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Review - "Colombiana" (Well... It's Better Than "Transporter 3")

by Tambay A. Obenson
August 26, 2011 5:55 AM
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Reposting my review since the movie officially opens today, and all the discussion that follows in the comment section. Feel free to jump in...


What a silly little movie this is; at times fun, and even the occasional slick thrill, but ultimately laughable, B-movie tripe.

I probably should have guessed something was up when it was noted amongst members of the film press that Sony/Tristar (the film’s distributor) hadn’t scheduled the usual run of pre-release press screenings for Colombiana. Often when that happens, it’s an indication of how the distributor feels critical reaction to the film will be – in this case, negative.

In case you haven’t noticed, there hasn’t exactly been a wealth of reviews of the film thus far, despite the fact that it’ll be in theaters this week.

And all that’s unfortunate, given that it’s incredibly rare that an action movie of this caliber and prominence, with an international cast and crew of talents, features a lead that isn’t white and male.

Colombiana’s central appeal to many I believe is/was the fact that a black woman would, for once, be carrying the gun. But the gravity of that didn’t really register with me, because it’s just not a very good movie. In the end, it’s a forgettable *cheap* trick that’s better suited as a lazy Sunday afternoon rental, or cable TV watch.

So for those hoping this would be some kind of a nod to womens’ lib, I wouldn’t be brandishing any pom-poms just yet.

This is a movie for fanboys – emphasis on “boys;” both the young and old variety. I was in that group once, so I get it; I can see how this would play oh-so well to those who pissed on themselves in watching director Olivier Megaton’s last film, Transporter 3 – yet another piece of overcooked, mindless waste (though Colombiana is definitely a step up), also produced by Luc Besson, by the way. And just as our hero in that film, played by Jason Statham, bares his fit torso on numerous occasions, while annihilating goons in dense numbers, and sometimes simultaneously, for a good chunk of Colombiana, Zoe Saldana’s lean frame is, shall we say, exposed, as she also dispenses the baddies, frequently in attire that leaves little to the imagination.

Not that I’m complaining; although, some may have an extremely difficult time buying this 100-pound “skinny thing” (if I may) as a vengeful killer. And maybe taking that into consideration while making the movie, Besson and Megaton restrict her destruction to the use of weaponry, instead of fists and kicks of fury. Though worth noting is that her slenderness actually works to her advantage in certain sequences in which Saldana, as the vengeful Cataleya (which, by the way, translates as "Orchid" – “you know, like the flower” – a point that’s not-so-subtlety made throughout the film) has to maneuver her frame through extremely narrow cracks and crevices.

But her lack of physical size didn’t bother me as much as some other more improbable aspects of the movie; after all size doesn’t always automatically indicate strength and ability. I’ve seen David obliterate Goliath enough times to believe that - and not just in movies – so I wasn’t entirely distracted by Zoe in this role.

I’d even say that Ms Saldana comes out of this dubious thriller with her dignity intact. She does her best with the material she’s given (which just isn’t much). But she holds court here; she has to; she’s the star; otherwise the movie fails miserably, and this review would be even more pejorative.

And I'd be remiss if I didn't tip my hat to Mr Lennie James who has a much more plump role in this than marketing for the film indicates. He leads the FBI team of agents hunting Saldana's killer Cataleya, and is on screen quite a bit. He's a good actor; but like Zoe, his talents are mostly wasted here.

Colombiana is really just one cheesy, predictable affair. You've seen this all before, and done a lot better. Not that I was looking for something revolutionary, but the trailers did impress me enough that I was genuinely looking forward to the delivery.

The good thing I suppose is that it doesn’t try to be anything more than what it is. It’s not a boring movie. As already noted, Saldana delivers, for the most part, as our determined, steely-eyed, taciturn emotionally-troubled but tough action hero, capable of incredible physical feats – even as a little girl (you’ll watch in befuddled amazement as little Cataleya, played by 13-year-old Amandla Stenberg, escapes a group of baddies, as she leaps from high places, landing with confidence, jumps over obstacles, floats through windows, runs through busy narrow streets, eventually sliding through a sewer gap, much to the frustration of the armed men chasing after her. Obviously she gets away; but damn, I was hoping that there would be SOME explanation for how this little kid learned to move like she’d been trained by Jason Bourne).

Alas, none was given. So I guess the audience is expected to overlook such a glaring question mark; and it’s not the only one.

For its target audience, it’ll probably be a perfectly acceptable, albeit brainless PG-13 action thriller. Those looking for something more, dare I say adult and substantive, will be sorely disappointed, and should probably wait to catch this as a rental instead.

The bar just isn’t set very high here.

Director Olivier Megaton says he got his last name from his birthday: the 6th of August 1965, which was the 20th anniversary of the dropping of the Hiroshima A-bomb. Oh the irony…

While I don’t expect the film to bomb at the box office, I don’t think it’ll do big money here in the USA; but that’s not unusual for Besson films, which tend to make the bulk of their earnings in international markets, not in the states. However, Saldana’s presence in this might attract audiences that have mostly avoided past Besson actioners, like Transporter 3. Sure, fanboys will be there; however, I’d expect some ticket sales from fangirls/women too – maybe more than usual for a film like this.

Kudos to Zoe, I suppose, in what may be a film that we look back to in a few years as a career marker of some sort; this should certainly help improve her international presence and appeal, which should (hopefully) lead to a wide variety of work. There was talk of a sequel to Colombiana, as both she and Besson mentioned in a previous item we posted here. I certainly hope not. Though my opinion means nothing, especially if the film is a financial success. A Transporter-like franchise for Zoe might be brewing here, who knows...

But don’t take my word for it; see it for yourselves :)

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  • Mandla | September 1, 2011 7:14 AMReply

    Not really a whole lot to say here. Saw it yesterday. It's, as I thought, an extension of Natalie Portman's character in Leon with La Femme Nikita thrown in. The story was tepid. I'm a big Luc Besson fan. He knows how to pull these films off. I thought it was a great idea for Zoe to take role. Not too often we get to see sistas do the do physically and mentally on her opponent. She was always one step ahead.

  • Zeus | August 27, 2011 7:53 AMReply

    This review is spot-on. Sometimes I think being virtually starved for nonwhite leads in roles like this has made some of us more likely to disregard or not notice lacking quality, for the rarity of our leading presence in this genre. “Don’t be afraid to dream bigger, darling[s].”

    Wish there was a LIKE button for this comment.

  • dcmoviegirl | August 27, 2011 4:54 AMReply

    This review is spot-on. Sometimes I think being virtually starved for nonwhite leads in roles like this has made some of us more likely to disregard or not notice lacking quality, for the rarity of our leading presence in this genre. "Don't be afraid to dream bigger, darling[s]."

