • Jug | January 19, 2012 7:23 PM

    @Bondgirl-"A. Shit. Sandwich." LMBAO You're crazy as hell LOL Oh, and I was wrong. It had an uptick from 33% to 38% :-O

  • BONDGIRL | January 19, 2012 7:04 PM

    Toldja. A.Shit.Sandwich. lol Even Roger Ebert gave it a 2.5/4, and he usually loves movies like this!

  • Jug | January 19, 2012 2:43 PM

    @Zeus-And when it's that low, it only stays there or gets worse. Again...*Sigh*...Oh and before folks start in with the "screw the Oscars" mess, just using that as an example of what people are preoccupied with when it comes to certain films. Just an observation

  • Zeus | January 19, 2012 2:21 PM

    They are tearing it apart, 33%, not good...........

  • Jug | January 19, 2012 2:08 PM

    And if you want a clearer picture of what's going on, go to Rotten Tomatoes & look up the audience reactions. Among users, the users with pictures showing Black folks are happy about it & what it represents, while the users whose pictures are white talk about the integrity of the film itself. Difference between the Image Awards & the Oscars right there...*Sigh*

  • Nadine | January 19, 2012 1:23 PMReply

    SERGIO, IF THIS IS TOO LONG, PLEASE DELETE ----PLEASE FORGIVE THE STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS POST, BUT I ACTUALLY NEED HELP this post is getting old, so I don't know if I'll be able to get real answers from people, but @IGBO - the only thing with which I disagreed or thought needed some clarification in your earliest post was this sense that "Black People" aren't characterized as intelligent or heroic in films... I kind of get you because Black PEOPLE are not, but Black men, almost as A RULE, are which is why I'm not quite understanding some of the statements about this movie and its ties to some sort of "moment" for Black PEOPLE out there. This country is pretty clear on its thoughts about Black PEOPLE and it falls along gender lines. Black women are GHETTO and Black men "HAVE" COOL (which is to be coveted). Simple as that. Black heroic and intelligent males are in the Zeitgeist. The other night I fell asleep watching Iron Man 2 on Netflix. Cheadle was "the man"... No, he was not IRON MAN, but he was superior to Iron Man in decorum, dignity, leadership qualities, honor and was a warrior. Will Smith movies anyone? Even as an anti-hero in Hancock we saw that his true nature was a caring one and, not unlike I-Robot, his character changed after trauma where he became devastated by the loss of Charlize Theron's character in one movie and the loss of a little girl, not his -- a stranger, in I-Robot, which apparently threw him into the DEPTHS OF DESPAIR. Sidebar: What's also interesting about his movies are the incidents of jabs directed exclusively at Black women (Hancock - "Even YOU don't deserve this", I-Robot - "The Mammy"... "You...(puff...puff... are 'A" a$$hole" and his disgust at discussing his ex-wife whose name most likely belonged to a Black woman)...this permeates the subconscious of a society... In X-Men, they "watered" down Storm to the point where she actually became a babysitter and chauffeur; casting was horrible (can you say IMAN, Fatima Siad or Yordanos Teshager, at the very least Aisha Tyler please) and Storm's "powers", which were near epic in the comics, fizzled in the hands of the Hollywood writers, yet Riptide in X-Men First-Class, having probably 1/20th her powers, was near omnipotent. Let's not even mention the heroic/paternal, but ill-fated Darwin (I still don't understand that casting)... "The Incredibles", one of my favorite animated flicks (Brad Bird - dude never disappoints), had Samuel L. Jackson's character, Frozone who, at the end, saves the day, but even he has to contend with the disembodied voice of a nagging Black woman ("Where's my supersuit?!?!??!" dialogue). Denzel Washington movies? Hello? Anyone? Even back in the day, Wesley Snipes (TALENTED DUDE) was ON FIRE, Passenger 57, Demolition Man (I don't care what anyone says, I LOVED that movie), U.S. Marshalls, and more ALL Hollywood movies. I mean... where is the disconnect? What are Black men NOT SEEING in terms of positive imagery that THIS movie is providing... Is it that for once, it is just ALL about them? How is the formula of this movie different from any of the others I mentioned. Black male heroes with Black female absence or "castration" (with a White female presence). Again, this belief that Black men are not being seen as heroic, intelligent AND, VERY IMPORTANT, DESIRABLE is just not right which is why you'll hear a lot of non-Blacks scoffing about that complaint because they REGULARLY experience Black men in these roles. Let's not even start with all the Black male doctors on television. It's not the "Mystical Negress"... it's the "Mystical NegrO"... and Black men in SPORTS and MUSIC? Even shows for preschoolers... Black women and girls have Uniqua (some sort of animal) and Caillou's best friend; There are NO Black women on Sesame Street, have mercy, but two Black males; elsewhere there are a endless representations of Black boys for preschoolers on television. Check out Yo Gabba Gabba and sooooo much more! Yes, people please go see this movie, but I REALLY need someone to explain to me how this movie will change things for "Black PEOPLE" in Hollywood (as SOME are saying). Is it the CONTENT of this movie, because I don't think we should expect too many historical pieces coming out of the U.S., period, but Black men in actions movies...NOT NEW... As for the Star Wars comparisons below, can you say Princess Leia? Lastly, it just seems to me that this movie simply solidifies the continuing trend of the severing the relationship between Black men and Black women in an attempt to "own" and "sell" certain aspects of Black culture that are easily accessible through Black men. Forgive my stream of consciousness ... but I'M REALLY curious as to the Black male disconnect from the reality of the Black man's image in mainstream America. I do, though, think this speaks to a separate issue; Black men are NOT seeing themselves because they are not WATCHING THE SAME MAINSTREAM CONTENT that Black Women are watching. So when we, Black Women, see you all, Black Men, all over Grey's Anatomy and House and 90210 and Happy Endings and New Girl and Saturday Night Live and Community and the Practice and Psych and Lost and I Hate my Teenaged Daughter and the list goes on yet we don't see ourselves (unless we are unattractive or tragic), we find it shocking when Black men "ask for more". At the same time, I don't watch basketball, football, sports in general, not a fan of the Wire (yeah, I said it), but I know their television schedules are plentiful... I mean I'm just guessing, but I'd like to know what TOP 25 TELEVISION shows and MOVIES Black MEN are WATCHING or are familiar with given their perspective on the state of the industry for Black men and women. This is a new angle for me in thinking about this, but I cannot continue to believe that Black men are CHOOSING to be blind to what is CLEARLY a disparity of representation for Black women and Black men in the media. I have to conclude that Black men are enthusiastically included in MAINSTREAM American media, but don't know it.