  • blaqbird | August 27, 2011 3:52 AMReply

    Well I finally saw Colombiana last night, and I agree with this review for the most part. I found a lot of the plot points ridiculous and laughed through a lot of it, but I didn't think it was terrible. I wish Michael Vartan had more to do than be the "love interest". He's a great actor and definitely deserved more. Overall it was an action-packed, predictable film. Saldana did a great job with what she was given, but I'm gonna need Luc Besson to do better with the writing.

    And can somebody please tell me why this movie was set in 2007 yet there was a picture of President Barack Obama on the CIA guy's wall??? Did I miss something here?

  • B | August 27, 2011 2:36 AMReply

    Everyone, it was AWESOME! Totally go see it. She’s not just half-naked and prancing about all cutesy – even though the trailer makes it look that way. She rocks in this film. As another commenter said, Zoe (and the little girl actress who plays her in the beginning) are better than the film. I can definitely watch this one again.

    It was NOT a B movie (yeah, the story could've been developed more, for instance to explain why things went down as they did with her dad and his peeps...unless I missed something). But the story wasn't about him - it was about Zoe's character, Catelaya.

    If any of you like The Professional (with Natalie Portman) from way back in the day, you'll like this movie. I was sad to see how empty the theater was. *okay, end endorsement*

  • saadiyah | August 27, 2011 1:37 AMReply

    I saw Colombiana earlier this evening and loved it. It was action packed and Zoe did a great job. I'm a Kill Bill fanatic and Colombiana reminded me so much of it. I wished they would have made up Zoe's character to be as beaten up as Uma's characters after her fights. That's the only thing that I would change.

    I hope it does well enough for a sequel. Zoe needs to do more action movies. The woman is super graceful.

  • Doyle Ray Taylor | August 26, 2011 12:07 PMReply

    Hi All - I saw the movie COLOMBIANA 2day and it was Great! You have to see this Must see Movie! 1st of all this is Not a (B) Movie and Yes it is better than Transporter 3 and Way BETTER Than SALT! This is one smart Action Summer time movie and Zoe is actually Better than the film itself. I can see it twice and I don't say that much about other films.

  • James W. Lewis | August 26, 2011 10:31 AMReply

    Zoe is becoming one of my favorite actresses, so I'm definitely doing to check it out. As for the IR scenes, I don't trip off them, although it does seem the small and big screens are introducing more IR couples to the mainstream. I see them all the time, now.

  • B | August 26, 2011 9:47 AMReply

    I'm seeing it tonight. I've watched and paid for plenty of other lame female-action hero films (staring Angelina Jolie), so I don't see any reason why I shouldn't see this one. In fact, I can think of a reason why I SHOULD see this one: a black female action hero. Yep, will pay for this any day over some stupid crap like The Help. Rarely ever do I get to see someone who looks like me (black and female) in the lead role of an action film. Besides, I don't care how silly this movie is, Zoe is all kinds of hot! Sista girl could get it. Come on, ya'll, stop with the shenanigans - when have we had a black woman action hero in a major film? Not since the 70s (and at least we don't have to watch Zoe get raped and degraded like Foxy Brown in that one movie).

  • naima | August 26, 2011 8:29 AMReply

    i'll have to pass on this. as much as i love the movies and will see almost anything featuring a person or persons (clearly) of african descent regardless of how they define themselves ethnically, culturally or nationally. i'll see it later on demand. shouldn't take long! a picture is worth a 1000 words. first things: fighting women do NOT fight in shorts and skimpy clothing. come on now. cuts and bruises to the naked skin we don't need when what we want to do is cut and bruise the other guy!

  • Geneva Girl | August 26, 2011 6:43 AMReply

    I am interested in seeing this to see Amandla Stenberg's performance. One review I read said that she stole the movie. I'm interested in her because she is playing a pivotal role in the Hunger Games.

    I'm just not sure if I'm willing to pay the Swiss price of $20 bucks for a ticket and a babysitter to see it. I did that for Attack the Block and felt if was worth it, but this looks like a renter to me.

  • Questions & Answers?!?!!! | August 26, 2011 6:09 AMReply

    In the end, it’s a forgettable *cheap* trick that’s better suited as a lazy Sunday afternoon rental, or cable TV watch.

    Lmao! The moment I saw the trailer I disliked the film. I still don't understand why there was so much hype associated w/ this film on S&A?

  • blaqbird | August 26, 2011 5:26 AMReply

    Man I missed the entire was a good one though....

  • AccidentalVisitor | August 26, 2011 5:13 AMReply

    {{{ The systematic elimination/lack of representation of healthy black love on the screen in mainstream movies cannot be denied. When you have Will Smith, unable to get a black love interest in “Hitch”, you know you’re in trouble.


    I don't why people resort to the "Hitch" example. The majority of Smith's onscreen love interests have been black women/women of African descent (whatever classification one wants to go by). This is the case even after Smith became a huge international box office attraction. The same can be said of virtually any black actor who became a box office star or household name. That cannot be said about black actresses who reach a certain level of stardom; in those cases the majority of onscreen love interests are non-black. This argument will keep going in pointless cycles until we recognize these certain truths.

    To me the biggest story of “Hitch” was not that Smith’s character was wooing a non-black female, the biggest story was that the studio balked at the idea of making that female love interest white. That was something even Eva Mendes, the Latina chosen for “Hitch”, publicly came out against even though she benefitted from the studio’s decision to not pick a white actress. Let’s face it the pairing of black people alongside a non-black Hispanic or an Asian person does not carry the enormous baggage of casting a black person with a white love interest on the big screen. So the fact that Hollywood would so blatantly avoid doing that for Will Smith who was rapidly becoming the top box office draw at the time speaks volumes. You are talking about a Hollywood that wants as many white faces in the lead roles of mainstream films as it can get, but decided it would rather have its two leads in “Hitch” as non-white rather than place Will with a white girl. That was a story worth being explored by the media but unfortunately it got hijacked by Newsweek’s Allison Samuels who instead went on her typical agenda and started crying about the exclusion of black actresses from roles opposite black actors (absurd). She even tried to make some phony point the lack of black love on the screen, but she was silent about this particular topic when it came to all the movies involving black women with white men that came before “Hitch” and the plenty of others that have come since. She was the one who wrote a column for Newsweek in which she championed the idea of Disney picking a non-black prince for the black heroine in “The Frog and the Princess”. That’s the type of hypocrisy that I pointed out in my previous post.