  • Real | January 22, 2012 12:12 AM

    @NADINE:"Lastly, it just seems to me that this movie simply solidifies the continuing trend of the severing the relationship between Black men and Black women in an attempt to "own" and "sell" certain aspects of Black culture that are easily accessible through Black men."

    ThIS, and everything else you've said. And yes, Blac men are now throoughly entrenched in the mainstream media, quite simply because they have proven to that they are willing to do anything, including destroy structure the Black family, abandon their communities, and basically kill off the Black race mentally to gain favor. 99% of BLACK MEN WILL SELL BLACK WOMEN OUT FOR MONEY, FAME, AND GAIN & ARE SELLOUTS. TRUE DANGERS TO THE BLACK RACE. God Bless Obama, he's the only one of worth. Period. I am. done.

  • rootstafari | January 19, 2012 12:47 PMReply

    The thing that turns me off the most about the film in the preview is that it looks like pure military propaganda. It's kind of a tall order to expect folks to get hyped for a military film in this time of endless war machine military industrial complex run tingisms! i'm sure some of his budget came from that industry. But I will say that I apprecilove the fact that Lucus has a history of giving rolls to Black actors in a genre (science fiction) that often omits our existence.

  • Nemesis | January 21, 2012 10:22 PM

    Hmm... You may be on to something here. With war with Iran being a distinct possibility in the not too distant future (a distraction from the financial fiasco and a bid to get control of more oil) recruiting young men (including young black men) is key.

    Lucas did say, didn't he, that the film was patriotic and aimed and teenaged boys...?

  • zGuest | January 19, 2012 7:05 AMReply

    Anyone stupid enough to spend $100 mil on a movie about guys (black or otherwise) flying around killing and dropping bombs deserves for that movie to "bomb". I do not care. I am Black and I do not give a rat's ass about African Americans in a warmed over Hallmark movie that thinks it's a video game. Hurry up and lose your money Lucas and leave Black cinema to scrappy independents with actual creativity...we don't need to cozy up to the Monopoly.

  • Cla | January 23, 2012 12:11 AM

    That's modern day house slave talk.I have alway's wanted to know what modern day house slave sounded like.After reading your ignorance now I know.

  • Igbo | January 19, 2012 2:48 AMReply

    Couldn't get into the promo screening tonight in L.A., so it looks like I'll be seeing it on Sunday. If the film is good, I'll be forking over some more $$$ to see it again.

    Personally, I give Lucas kudos for putting his "money where his mouth is" and getting this film made. A lot of people don't know this but for his first feature THX 1138, Lucas went against the studio and chose a relatively unknown black stage actor James Wheaton over Orson Welles to narrate that film.

  • Zen 823 | January 18, 2012 10:16 PMReply

    If Red Tails does not receive enough support we may never see another big budget film staring people of color. Forced to live in a cursed world starring Tyler Perry films or Hollywood crap with stereotypical blacks and Latinos, guns, drugs, and gangs.

  • KNOWITALL | January 18, 2012 7:35 PMReply

    Brotha I agree with you on every point..... I have been saying the same exact things.... However I heard one of the characters in the movie has a white wife in the movie but his wife was black in real life...

  • Mugg | January 18, 2012 11:58 AMReply

    Lucas didnt say it was the first black film. He said it was the first with over a 50mil budget

  • Igbo | January 18, 2012 4:05 AMReply

    No, I don't agree that if "Red Tails" is not successful will mark the end of black film. What will happen is the dismal state of black film that we see right now will continue. With a few notable exceptions what we get right now are two types of films. Either low brow mass market films from the likes of Tyler Perry or edgy microbudget films for the art house crowd like "Pariah." Among other things, we're not getting many films that show black people as either intelligent or heroic. Even if "Red Tails" does catch fire at the box office, there's no guarantee that Hollywood will open the flood gates for more of the same. "The Color Purple" made nearly $100 million at the box office (in 1980s dollars no less) and it would be ten years before a major Hollywood studio would make another ensemble film featuring black women with "Waiting to Exhale" (and Terry McMillan is no Alice Walker). ...And yes, I REALLY want to see "Red Tails" and judging from the overwhelming response of a Film Independent sponsored screening scheduled for today, Wednesday, Jan. 18th, 2012 in Los Angeles, so do A LOT of other people. But I'm not going to put the weight of past disappointments as a black moviegoers on "Red Tails" nor do I plan to see it opening weekend out of a sense of obligation for the "cause." I'm going to see it with the hope that I'll be entertained and encouraged.

  • richboy | January 18, 2012 12:14 AMReply

    Jasmine Sullivan has confirmed via twitter that there are no Black women in the film. Her role, along with Edwina and Stacey were all cut out.

    jsullivanmusic Jazmine Sullivan
    Shout out to the cast of redtails! Just so u know I was edited out of the final version...

  • tmack | January 17, 2012 11:59 PMReply

    Well, there is this guilt trip that if we don't support Red Tail, studio honchos will interpret it as proof the black films don't sell. But, hey, they'd find that proof anyway to rationalize their outlook.

    The point is that this is an historical film that was 23 years in the making. Historical films that take 23 years to get made begin to smell a bit musty. And...wasn't a film done about the Tuskegee airmen already? Wasn't Laurence Fishburne in it?

    So why is it that a historical film like The Help gets so much box office, but not Red Tail?

  • Ghost | January 18, 2012 9:12 PM

    The Help gets all that because-we have no issue supporting a female film. It was historical but not to everyone because you have some folks that didn't live around that stuff or in those conditions. Remember how many folks refused to see that film because of the cast? Most said they weren't interested because of the STORY-especially with a white woman writing it. Now look at this film-we have folks protesting because of the writer, the cast, lack of women and folks think these guys did nothing in the war. So the battle is already being lost before the film comes out. And the worst thing is it's mainly US trashing the film. It's like when it's a black male in teh lead-we want to trash the film but support it if it's a woman not named Zoe Solanda.

  • Mignon | January 17, 2012 10:40 PMReply

    Sergio, I can understand your sentiments. I don't think anyone believes that black film will "die". However, what I think is at stake here is the opportunity for high budget films that tell dignifying stories of the African American heritage that could potentially be seen by broader audiences, is what people feel such a sense of urgency about. I'm tired of the buffoonery or the half ass characters that black artist are offered. I hope Red Tails is successful but I definitely understand the ill feeling towards the sense of obligation.

  • Donella | January 17, 2012 4:24 PMReply

    Wow, how this thread grew. No one can say there is a lack of interest in Red Tails. BTW, I just read that the film is written by John Ridley who also has a story credit for Three Kings (Ice Cube, George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg) and is the cowriter for Steve McQueen's forthcoming 12 Years a Slave.

  • Nadine | January 19, 2012 12:35 AM

    @NAREN ... I'm sorry that you are participating in the labeling of those with whom you believe you disagree as being apart of a "F#ck-This-Movie Coalition of Bitter Black Folks", so coined by RASHEED. Do you know what their arguments are 'cause, you didn't touch on any of their issues... "I see the precedent that this movie is making and I am more excited than I can describe. I shouldn't have to make the argument of all the firsts this movie is setting (for I'm pretty certain Rasheed has made most of them for me, good looks brother :))"... I'm sorry, wouldn't you know if he made those arguments? Didn't you read his statements? Maybe you should take the time to list "all the firsts this movie is setting" for us to understand because I'm not seeing those answers elsewhere on this page. You are also making assumptions, very much like Rasheed - which is probably why he resonates with you, about the THOUGHTS of those you are, supposedly, debating... You CANNOT argue what you THINK the beliefs are of your "opponents" based on your assumptions, that's CRAZY... (Miracle at St. Anna)...what?!?!? Who said what about what? You do not even seem to be addressing the issues that Rasheed's so touted "Bitter Black Folk" are noting, so why "jump on that"? Be, but know that there are legitimate issues with this movie and the trend that its writers chose to follow.