    Let me make my point of view clear. I don’t have anything against IR relationships. One of my sisters married a white guy and I gave her away (walked her down the aisle) during the marriage ceremony. I tend not to judge people for their relationships or their sexuality. I realize that black people can hide their own bigotry behind excuses of how we as a people have been oppressed by racist whites. I’m not some militant Afro-centric zealot who goes around wearing African clothing and making comments like “my beautiful black queen”. I abhor remarks I’ve come across like one from a black women on The Root who said she would not support Chiwetel Ejiofor’s movie about slavery because Ejiofor was in an interracial relationship. Not only was I not aware of whom Ejiofor was dating I also don’t find it any of my business and I certainly don’t look at is as a criteria for whether I should support someone’s work. Of course I’m not naïve. I do realize there are plenty of black people, including celebs, with their own self-hatred hang-ups. I don’t really care for them either but it is hard for me to tell what black celeb has this problem based upon simply what I read about him/her on the damn internet.

    I also don’t have a problem with IR being shown on screen involving black people. I encourage it though as long as there is a balance and yes that means black romances and black relationships. And those black relationships should not simply be made by black filmmakers, but by mainstream directors in mainstream films too. The people in this thread who dismiss that, who say they don’t care about seeing black love, are being short-sighted IMO. It doesn’t matter who you date or who you personally are attracted to. The vast majority of black people in the USA and overall around the globe date/marry other black people and their lives have every right to be presented in film as the love lives/family lives of white couples. But again I don’t have a problem with black characters being involved in interracial relationships.

  • AccidentalVisitor | August 26, 2011 5:07 AMReply


    Now with that out of the way let me point out that I’m tired of the double standards. Double standards such as how Hollywood can take the most beloved black female singers (Diana Ross, Whitney Houston, Beyonce, etc) and immediately place them in major motion pictures opposite white male love interests, but won’t pair white female singers such as Madonna, Britney Spears or (God forbid) and beloved country female star alongside a black male. I’m tired that when a black male becomes a star his stature could lead to needed breaks for young black actresses who will play his love interests, but young black male stars can’t nearly benefit from such scenarios when black females become stars because Hollywood likes to pair them with white guys almost exclusively. I’m tired of how the opportunities for black actors are being limited because Hollywood won’t allow them to get the chance to develop bigger followings by pairing them with white actresses in mainstream films, but in the same token Hollywood is allowing black actresses those types of chances such movies.

    The plantation mentality in which only white males are allowed to explore “the forbidden fruit” needs to stop. Yesterday, The playing field on that front needs to be more leveled. And when I read stuff from even folks on this site such as “well, that’s just how it is” I want to call them out on their bullshit. I don’t have to accept anything. This is not exactly a Civil Rights issue but still I refuse to accept a back-of-the-bus mentality by shrugging it off and going along. My wallet may not make much difference but nonetheless I do not have to continue to hand over my money to Hollywood movies that only present one view of IR. And, no, increasing the amount of representation of black-love on screen is not the only issue for me anymore. Just as it is understandable why a black actress would love to get a role which requires her to smooch Bradley Cooper it should also be just as understandable (and acceptable) if a black actor get picked to be lucky guy snuggling besides Olivia Wilde. That is true equality.

    It is nice that some black dudes like Will Smith can get roles as leads in big action blockbusters. Nonetheless there are a few other type of barriers black actors must break before one can say there remains no restrictions in the diversity of their roles and their potential to gain the largest possible followings. One of those barriers, whether one wants to hear it or not, is their potential leading ladies being limited only to black actresses and the acceptable Latina fill-ins. Folks seem to understand this when it comes to black actresses, but don’t seem willing to accept that when it comes to black actors.

    I’m not suggesting that the pairing of black women with white men has ever been extremely common or free of controversy. However it has also never been as divisive or as taboo in the movie industry as the pairing of black men with white women. When the day comes, if the day comes, that a studio picks a black male star and a white female star as the romantic leads for a major film is no big deal to those involved that is when huge progress has been made, about as huge as it can get.

  • AccidentalVisitor | August 26, 2011 5:05 AMReply


    Last of all the person who wrote that ladies such as Zoe Saldana are paired with white men because white people want to see themselves on screen fails to make any sense. White audiences don’t need and have never needed an IR onscreen romance to see themselves. They can see themselves just well in 99% of movies without ever having to look at someone like Zoe. Maybe the poster meant to say that when Zoe is the star of a film producers/directors want to pair her with a white male in order to better attract white viewers. Okay, makes sense but that is suggesting that only white moviegoers matter. But what about when the central character is a white male and the girlfriend role is given to a non-white actress? If the studios only care about white people why cast a non-white actress as the girlfriend/wife/lover? Does that mean maybe Hollywood does care about the money from the pockets of non-whites after all? And by casting non-white women is Hollywood taking for granted the ticket purchasing power of white women? Or maybe white female moviegoers are more secure than white males (or even black females even)? Too many questions result from such an absurd comment. Truth is EVERYONE likes to see themselves on the big screen, not just white people, and Hollywood wants every dollar it can snatch.

  • Laura | August 26, 2011 3:52 AMReply


    Do you really believe that Sandra thinks that "Zoe (or someone else) is obligated to like care about that [portraying black love] or "that ‘glamorous black love’ is part of Zoe’s interest or agenda or radar or whatever?"

    That can not be the case when Sandra implies that actors have no casting decisions in the statement; "When you have Will Smith, unable to get a black love interest in “Hitch”, you know you’re in trouble. He was just as recognizable then as he is now. The thing people don’t want to admit with Will and all other black alisters, is that they have no POWER. No real power to affect change."

    Also I believe Zoe's interest or agenda is getting the next gig.

    I know you are an actress, so you know better than Sandra and most other people commenting that actors have very little pull when it comes to casting. So the issue is not who Zoe want casted as the male lead.

    Dollars to donuts, the decision makers --people holding the purse strings-- don't give a flying f*ck about what Zoe's thinks or her "obligations".

    You state "As far as me - almost all of the movies that I pay to see at the theatre have black women in them - I just like seeing black women on screen. I like seeing people like me. If I am putting down that money, I generally want to be seeing a sister in some capacity."

    Well for Sandra maybe she feels like you however for her " - almost all of the movies that I pay to see at the theatre have [nuanced and complexed] black [relationships] in them - I just like seeing [nuanced and complexed] black [relationships] on screen. I like seeing people like m[yself in nuanced and complex black relationships]. If I am putting down that money, I generally want to be seeing [us] in some capacity."

    But "Because white people want to see themselves in the movies THEY ARE PAYING FOR."

    Then you should have no problems if THEY only offer you roles as maids, mammies (in their various incarnations) or some poverty porn protagonist. For THEY are not responsible for Sandra ever see "Black Love" to her satisfaction on the silver screen any more than are to you.

    Finally, let's drop Zoe Saldana's personal life from the discussion. I've known for a while that her fiancee is a white male. It still ain't got jack to do with her getting the next gig and who the money people will hire as her male co-lead.

    For you it may be very personal, thus it hits home. But for the rest of us, it's irrelevant.

  • Nadell | August 26, 2011 3:43 AMReply

    I am totally not understanding your disapproval or disinterest in this movie. If it is your opinion of writers/producers/directors not coming up to par -- then I am still not in your loop.