  • Naren | January 18, 2012 10:35 PM

    ... AND AARON MCGRUDER! (creator and writer of The Boondocks!)

    For all you Boondocks fans, if nothing else, you'll recognize his "Black Jesus" jokes. And if you remember, Grandpa was a Redtail Tuskegee Airman.

    I'm rather surprised by the "Fuck-This-Movie Coalition of Bitter Black Folks" response (as Rasheed so eloquently put it). As a black filmmaker who absolutely can not wait for the opportunity to helm action movies over $50 million, I see the precedent that this movie is making and I am more excited than I can describe. I shouldn't have to make the argument of all the firsts this movie is setting (for I'm pretty certain Rasheed has made most of them for me, good looks brother :)) but more importantly it's important to look at the context of this movie.

    Retails is NOT Black Saving Private Ryan, it's Black Star Wars set in WWII... So Blar Wars I guess.

    It's meant to entertain and excite young boys in the 8-15 demo and reillustrate our collective imaginations of the WWII. Context people! Why not create a film product that might inspire a whole generation of young boys? We have WWII heros of all races and ethnicities that are simply left out of the conventional conversation. No, this film is not a Bennetton ad, but it's a break in the dam. One could argue it's picking up where Miracle at St.Anna left off. And for those critical of Spike Lee's film (I can just hear the belligerent responses already) I refer you to a saying in business that seems apt, "Pioneers take all the arrows and Settlers proper". St. Anna was a pioneer. Redtails has the potentional to be a settler but how well it accomplishes that, of course, remains to be seen.

    Bottom line, if you don't want to see Redtails, the don't. It's a free country. But if you DO want to see it, if you think this film is important, if you feel compelled to wear a Redtails hat the way we wore X hats in the early nineties... THEN SEE IT FIRST WEEKEND! Your little brother will love it :)

  • ME | January 17, 2012 2:27 PMReply

    Okay, name one movie with an 'all black cast.'

  • Elsie | January 18, 2012 9:01 PM

    A bunch of 'hood movies like Friday, Juice, American Gangster, New Jack City, Boyz N Da Hood, Set It Off, Waiting To Exhale -- need I go on? How many ways can we count the misery? Pathetic truly. Terribly, slanderous crap.

  • Donella | January 18, 2012 7:01 PM

    Boomerang (Eddie Murphy)

  • tmack | January 18, 2012 12:00 AM

    Carmen Jones? With Dorothy Dandridge & Harry Belafonte?

  • Russ | January 17, 2012 1:56 PMReply

    The problem with coming out to see this film is that if it is successful, it won't be sending the message that "Hey, people don't mind seeing predominately blacks in major roles" and encouraging Hollywood execs to fund more black films--instead it will be sending the message "Hey, people don't mind seeing predominately black males in major roles as long as there is a white woman at their side," and THAT formula will be re-justified and continue to be produced. Which is no different from movies like Hitch, Training Day, I Am Legend, and many other movies in the past 15 years that have had black men paired with white/Latino/non-black women and have been successful. I don't see how this isn't the standard formula we've been seeing already, or how this movie is supposed to be deviating from that, as its not truly an "all-black cast" without there being any black women (and especially not when there are more white men and white women in the film than black women).

  • Nadine | January 19, 2012 8:04 PM

    @Bondgirl - "Ferociously"..."wooed"... "EATING" it up? we go.... I think it's apropos that you should mention "Othello". That title should be incorporated into some terminology describing this "syndrome" in movies, television, music and "their" psyches. Yeah...definitely a disgrace. It's embarrassing.

  • BONDGIRL | January 19, 2012 5:49 PM

    Nadine, at the screening I attended, those white people were EATING up that storyline b/t the pilot and the Italian. I heard more laughs and favorable reactions towards their love story than the rest of the film. They laughed jovially at the language barriers the couple faced, the solid moral structure of her family's courting process, and most importantly noted, how ferociously he wooed her. It was like watching Othello. Their love story was peppered throughout the film, but I guarantee that it made a big impression on the audience. I don't care what anybody says, it was disgraceful.

  • Nadine | January 19, 2012 2:11 PM

    @RASHEED - You stated, "What's tripping me out about the response on here is that (with apologies), my sisters and a couple brothers have a fundamentally illogical issue with Red Tails. It's a WAR MOVIE! LOL! Set during an era of not only racial segregation, but gender segregation as well. I don't get how the filmmakers were supposed to shoehorn some sisters in it if the film is set mostly on the battlefield. Yes, I know there were Black nurses. Did they serve alongside the Tuskegee Airmen? If so, hey, my bad. Otherwise, WTF?" - you PLEASE SEE SNIPPET OF REUTERS REVIEW or FOLLOW LINK FOR FULL ARTICLE. "Despite the weaknesses in the screenplay of this long-gestating project -- Lucas wanted to make the movie for at least two decades -- there are still moments that will stir an audience. These come primarily from two actors: Terence Howard, who plays a colonel who stubbornly takes on his superiors at the Pentagon to enable the airmen to fly meaningful missions, and David Oyelowo, as an ace pilot who gently courts a non-English speaking beauty from the Italian town near the airmen’s base." - Leah Rozen, Reuters

    Confirmed: They were able to "shoehorn" in a storyline featuring a woman.