    Nothing was said of Kill Bill's lead actress -- I see similarity b/w she and Zoe in terms of body-frame but I doubt she was criticized for not being brawny enough. As well as I think that movie was long drawn and there were areas where the dots were not connected but overall the movie was entertaining.
    Is it because we finally have a woman of color portraying a vigilante and we take issue? I guess the same will be said for the remake of Charlie's Angels...mind you, there will be a woman of color as one of the angels. Watch your back, Annie Ilonzeh, the folks that be will be on attack w/ your role. Or maybe not, her love interest will be a man of color so you'll be fine.....

  • sandra | August 26, 2011 3:13 AMReply


    You went off on so many tangents, while avoiding the crux of the argument altogether.

    [i]As an Hollywood actress, it makes sense that when you ‘expand’ to wider cultural audience, the people you are paired up with will change. Why? Because white people want to see themselves in the movies THEY ARE PAYING FOR.

    Usually white people who are buying tickets want to see themselves in the movies.
    [b]And black people don't? You've probably missed the various research that indicate that black folks have enormous power at the box-office due to repeat viewing and extremely high attendance.[/b]

    You say that you are an actress; it wouldn't hurt to open your eyes and recognize the business for what it is and understand THE GAMES that are being played all the time. It's important to understand the POWER of images that are exported around the world. Films can entertain, yes. But they are the most powerful sociological weapon out there. People often form opinions on groups they've never meant through film.

    [i]I can stick my head outside and see plenty of happy black couples, or I can call my parents.[/i]

    [b]WTF? I'm glad that's enough for you, but you'll find that the majority of people of color want to be faithfully (complex/multi-layered way) represented on the big screen, like their white counterparts. [/b]

    Where did I mention that Zoe couldn't be in an IR? Where did I mention her needing to have an agenda? I didn't say that Zoe should be a poster girl for black love (or any other "cause"). I simply indicated that I noticed a trend (black love gets pushed aside once an actor reaches a certain level of fame). This fact has also been stated by various famous black actors; I'm not making this stuff up.

  • CareyCarey | August 26, 2011 1:59 AMReply

    WOW! I feel so sorry for Susan. The big hitters came out on this one. I sure wasn’t going to jump in that brair patch. Ooooh no, cuz I would have been in deep water. I mean, Zoe Saldana is going to do her thang, and I ain’t mad at her.

    From the jump, I don’t do these types of movies, and truthfully, if she walked in front of me - today - I wouldn’t know who she was. Really, I couldn’t tell you what movie she was in until I read this post.

    But check this, the following might have got me in a little dust.

    "A" said: “I have no particular preference to see BW or BM in relationships with each other. Not everybody is looking for ‘black love’ in movies – I’m certainly not. but that kind of silly stone age thinking does not hold me back, I’ll be right there with my (white) boo friday night! We will be sitting up in front! :)”

    Huuuuummm, not looking for black love?.... Under the boardwalk with her boo, Vanilla Ice Ice Baby? I believe many black people have a problem with that stone age thinking. I and millions of other black folk ain’t trying to see Mr. Charlie kissing on The Help. I put my money on black love.

    And man, Sergio made me laugh with this: “I think Orville is trying to get laid (maybe by Zoe) by showing what a “sensitive” and “understanding” man (assuming that he is one) he is towards women. You wanna go after misogyny then go after me, you young punk”

    Damn, Sergio sure has been laying down a scratch line as of late.... “And maybe I did mean to deride coke bottle glasses wearing geeks who like sci-fi and comic book films. What are going to do - you gonna shoot me?” - Sergio

    Can’t we all just get along? :-)

  • Neziah | August 26, 2011 1:59 AMReply

    Hmm...well, I didn't expect much, but since this is an action film starring a woman of color, I will see it eventually.

  • A | August 26, 2011 1:46 AMReply

    Whew – this is the comment section to end all comment sections!!

    So crazy - this is my last crazy very long comment and I’m so out! ☺

    Sandra -

    'This is not just for Zoe who is in a real life IR; it is a fact for all actresses of color who are becoming hot property as defined by Hollywood. There’s nothing wrong with the men she’s being paired with. I never said so. The point that I made was that black love has very little chance of being portrayed (lovingly and with glamour) past a certain point.'

    @ Sandra And my point is - even if this were true, so what? I'm honestly not trying to be rude or diss you, it's a real question - What makes you think Zoe (or someone else) is obligated to like care about that? What makes you think that 'glamorous black love' is part of Zoe's interest or agenda or radar or whatever? On screen or off?

    And I only mention off -screen only because you seem to be sugessting that all the Hollywod IR matchups are a BAD thing that she should have some sort of personal problem with . . . . . . are you? Or maybe I’m misunderstanding you?

    Are you saying that 'black love' need to be featured in Zoe Saldana's movies? If so, please explain to me why?

    As an Hollywood actress, it makes sense that when you ‘expand’ to wider cultural audience, the people you are paired up with will change. Why? Because white people want to see themselves in the movies THEY ARE PAYING FOR.

    Usually white people who are buying tickets want to see themselves in the movies.

    As far as me - almost all of the movies that I pay to see at the theatre have black women in them - I just like seeing black women on screen. I like seeing people like me. If I am putting down that money, I generally want to be seeing a sister in some capacity. There are exceptions, like I want to see this Wuthering Heights movie, or I saw that Inception. But in general . . . . .

    I think you would have an argument if there were no media images of ‘same race’ black relationships, I would also find that very disturbing. But there are plenty of 'black love' (whatever that term means to you) movies to go see - and not just Jumping the broom and Tyler Perry.

    If you have Netflix, you should go look the romance dvd section - there's a whole section for AA indie films with romantic relationships. I know cause I’ve rented a few. Not because they ‘black love’ but because they look cute.

    As you know, there are all black cast shows on tv where the people have relationships – isn’t there another new black network called Bounce coming up?

    I can stick my head outside and see plenty of happy black couples, or I can call my parents.

    If that's something you need/want to see, there is nothing stopping you.

    I am trying hard not to trample on people's beliefs on this issue, because some folks are so sensitive about it - but I really do it all confusing. . . . . . what’s the problem you're having?

  • Cynthia | August 25, 2011 12:28 PMReply

    Wow...walked away for a second and came back to a war zone here!

    It's interesting how I just checked on past reviews of "Salt" and, although most reviews were mixed, Jolie was often lauded for her performance. One major site actually states..."most critics seem impressed by Angelina Jolie's fierce performance." Hmmm... That strikes me odd because I don't think Zoe's getting that kind of reaction.

    And I hated "Salt" about ridiculous.

    Anywho, here's Tambay's review of "Salt":

  • sandra | August 25, 2011 12:17 PMReply


    [b]Whatever she does "at home" has nothing to do with the argument being made here and IS NONE OF MY BUSINESS. The point that I was making is that once you cross a certain threshold, your image is put through a machine. The change is apparent in the overwhelming black love interests PRE-AVATAR and the overwhelming white love interests POST-AVATAR. [/b]

    This is not just for Zoe who is in a real life IR; it is a fact for all actresses of color who are becoming hot property as defined by Hollywood. There's nothing wrong with the men she's being paired with. I never said so. The point that I made was that black love has very little chance of being portrayed (lovingly and with glamor) past a certain point.

  • A | August 25, 2011 11:47 AMReply

    Kia- ‘Excuse me, let me revise before the Race Police charges me: “Latino and Black”. Even though the industry sees her as “black”.’

    @ Kia - girl you made me laugh with this one. I didn't want to be the one to say it. All the twisting certain black people go through – ‘she's not really black, she's British’, ‘she's not really black, she's Dominican’ and ‘so and so great grandma wasn’t a slave, so she don’t count ‘. . . . - to EVERYBODY else with eyes, she is just ' hot black chick'.

    That's it. This stuff is mostly debated among certain types of race obsessed black people. For the rest of the world, people who look black are just black. That’s it. In China she is black. In Germany she is black. Among 95% of the people here in the US, she’s just black.

    And she's proud of her race so what's the problem? The girl is on the cover of this month’s Ebony magazine– how long will this nonsense be debated?

    Sandra – ‘Zoe is just made to go through what Halle and Jlo went through before her. They must be diluted and whitewashed for the Hollywood marketing machine. It’s disgusting and sad.’

    Yes, poor Zoe being forced to make out with Bradley Cooper . . . . . come on now . . . . .

    Sandra . . . . . . . . . First of all, Saldana is in a real life IR relationship. Are people even aware of that? They’re not ‘making’ her anything with Sam Worthington that she is not doing for free at home every night. ☺

    Second of all, I find it offensive to suggest that a BW in a IR relationship is ‘diluted’ and ‘whitewashed’. That is YOUR view. It is not shared by many BW such as myself.

    I have no particular preference to see BW or BM in relationships with each other. Not everybody is looking for ‘black love’ in movies – I’m certainly not.

    That is the truth. I would be happy to see a cutie like Dwayne Johnson or Saul Williams (what happened to him?) in the boyfriend role in this, but I am not complaning about Mr. Vartan – he’s a little boring, but handsome. Could be worse.

    I will be buying a ticket to see that Wuthering Heights indie film because it looks interesting, I don’t care that it’s IR BM/WW, which I assume it is.

    I think Mr. Andre Braugher is very sexy and I will be watching for the SVU episodes with Oliva Benson.

    I choose what to watch for a variety of reasons – and there are just certain men that I am a fan of and certain ones I do not like. Who they are dating – on screen (or in their private lives) – does not really effect me. If the onscreen chemistry is good, I’m good.

    I understand that people have strong viewpoints on this issue, but please realize that not every black woman looks at this issue the same way, or chooses their movies this way.

    Maybe Zoe has a different point of view. Maybe not. How do we even know?

    There’s a lot of assumptions going on here . . . . . .

  • T'Challa | August 25, 2011 11:24 AMReply

    I'll check this..for free of course, regardless of the Hollywood BS, it's a brainless action flick starring a sista. I'm not mad at that.... And SMH at some of you American Black folks that think you have to be born in the US to be "Black". Same cats that said Obama wasn't Black enough cuz his ancestors didn't come from slavery.. STFU.

  • sandra | August 25, 2011 11:04 AMReply

    For the most part, once you cross over, [b]it's a wrap for actresses of color to portray strong loving relationships with actors of their race onscreen.[/b] Zoe is just made to go through what Halle and Jlo went through before her. They must be diluted and whitewashed for the Hollywood marketing machine. It's disgusting and sad.

    @Suzan, before crossing over, Zoe had mostly black love interests: Heart Specialists, Premium, Blackout, Six Degrees (series), Drumline,...but once she became "property of Hollywood" (AVATAR) things had to change.

    The systematic elimination/lack of representation of healthy black love on the screen in mainstream movies cannot be denied. When you have Will Smith, unable to get a black love interest in "Hitch", you know you're in trouble. He was just as recognizable then as he is now. [b]The thing people don't want to admit with Will and all other black alisters, is that they have no POWER. No real power to affect change.[/b]

  • Laura | August 25, 2011 10:39 AMReply

    @Accidental visitor.

    Is the casting of white male as a love interest of Zoe Saldana doing? That's my point. The premise of Suzan argument is that Zoe Saldana "aint Black" because she does not espouse it in a way the meets Suzan criteria and she paired with white male leads as "lovers/partners."

    But I understand your frustration. All I can say don't watch the film. Don't support films like that does that. And you should not have to defend your decisions for not supporting the film or any film that rubs you the wrong way.

    It is your money.

  • lee | August 25, 2011 9:58 AMReply

    Glad to see a woman in color in that type of role. For that alone I would go to see this film. I can't quite wrap my mind around Saldana as an action hero. I know she was quite physical in the Losers but I just couldn't completely believe it. I would definitely give her a chance in this film. I much rather go see this than the Help.

  • AccidentalVisitor | August 25, 2011 9:56 AMReply

    {{{ I know you made your last post.

    I agree—you should not support a movie that does not appeal to you.

    Moreover, Zo (nor any other actor) dictates who their movie love interest will be). That decision is left up to movie producers and “studio” people.


    A valid point. However over the years I have paid for movie tickets for far more films with black women paired up with white men than I did for movies with black men paired with white women. Of course this is because there has been FAR more of the latter than of the former. As a black male I've been a good sport about it. But with this disparity continuing to grow even more one-sided there is a point in which some of us black males reach a certain level of fatigue. Hollywood essentially disses us black amles when it goes down this road again and again with black actresses while at the same time ensuring white actresses stay out of the reach of any non-white male star. Why, I must ask, must I continue to support this? I know if the roles were reverse black female ticket buyers surely wouldn't. Not in large numbers at least/

    Another thing I tire of is the double standard amongst many black females. Those that love a movie like "The Bodyguard" but would not support such a flick if it had starred Denzel and Shania Twain. The type that HATED "Kevin Hill" because Taye Diggs had too many non-black love interests, but LOVE "Hawthorne" even though Jada's character has no black love interests. Not saying all black women display that type of hypocrisy but I have to tell you most that I know (the majority being great gals) mostly fit this description.

  • Jug | August 25, 2011 9:53 AMReply

    Wow, you leave for an audition and come back to DRAAAAAMMMAAAAA!!! LMBAO

    Zeus, I get what you're saying. I echo Laura's sentiment, if I can go see EXPENDABLES or TAKEN (loved it & I think COLUMBIANA has more in common with), then I can go see this.