  • Nadine | January 19, 2012 12:04 AM

    @RASHEED - For whatever reason, you have gotten comfortable casting aspersions on people with whom you disagree. Illogical? I don't like to get personal, I feel like it is a waste and I think people would rather discuss the issues at hand. As one can see from NAREN'S post above, once one starts grouping people and categorizing them as a tool to make their, the categorized group's, arguments somehow invalid and inconsequential, others join in and it eventually becomes a way to bully (which is, I'm sure, beneath you) and an excuse to not think deeply. I personally didn't address your earlier arguments because I believed them to be just... off, imho, and it would have taken a long time to break all of your points down... Your arguments BEGAN with incorrect assumptions and then just went all over the place (assuming people supported "THE HELP", this thing about women in the field of battle movies...yadda, yadda, yadda.) Your responses did not answer the question of Black women and their removal from the lives of THESE men only to be REPLACED by another type of woman (there isn't a complete absence of womanhood) while being instructed by the Red Tails PR machine and the "communidad" that Black people risk losing it all if they don't support a film that claims to have historical significance to Black People while cutting out almost every scene that had a Black woman in it (cause, they were filmed). It seemed that your thesis, basically, was that women NOT being in war movies set on the field of battle was the norm and should not be an issue. Thing is, it's already been established that A woman IS in THIS movie with a storyline, so debating whether or not women belong or should be expected to be seen in war movies, in general, tangential. My thing is, no biggie. This is not new. This movie was NOT made for Black men and Black women and a nation, but for Black men and boys and White kids (male and female - like I said before), not unlike "our" music. So, everyone go see the movie please, but don't think that it will ever be okay to force Black women to spend their dollars on people who have no regard for their existence. THAT is what is ridiculous.

  • Mignon | January 17, 2012 10:48 PM

    Gee I didn't know they weren't using the actual wives of the airmen. It is disappointing that they didn't want to use black women, but hell Lucas gotta make his money back somehow...

  • Rasheed | January 17, 2012 4:55 PM

    Actually, Russ, that's exactly the message a successful Red Tails would be sending to Hollywood. Whether they listen, remains to be seen. The "glass-half-empty" contingent on here will, of course, insist that Hollywood will never change regardless of what we do, so why bother. Others of us hope for the best. Are we wearing rose-colored glasses? Maybe. But we, nor any one else, will know for sure until the receipts come in, right? The differences between Red Tails and the films you listed are that this film has a predominately Black cast, is a big budget action movie, and also boast Black writers and a Black director. You can't say that about those other movies. What's tripping me out about the response on here is that (with apologies), my sisters and a couple brothers have a fundamentally illogical issue with Red Tails. It's a WAR MOVIE! LOL! Set during an era of not only racial segregation, but gender segregation as well. I don't get how the filmmakers were supposed to shoehorn some sisters in it if the film is set mostly on the battlefield. Yes, I know there were Black nurses. Did they serve alongside the Tuskegee Airmen? If so, hey, my bad. Otherwise, WTF? Maybe the Coalition wanted some flashback scenes taking place stateside showing the Airmen with their women and if that's the case, well, that's not the film Hemingway, McGruder, Ridley, and Lucas set out to make. It's not fair to judge a film based on what you want it to be. If it's wack, so be it, but most of us haven't seen it yet, and can't really judge, right?

  • ME | January 17, 2012 2:35 PM

    Isn't Whoppi Goldberg in this movie?

  • Liza | January 17, 2012 12:27 PMReply

    Not supporting this just like I didn't support that BS movie "The Help". I refuse to lend my support to so-called 'Black' movies which completely ignore My Black experience or relegate me to 'sassy black woman' / maid. Guess what, Black girls are 1/2 of this Black experience so how can you possible have an "all black cast" yet leave out Black females? GTFOH. Black girls f'ing rock, and the younger generation is tired of having to support "Black" films while simultaneously being ignored & not having OUR diverse stories told.

    So this movie can kick rocks. Black or not, I'm tired of only seeing Black dudes stories told. And I could give a care less if no more "Black" films are made. Good. None of these so-called "Black" films are representative of Black girls like me any way. I'll keep watching 'Awkward Black Girl' and Hollywood can keep making these stock "Black" films.