    Yes, there are some "obligation" films I don't break my neck to see, because they will always be made. There will always somebody with disposable funds producing a "The first black whatever" or kitchen sink drama & we all know there be maaaany hood/gangster flicks (NEW JACK CITY is STILL one of my favorites). Honestly, that's not a bad thing. They need to be made. But it's the other types of films, especially those that pique my interest as a PERSON, not just a person of color, that I want to see more of us in-especially when the focus isn't about being "black".

    Political Intrigue/espionage, westerns (please, not POSSE tho), sci-fi/fantasy, romance, etc. These genres where we are not typically represented or are an afterthought, but yet speak to my tastes. Plus the kid, & actor, in me wants to say "Damnit, see I can be there too!"

    Come on...who didn't love Wesley in PASSENGER 57?! What's wrong with that? LOL

  • Laura | August 25, 2011 9:22 AMReply

    I know you made your last post.

    I agree -- you should not support a movie that does not appeal to you.

    However, just because someone does not identify being Black to your liking does not negate that they are of African ancestry.

    Moreover, Zo (nor any other actor) dictates who their movie love interest will be). That decision is left up to movie producers and "studio" people.

    Unfortunately, statements such as "I also have to question if Zoe has ever had a Black love interest in any of her movies- you know since she identifies herself as such." AND " although you have identified Zoe as Black- she has not nor ever will. She does not consider herself Black. " Shows that you are a lazy thinker, at best.

    One thing about commenters on S&A. We challenge those commenters who speak of the cuff. We will challenge your statements good or bad. We are that passionate about the image making of African people of the diaspora.

    So bring your A-game if you going to make potentially incendiary statements.

    Thank you for your comments. Hopefully we will come by again.

  • Suzan | August 25, 2011 8:45 AMReply

    Last post – I find it quite infantile for posters to call names or comment on one’s intellect when in disagreement- very petty and speaks volumes to your character= not a good look. Needless to say if you don’t want to discuss race then you may want to revisit the name of this Blog’s description- On Cinema of the African Diaspora.
    Bottom line for me- I am not a Zoe hater nor a Zoe Stan like several of you. The review of this movie is a justification of what I thought it would be. A skinny sweaty looking chick in short outfits- sorry not for me.
    I can not support movies that don’t appeal to me- I also have to question if Zoe has ever had a Black love interest in any of her movies- you know since she identifies herself as such.

  • liza | August 25, 2011 8:05 AMReply

    Can't wait to see the Black Latina in Action!!!! Go Zoe!

  • Kia | August 25, 2011 8:05 AMReply

    Excuse me, let me revise before the Race Police charges me: "Latino and Black". Even though the industry sees her as "black".

  • Kia | August 25, 2011 7:57 AMReply

    Taking a quick break from working on getting my screenplayabout a strong black woman, w/ no psychological issue, running things, into the right hands.

    Anyway, I've made my points earlier. I'm back because,,, I'm just having a hard time understanding:

    a. Why women aren't supporting this. Who gives a shit if it's not oscar worthy--what action film nowadays is? Black woman LEAD in a mainstream action film that's not a comedy or a satire--Hell Yeah, I'm supporting that. It's a start in the right direction. Period. Maybe the next one will spend time developing the story some.

    b. Aliens vs. Predators as example of "good" --Sanaa had to share the screen with a friggin Alien, come on--but it didn't matter, I was still there cheering her on. At least Sigourney was the headline--not to mention Alien/Aliens was a thousand times better.

    Have a good day yall.

  • Laura | August 25, 2011 7:56 AMReply

    Hey Zeus

    I don't believe obligation films. (That's what I hated the most about "The Help" -- it was marketed as an obligation film) But if I can give other dumb action films a chance, why not Columbiana. With a sister as a lead to boot. Oh yeah!!!!

  • Zeus | August 25, 2011 7:46 AMReply

    So this is an obligation film for some.

    And this doesn't have anything to do with the gender of the main character. That's WEAK. Some folks don't like the movie, deal with it.

    And clearly either missed or fell asleep in history class, either way, you have the internet, no excuse for being that ignorant of the history of African people and the slave trade. NONE.

  • Laura | August 25, 2011 7:31 AMReply

    I'll chime in.

    I'm gonna see this film because it has a black female action lead. So sue me.

    Angelina Jolie's "Salt" was worthy of Mr. Whipple.

    I can't get over that I actually paid to see that super turd --with an hour and a half of my life. (Which I can never get back btw).

    Do I expect "La Femme Nikita --no; Aliens vs. Predator --no, The Long Kiss Goodbye --no. The Bourne Triology

    But what the hay. If I can sit through "Salt" without blowing my brains out. I can definitely sit through Columbiana.

  • A | August 25, 2011 6:37 AMReply

    Won't even respond to Suzan's ignorance - she sounds so dumb, I kind of feel bad for her.

    I agree with saadiyah and Jug and Kia. I have to say, I'm kinda surprised at the comments here.

    And I can't believe, after Precious and The Help, that there are black women who will STAY AT HOME this weekend and not support this film. To have a young black women in this kind of role -we already brought our tickets online!

    I bet you guys ALL turned out for Salt though right? Black women will ride for Angelina 'anorexia' Jolie but Zoe is too skinny right? And everybody went to the Apes movie? And X-men? And Green lantern? And all the others. But you won't suport sister Zoe?

    I have met some people who are against this movie because it's a black woman in an IR relationship, (of course people would rush out in droves for a black man with a white woman, like luke cage) but that kind of silly stone age thinking does not hold me back, I'll be right there with my (white) boo friday night! We will be sitting up in front! :)

    I don't know about reviews for action films, because we went to see that X-man movie based on all the good reviews, and it was not very good - to me it was insulting. (I think Shadow and Act also didn't like it though, to be fair).

    I think Zoe is fly, talented, athletic and very well suited for this genre. It's an action flick. I’ll give it a shot. Enough said.

    TEAM ZOE! Let's just pray that it's a hit!

  • sandra | August 25, 2011 6:33 AMReply


    Zoe has always claimed her African heritage proudly. What more must she do in order to obtain approval from the "REAL BLACK FOLKS"? I'm sure she'd want to know once and for all. This whole "debate" over whether or not she's black is a surreal one for anyone with properly functioning eyes.

    As per Zoe...

    “When I go to the D.R., the press in Santo Domingo always asks, “¿Qué te consideras, dominicana o americana?” (What do you consider yourself, Dominican or American?) I don’t understand it, and it’s the same people asking the same question. So I say, time and time again,[b] “Yo soy una mujer negra.” (“I am a black woman.”) [They go,] “Oh, no, tú eres trigueñita.” (“Oh no, you are ‘dark skinned’”) I’m like, “No! Let’s get it straight, yo soy una mujer negra.” (“I am a black woman.”)” [/b] - Zoe Saldana -

  • Monique | August 25, 2011 6:29 AMReply

    Still going to see it, I would rather spend my money on this than The Help any day of the week but that's just me.