  • Elsit Jean | January 18, 2012 8:53 PM

    It's shameful that the movie everyone want to tell Black women to see, as an alternative way to see Black women on film, is entitled "Pariah". Seriously, I would boycott that quicker than Red Tails. Sorry, but Black women should not be presented as "Pariahs", or cut out of history.

    Pure evil at work in Hollywood. That is all.

  • mason | January 17, 2012 11:17 PM


    I love your anger, let's redirect this and write a script!

    But you should really check out Pariah, it's a story about a young black woman making her way in the world.

  • Rasheed | January 17, 2012 12:26 PMReply

    Is your issue with Red Tails that there is no Black female presence in the film or that they are never mentioned? I ask because your WWII film choices only support the latter...sorta. I challenged any members of the "Fuck-This-Movie Coalition of Bitter Black Folks" to name five WWII films SET IN THE FIELD OF BATTLE. I appreciate you taking that challenge because it at least stimulates dialogue and gets back to the fact that Red Tails is one movie. It can not be the catch all movie for the Black experience in WWII that some of you seem to want it to be. It's not a documentary. Let me type that again... It's NOT a documentary. Hell, it's not even a docu-drama. I heard somewhere that Lucas wants this to be part one of a trilogy. How do any of you members of the Coalition know that the other films won't deal with the wives/girlfriends? I guess none of us will ever know because the Coalition seems to be doing everything in their internet power to suffocate this film's success.

    Let's get back to your choices for a minute.
    1. Corelli's Mandolin is a romantic drama set during WWII. It's a "chick flick", not an action movie, which is what Red Tails is. Also, Mandolin is not set on the field of battle. It's set primarily in a village, which of course has a female population.
    2)Pearl Harbor was set in Hawaii, weeks before the U.S. had even entered the war. That film cynically tried to mimic the success of the Titanic by including a lame love triangle in hopes of getting that teen girl repeat business that made the Titanic on of the biggest box office successes ever. They failed, by the way. Pearl Harbor is also not set in the field of battle.
    3) Pvt. Ryan. This choice is really confusing, because other than a prologue scene with an aged Ryan and his family visiting the D-Day memorial, and a few office workers, there weren't any wives/girlfriends in this one either. The troops talked about their "girls back home" in a few scenes scattered throughout the film, but that's about it. I haven't seen Red Tails yet (be there on the 20th!!!) so I can't verify whether there are any scenes like that are not, but if that's all you, Gina, Richboy, Carey, etc are pissed off about... random bits of appeasing dialogue, then, yeah, you all should probably sit this one out. LOL!
    4) In Love and War. Never saw this one, and judging from the box office receipts, neither did anyone else. :D But, this too is a romantic drama with WWI, not II as a setting. Chick flick, not an action film.
    5) Bridge Too Far. Haven't seen this one in years, so I pop over to imdb and the first thing I see is the poster with pictures of what? Dudes! Not a female name in the main credits. Why? 'Cause it a war flick. 'Cause it's about a specific moment in WWII and not an examination of male-female relationships during that era.
    C'mon, Coalition. I love ya'll, but cut Red Tails some slack (at least until it's released and more people actually SEE it). It's about the pilots. Not their women, or children. Hell, the surviving Airmen who advised on the film didn't seem to have a problem with alleged admission. Why do ya'll?
    Oh, and point of fact about The Help. Did you see the director's cut or something, 'cause I don't remember ever seeing Viola Davis' husband. Octavia Spencer's husband was an offscreen voice, kicking her ass in yet ANOTHER negative display of Black men. But The Help gets a pass, right?

  • BONDGIRL | January 18, 2012 8:51 AM

    @RASHEED: My issue, firstly, is that the movie was banal. The dialogue was plodding, the supporting cast were caricatures, and the plotline was devoid of imaginativeness. It wasn't terrible, but certainly not worthy of the hype it's getting. Secondly, I wouldn't feel snubbed if there were no women at all mentioned a la Patton. However, the presence of an IRR leads to an appropriate amount of scrutiny, esp. as GINA's observation revealed, when you are asking black women to get on board. You should be asking white women to come see the film, since they are the demographic who made the cut.

  • Aunt Kee | January 16, 2012 10:37 PMReply

    Black soldiers during World War II, like Japanese-American soldiers and many of minority race, were restricted to the support lines or otherwise not allowed to participate; when they were, well. That makes a fantastic story. Look at how the 442nd Regimental Combat Team was the subject of the very successful 1951 movie "Go For Broke." The Tuskegee airmen had to wait a while before they got some attention...1995 saw "The Tuskegee Airmen" starring Laurence Fishburne, Cuba Gooding Jr, and Andre Braugher among other accomplished black actors. This story deserves several versions and interpretations. Those black men fought against all odds from 1941 to 1946--not only Nazis in the air but society's prejudices, their own prejudices and apparently--judging from this post and some of the comments--these prejudices remain. I don't see why more attention should not be paid to their stories. The story might seem cliché after all the attention given to "the Good War"--WWII (is any war good?) but frankly, I am thrilled this movie is coming out.

  • Ku-Klux Knight | January 16, 2012 10:23 PMReply

    OMG, I dont understand you black people, why are you so sensitive about racism? You exaggerate every single word and turn it into a racism.. unbelievable. and don't even try to write the word "black" with a capital letter. It's just sick. These types of movies are being created just for a check, just to do something for black community and get done with it. It's like to do some obligation and forget about it. black people are the same as white or asian or latino. Don't put yourselves in front of whites, don't pretend like you have to be treated as abused and poor race, that suffered in slavery. IT WAS A LONG TIME AGO! People that went thru slavery are not alive anymore, those times are GONE! So knock off all that "black" stuff and live the life as everyone else does!

  • Mignon | January 18, 2012 12:52 PM

    LOL whatever, ku or klu. He's the idiot here...

  • Jay | January 18, 2012 11:53 AM

    Uhhhh actually Mignon, inspite of his ignorance, he did get the name right... it is Ku not Klu.

  • Mignon | January 17, 2012 10:52 PM

    You're a joke right??!! I mean you gotta be, you came on a black forum with the name Ku-Klux Kinght!! Good one sir, good one! oh and fyi it's klu not ku! Ha! joke total joke...

  • Aunt Kee | January 17, 2012 12:01 AM

    Dear Ku-Klux Knight: PLEASE. Get educated. Try moving to another country. Get some experience. Get perspective. Maybe even get a life. Thank you!

  • patty | January 16, 2012 5:41 PMReply

    Big slap in the face to Michelle Obama too, the first ever Black First Lady. One of her main campaigns has been supporting military families and soldiers in every way.

    ANd Aaron McGruder and the other two BLACK MALE directors on this movie chose to leave out Black women, which could have taught young kids and teens just how much support Black women have given to gave Black men in the military, and others Americans in general.

    Michelle Obama should tell them all to shove it, and kiss her beautiful Black a*ss. F*ck these people, seriously. You can do nothing right for them - Black men like McGruder and co, or white racists women and men.

  • Aunt Kee | January 16, 2012 11:50 PM

    Women don't get a lot of attention in war films. Period. I'm not sure if this is a race issue. But I'm glad you brought up the gender issue. I am not an expert but it seems to me that the best war films featuring women are usually spy films.

  • rial | January 16, 2012 11:18 AMReply

    Ahh, white hollywood knows the power of IMAGE. Which means they know the power of pushing white women as the ultimate catch for black men, especially successful, intelligent heroic Black men. They know the power of sending that imagery around the world, so that Black men will gain more respect in the U.S. and internationally, and Black women will be degraded in the U.S. and internationally. To finally make a big budget movie about Black war heroes, the Red Tails, but then throw in an imaginary white woman to diss all the Black women who, while SUFFERING through the Jim Crow times that they lived in, but made sure to still love and support their husbands away at war, and raise their families, is nothing less than an utter INSULT to Black women. And really should be a slap in the face to Black men as well - that the idea that Black men - who were kept out of the Airforce and relegated to only military food service positions for so long, who had to conform to Jim Crow laws in their own country while going to Europe to fight for the freedom of white europeans, who upon their return form war were mistreated and STILL had to live under the racist and segregationist system of the U.S. - would then prefer that their Black girlfriend, wives and families be subjugated to the image of white woman, front-and-center, when finally honored on film is sad, and even terrifying if true. This is what you're asking Black people to support? Please.

    With African countries being bombed by NATO recently, and American troops already on the soil in Central Africa, is this movie preparing Black men mentally to go to war in Africa, and kill Black African women and their daughters with impunity because, yet again, Hollywood war propaganda is being put in place to devalue the lives and emotions of Black women?

    If the women Black men always choose are non-Black, that says they have love for others and not for us. And that spells danger for us - here and abroad as Black soldiers head overseas. Turn a blind eye to Black women, and save all your caring for white ones? This is what Hollywood is all about, and it seems as if Blacks in the media would get this.

    Also, every time any movie is made with a majority Black cast, Black people are given the old scare tactic of "you MUST see it or Black movies will never, ever, ever, EVER be made in Hollywood again. Well, many movies with all or majority Black casts have been made in Hollywood, in the past and up to now. The scare tactic is to get us in the theatres to absorb the harmful propaganda.

    And being that Red Tails is a movie about soldiers who went to fight Hitler, maybe Black people should start thinking about the power of propaganda - everyone knows that Hitler used propaganda (in film, images, and news) to have many millions of people slaughtered.