  • JMac | August 25, 2011 6:14 AMReply

    **jump in**

    Zoe has considered herself black. Exact words were black Latina. Please do your research first. Oh, and she's on Ebony magazine this month. Check out her article.

    **jump out**

  • saadiyah | August 25, 2011 6:10 AMReply

    Why on Earth does the argument about Zoe Saldana's race pop up on every post I see about her? If you go to IMDB, she does say she's a Black woman. And if she claims Latina (which she does AS WELL), why does it seem to anger Black American women?

    I don't see an Oscar in Zoe's near future, but I sure as hell don't understand the hate she receives from a lot of Black women. If her acting or roles aren't your cup of tea that's one thing, but the race discussions and comments about Zoe (or her leading men or real life partner) are just plain tired and dumb.

  • Sergio | August 25, 2011 6:09 AMReply


    Half my relatives are Dominican (How do you think I got the name Sergio instead of DeShawn or something like that ?? - THANK GOD!) and believe me we ALL consider ourselves black. And don't know any Dominican who doesn't. (Sammy Sosa is clown and a dope and everyone knows that and using him as a pathetic example doesn't prove your case) )

    Hell there are tons of African-Americans who will tie themselves up in knots claiming that they're everything else but black. Most Africans, during the slave trade, were sent to Latin America not the U.S. and that doesn't make them less black. That is unless you feel that unless you can trace your roots to Mississippi you're not authentically black

    But then I'm sure you feel that I shouldn't be even be writing on this site since I'm evidently not black enough for you What are you going to about that? Have me deported?

  • Suzan | August 25, 2011 5:42 AMReply

    Orville- Why do some ppl always want others to be Black when they don't identify themselves or even want to be Black? I won't even entertain your questions about history/ geography. The last time I checked Sammy Sosa is now the color of a manila folder. Bottom line- Zoe does NOT CONSIDER herself Black so who am I to consider her that when she doesn't herself?
    At the end of the day this movie looks like a knock-off of Salt. Scratch that even A. Jolie had more clothes on than Zoe does. Her role in Avatar was a joke. Once again the great w hope must save the village... - is her love interest in this movie a man of color? Enough said. I'll save my movie money for something with more substance and originality.

  • Jug | August 25, 2011 5:29 AMReply

    I'm still going to see it, because this is no more ridiculous than SALT or THE EXPENDABLES. When is the last time we saw a Black female action lead?

    Going into an action movie and expecting great art is a no-no. You really can't even expect logic half the time. What you can expect, is a well done ACTION film, without ridiculous puns (Arnie) & a million bad guys killed on one clip (Stallone) & killing a helicopter with a runaway cop car (Willis). Tho I'm a story guy, it still has to basically work technically because It's nothing more than melodrama, made for us to cheer when the bad guy "gets it". Some are waay over the top, some are just right, but very few-if ever again-will be a perfect pitch DIE HARD.

    And let's be real, this is Luc Besson. The only reason this dude is still making movies (aside from having made capital) is because he is Michael Bay, Jr, meaning he understands the "baser instincts" of the average audience goer and doesn't push beyond good taste ('good' used VERY liberally).

    TAKEN was a beast & I think COLUMBIANA will be a fun ride, long as they don't try to put too much "logic" into it, which in the script there was juuuust enough.

    Zoe in a catsuit...yeah I'm there LMAO

  • Sergio | August 25, 2011 5:28 AMReply

    I think Orville is trying to get laid (maybe by Zoe) by showing what a "sensitive" and "understanding" man (assuming that he is one) he is towards women.

    Where is the misogyny in Tambay's review because I sure don't see it. and neither does anyone else who has read it except for you for the reason I've just explained. You wanna go after misogyny then go after me, you young punk

  • Orville | August 25, 2011 5:22 AMReply

    Suzan have you ever taken a black history or Caribbean studies course? Yes Zoe is Dominican and part Puerto Rican but that doesn't mean she's not black. Latin is a culture and not a race. Do you not realize the African disapora is much larger than just the United States? Black Americans aren't the only blacks on this planet!

    Zoe Saldana is a black Hispanic just like Pedro Martinez, Sammy Sosa, and millions of other black Latinos whose heritage is from the Caribbean and South America.

    There are millions of black people in the Caribbean, South America, and Central America whose first language is Spanish and Portuguese and not English.

    I ask this question because if you did you would know the Dominican Republic has a huge black population and Puerto Rico also has a black population.

  • Suzan | August 25, 2011 5:17 AMReply

    @ Zeus on the Gaunt- LOL That is so fuuny and on point... To all of the posters on the subject of color- although you have identified Zoe as Black- she has not nor ever will. She does not consider herself Black. That being siad- I for one have no issue with Tambay's review and have NO desire to see a wanna be Salt action film. It's tired (see Zoe in the Loosers)- she's a one hit wonder with Avatar and even that formula was a disgrace- The YT saves the day once again...

    FYI- Zoe Saldana was born Zoe Yadira Saldaña Nazario[4][5] or Zoe Yadira Saldana Nazario[1] in Passaic, New Jersey,[2][6] United States. Her father, Aridio Saldaña, is Dominican, and her mother, Asalia Nazario, is Puerto Rican.[7][8][9][10]

  • BluTopaz | August 25, 2011 5:09 AMReply

    "Can the ladies say something, please."

    Yeah, as I remember Cleopatra Jones is still in my Netflix queue...

    I don't dislike Zoe, but don't get the hype either. Why am i obligated to get excited about a Black woman running around with a gun just because that's an anti-slave image? Sure it would be fun to see one of us kicking butt, but the clips I've seen are dry, imo. I'll watch The Long Kiss Goodnight or Strange Days again before sitting thru Colombiana.

  • tambay | August 25, 2011 5:06 AMReply

    @Orville - you can't take my review seriously yet you take the time to respond to it quite passionately? Obviously I hit a nerve. Maybe you're in love with Zoe Saldana, .. or something I don't know.

    I'd like you to highlight the so-called misogyny in my review, and I'll gladly take you to task on every single point, instead of making some grand gesticulations.

    Ah yes, in your POV I'm one of those "prejudiced" men who wants to see black women in subservient roles like in films like "The Help." So that must be why I thoroughly trashed that movie as well; and not only that, I emphasized the point that I'd prefer to see Viola Davis in a much more commanding, brash role.

    But, by all means, please respond with line items that highlight my misogyny and contempt for women in action movies.

    Not that it will change how I feel about the movie, but I gather what you're talking about is beyond just this one film.