  • BONDGIRL | January 17, 2012 9:14 AM

    @Ghost, you have sidestepped the issue. You mentioned The Help, but not only did Viola's character have a husband, none of the black maids had a loving white one. As for Dysfunctional Friends (if that is the film you are referring to), all of the women were biracial and none of the men were; upholding the 400 yr old standard that a black woman is more beautiful the less black she is, whereas black men get to embrace full Mandigo qualitites. Yes, that is a problem anyplace colonialism has reared its ugly head. If all a black film has to do is be supported by the entire black community to get more, why did Spike Lee have to struggle to get School Daze made in 1988 even when The Color Purple blew the box office out of the water in 1985? It did better than white films like Out of Africa, received 12 Academy noms, and made $98 Mil. This is impressive for 3 reasons; 1. Adjusted for inflation, that is like $200 Mil today. 3. It is a hard-sell genre. 3. Domestically it did better than Out of Africa, which was a huge media darling and big stars (Meryl Streep & Robert Redford). Even with a powerhouse like Spielberg, fat gross receipts, and Oscar consideration it didn't endear movie execs to make more black films. Whoopi Goldberg recently said on The View that the industry turned their backs on making more black films, not the opposite. When will blacks learn? Nobody in history has ever gotten their freedom by appealing to the moral sense of the people who were oppressing them. - Assata Shakur Just because we show Jews how irrational they are, doesn't mean they'll just lift the status quo. It's a boys' club, plain and simple. Not gonna change, even if RT makes $1 billion.

  • Ghost | January 17, 2012 12:04 AM

    Turn a blind eye to Black women, and save all your caring for white ones? This is what Hollywood is all about, and it seems as if Blacks in the media would get this.
    Didn't we see that in The Help? Where were the black men and kids of those women at?

    And how many debates broke out when you had black men and women caring for each other in a film about the black women being too light skinned?

    Folks are hoping this film does decent so we can finally have film NOT from the Tyler Perry empire. So we can get some variety and tell other stories of our race. But we are not going to get that if every black film that doesn't feature blacks approved by Buffon Entertainment Television and the black media get trashed before they come out.

  • Aunt Kee | January 16, 2012 11:58 PM

    This post has made me think about cyclical warfare and the power of the image to convince people that war is heroic, glorious, and more than OK to commit. But WWII is the American legacy; this is the war that placed us as world watch dog. Cold War races for arms against the USSR and those nasty communists. Getting black people should be interesting to see what the turn out is for the movie. will the skeptics turn out? I'm still excited to see the movie but only because I think the story/narrative/history is great. It is true, though, that these kinds of films are propaganda for war, qualifying war, and making war OK/glorious/heroic.

  • Nadine | January 16, 2012 5:50 PM

    @BONDGIRL - Thanks... BTW, my tone re: the HBO version seemed off... I REALLY ENJOYED The Tuskegee Airmen (1995) starring Laurence Fishburne and Cuba Gooding, Jr. When it first came out, I was crying like a baby. Unfortunately it's not available for immediate download for one's mobile device which stinks. Watch before they "pull"...for those who haven't seen, enjoy!

  • BONDGirl | January 16, 2012 5:14 PM

    Excellent post, Nadine! I have more to say later, but for the time being...BRAVO!

  • Nadine | January 16, 2012 1:43 PM

    White Hollywood is intentionally lazy and hands over a lot of these projects to "Black insiders". Unfortunately, for the "BLACKS" to be insiders, they had to have played "the game" and likely sold their souls at the crossroads years ago. Black men in their pursuit of mass acceptance are pushing like HELL (although they do have their "yin" partners in crime - see white feminists and the "pursuit of cool" in America... wooo.. it would take all day for me to write about that and I just don't have the energy) to get that Black man/White woman narrative out there understanding that "this is their in"... this is the Black man's way to navigate the class system while sending Black women, who symbolize "need" and being of "low-class" (Welfare Queens, the word "GHETTO" which is used exclusively towards Black women despite the near disparate rates of Black women compared to Black men in college and with advanced/terminal degrees) as far away as possible; to a lower CASTE, even, rendering them as "untouchables". This movie is NOT for African-Americans...this movie, not unlike commercial rap music, is for commercial rap audiences which means the White kids (male and female) and Black men and boys...everyone else is an afterthought (Asian, Latino/Hispanic, East Indian...and Black women). This movie was written like a fake 50 cent song featuring Katy Perry... Because it is easy and most profitable, Black men of "power", in whatever the industry (Hollywood, music, general entertainment, corporate), have not been able to look past their own pride and wallets to consider how their actions might cripple the long fought gains of a community (see Steve Stoute and Carol's Daughter...*insert curse word*). To get Red Tails made was a MAJOR coup on the AMERICAN image; the ultimate example of patriotism in the U.S., this "Greatest Generation", Tom Brokaw so-labeled; an opportunity to make a real moment in THEATERS, but John Ridley went out like a needy sucka looking for dollaz and affirmation by inserting his desperation to be accepted into this heroic story...making the characters one-dimensional. I'd rather keep the HBO version in my library than this...thing, which shouldn't be a problem for Ridley...he wasn't checkin' for me anyway...

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