  • Orville | August 25, 2011 4:57 AMReply

    Hello Vanessa Martinez, I respectfully disagree with your comment about Tambay. Would Tambay trash this film so badly is a black male was the lead and not a black woman? Somehow I doubt it. Tambay's comments about Colombiana are extremely sexist and dismissive. There is a paucity of action movies released with a female lead and this one has a black woman as the lead. The tone and texture of Tambay's review is extremely sexist. I don't think anyone believes Colombiana is supposed to suddenly be a revolution for women in film. The movie is just entertainment but I think the movie is refreshing. Zoe is obviously trying to break down barriers that still hold women of colour back in Hollywood in relation to race and gender.

  • Vanessa Martinez | August 25, 2011 4:52 AMReply


    If you read the few reviews out except for like one, Tambay's review is pretty much in line with the others. One of the reviews flat out trashed Zoe Saldana's performance saying the film could have been better had it not been for her acting.

    Do a search, Tambay is not alone in this one. I really don't think it's about misogyny at all.

  • Orville | August 25, 2011 4:46 AMReply

    I think Tambay's review is quite lame and his misogyny is quite abhorrent and disappointing. I cannot take it seriously at all. I don't think anyone would believe Colombiana was supposed to change Hollywood or anything. This is an action flick BUT it is a rare action flick where the woman is in charge and is the lead is a black woman.

    Of course, Tambay does not discuss the fact that maybe Zoe chose the role because she didn't want to be the stereotypical damsel in distress like so many other action movies. The same criticisms Halle Berry and Charlize Theron got when they tried to make action movies some men just don't want to see women in action films. It seems to me some men prefer women to be in genres that is more acceptable their own prejudices.

    So what if Zoe is slim do people make a bit deal about Matt Damon being short? The misogyny in this review is extremely disappointing and disturbing.

  • saadiyah | August 25, 2011 4:46 AMReply

    I absolutely love Zoe Saldana to pieces and will see the movie tomorrow night. I go to the movies *sometimes* simply for mindless entertainment. It's refreshing to see a Black women in a non-stereotypical Black woman role. My favorite types of movies are action, adventure, & fantasy and it sounds like Colombiana will fit the bill.

    I'll take something like Colombiana over The Help, Precious or anything by Tyler Perry any day. I have a solid hold on reality already and don't need to be taught or reminded that Black women have hard lives.

    I can't wait to see Zoe in action!

  • Darkan | August 25, 2011 4:34 AMReply

    @ Kia *And when Nicole does leap up to A list status—which will be shortly, you’ll be on here bashing her as well.* That's not true. You see, I was never a fan of Zoe's work. She hasn't done anything for me to be onboard yet. You didn't read my post clearly. You are making this a thing of sexism. One of my favorite films of all time is Aliens. Seeing Sigourney Weaver toting a gun and kicking ass was assume and I still get the willies watching her go down to get Newt but the story and plot was executed well. I understand your fight for a black woman to be bad ass in a film as that is my fight as well but you cannot expect me or anyone else to join the Zoe Saldana parade if she chose the wrong vehicle and script to bring to theaters. Sanaa Lathan did an awesome job in Aliens vs Predictor. Let's not forget Jada Pinkett in DemonKnight. Action/horror films with women in films that IMHO were executed right! BTW, a black woman in charge is not scary but sexy hell!!!

  • Kia | August 25, 2011 3:46 AMReply


    "I only support films and actors that interest me"

    Exactly why I championing for Zoe. And when Nicole does leap up to A list status--which will be shortly, you'll be on here bashing her as well. A film with a black woman in charge obviously is a scary thing to most. Let us just restrict ourselves to playing the wife, the supportive girlfriend and in light of the rousing support to see Wench be adapted into a movie... oh how could I forget... the slave.

  • tambay | August 25, 2011 3:44 AMReply

    @ Kia - I couldn't disagree more with your last comment. I'm fairly consistent in my reviews. So even if this starred a dude (Idris or Chiwetel) I'd say the same thing.

    A silly movie is a silly movie, regardless of who's in it... at least from my POV. I'd trash (and have trashed) all those "mindless" studio films that the "boys" continue to make. I even dismissed one of them within this review.

    In fact, I'd say that, take Zoe Saldana out of this movie, and put any dude in it, and I'd probably not have even bothered to see it. And if I did, my review probably would have been even more scathing, because there's really nothing fresh nor new here - other than the fact that it stars a woman of color. That's the initial attraction (at least for some of us it is). But once you get passed that, it doesn't offer much else.

    So if Zoe is simply "following the boys" that's perfectly fine; just don't expect critics to be any kinder just because she's a woman following the boys.

  • Darkan | August 25, 2011 3:32 AMReply

    Damn!!! Tambay slam dunked on that ass!!! What a scathing review but at least he kept it honest and real. I only support a film and actors that interests me, not just because they are black. We haven't gotten too far by following that mantra. My ultimate lesson on that was paying to go see the string of horrible black films in the 90's like "Strictly Business" and "Booty Call" and look what those actors went on to do for black entertainment. Zoe still needs to do something that proves her worth. Honestly she had better watch out for Nicole Baharie that's coming up on the rear pretty fast! LOL.

  • Kia | August 25, 2011 3:10 AMReply

    I'm sure if the lead was Idris or Chiwetel, there would be just a tad bit less sarcasm, a tad bit less quickness to dismiss. How many of these "mindless" studio films come out with male leads--tons. So in retrospect, Zoe's just following the boys. Can the ladies say something, please.

  • Duncan MaNutz | August 25, 2011 3:02 AMReply

    @ Kia, Zoe rocks, regardless.

  • Sergio | August 25, 2011 2:59 AMReply

    Aside from the lack of advance screenings, the fact that they moved up the release date from Sept to the last weekend of August , which is always considered traditionally the WORST date of the year to release a film, rather damped my enthusiasm for the film

  • Emmanuel | August 25, 2011 2:55 AMReply

    I was afraid of this, after seeing the few clips that were made available. I thought the acting was a little flat.

    Now I don't know what to do . . . see it; don't see it?

  • Kia | August 25, 2011 2:46 AMReply

    Have to chime in and say, I don't think anyone thought this film was going to revolutionize women in actions films. Let's just say any movie released in August has low expectations--which is why Planet of the Apes was a huge surprise. I wouldn't say, don't see it, b/c the point you brought up (woman of color holding the gun) is all I need to go and support this movie.

    What I do hope: Another more substantially character driven action film w/a lead female of color will surface as a result of the strengths that Zoe does bring to the table.

    Zoe rocks, regardless.

  • Zeus | August 25, 2011 2:42 AMReply

    I knew it. The trailer and clips told me all you just typed.

    Cookie cutter action flick with a sexy, yet somewhat gaunt lead actress.

  • Ash | August 25, 2011 2:35 AMReply

    Well Tambay, after this review I certainly do not want to see it for myself lol. Although I wouldn't have seen it anyway, it seems like exactly what everyone expected it to be. Not a Zoe fan.

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