You get “Precious“.
And if it is, then you are wrong.
Yes, Precious does feature some pretty racy topics in regards to Black People. Obesity. Rape. Incest. Child abuse. Teen mothers. HIV. Welfare. Poor education. Fried chicken. Pigs feet. Black-eyed peas (not the band).
And that is exactly why the majority of the Black Community cherish the film and book, because it is about and made by/for the Black Community. No way was Angelia Jolie, Jennifer Aniston, or Keira Knightley going to steal the lead role away from a potential Black Actress. So Black People embraced and supported the book and movie.
That and because Oprah said so. When Oprah tells the Black Community to do something, they must do it. Or else.
Although Black People can certainly enjoy watching a movie that’s not about Black People (apparently the only movie-going group in America that can do this), Black People also occasionally like to see themselves as the heroes or main characters and not just the best friend or the emasculated sidekick.
Here’s an exercise. Name 5 movies that were financed and produced by a Hollywood studio (i.e. not a Tyler Perry movie) in which a Black Person (or any Non-Caucasian Person for that matter) was the main character, had a romantic subplot that ended happily, defeated the villain and didn’t get dead by the time the credits role…
Can’t think of any, can you?
Whenever this commonly known fact is pointed out some people tend to dismiss it as complaining, but it’s really a symptom of a much larger social problem in American Entertainment. You see, while the majority of Americans are perfectly willing to elect a Black Person as their president, Hollywood is nowhere near as progressive or liberal as some of its detractors have painted it to be.
Hollywood runs on money. Every Hollywood movie and every decision that went into making was based on the intent of trying to make as much money as possible. Since Black People make up on 13.4% of the American population, they are still too small of a group for Hollywood to care about. And since Caucasian People are incapable of relating to characters that aren’t also Caucasian besides Will Smith, this problem with persist.
It’s far too easy to write this issue off as racism. That word is far too small to cover such a large issue. Resentment seems more fitting. According to the people that run Hollywood, a man with the looks and girth of a Seth Rogen or a Jonah Hill is far more attractive and desirable to women than a man with the looks and muscle tone of a Will Smith or Denzel Washington could ever dream to be.
Also, according to Hollywood, all attractive Caucasian Females are extremely thin, usually blonde and under the age of 30 while Halle Berry (who is 43 this year) is the only attractive Black Female on the entire planet (women like Gabrielle Union and Naomi Harris are far too dark be considered attractive), so the chances of Hollywood producing a film in which a Black Couple are the main characters, save the world, and survive to live happily ever after seems anemic at best.
So until the day that Black People take over Hollywood, studio executives will continue to employ the “Friends” mentality of See No Black People, Hear No Black People (unless they are about to die a horrible death).
There has been much debate, speculation and controversy as to why Black People dig Tyler Perry so. If you are not a Black Person, this must seem especially baffling. You probably have no interest in seeing Tyler Perry’s “films” or maybe have seen one and found it to be extremely distasteful. Yet, Tyler Perry continues to top the Box Office with every single theatrical release. How can this be? The answer is very simple.
Thanks to Jaws and Star Wars, Hollywood movies usually targets only one group of people: Young Caucasian Males. Women, minorities, and adults over 45 have been routinely belittled or ignored at the Box Office. Tyler Perry as successfully tapped a large part of this market.
We already know that Black People love movies just as much as every other group (see: #7. Bootleg DVDs and #18. Talking During The Movie), but when a Black Person decides to venture out to the theater to see one, it can be an extremely frustrating experience since Hollywood refuses to acknowledge the Black Community.
Then came Tyler Perry, who turned his successful stage plays into movies that appeal almost exclusively to Black Christian Females. Every single movie Tyler Perry movie has been a Box Office hit despite unanimously bad reviews and almost zero advertising, which has angered many Non-Black People. How could someone possibly make the same type of movie over and over again with huge Box Office returns (aside from Judd Apatow)?
Quite simply, until Hollywood figures out that middle class Black People (specifically Black Females) really do love movies and are willing to spend money on arguably bad films for the chance to see themselves on the big screen, Tyler Perry will continue to make gobs of money thanks to his loyal Black Christian Female fanbase.
NOTE: If you are not a Black Person, publicly criticizing Tyler Perry in any way, shape or form will label you a racist by the Black Community (and will get you exiled to Canada if you are a Black Person).
It has already been established that Black People dig movies, but it’s the kind of movies Black People dig that’s worth noting.
Stop a random Black Person on the street and ask them if they’ve seen any bonafide classics such as “Casablanca“, “Dr. Strangelove” or even “Citizen Kane” and chances are you will get nothing but blank stares. But ask that same Black Person what the greatest movie ever made was and chances are they will undoubtedly say “Scarface” 100% of the time.
The fact that this film has had such a large impact on Black Culture is truly amazing seeing as that it has virtually no Black People in it and was not made by Spike Lee or Tyler Perry.
“Scarface” is the story of a poor immigrant named Tony Montana (played by Al Pacino) who comes to the United States illegally and rises to power. This is every single Black Person’s fantasy (the fact that Tony obtains power by killing and drug dealing and dies a horrible death is besides the point). Many Rhythmic Musicians including Sean Combs have listed this movie as their favorite, and if one Black Person likes something then all Black People must like it too.
Every Black Person that has disagreed that Scarface is not one of the greatest movies ever made has been kicked out of the Black Community and exiled to Canada, so if you see any Black People in Canada now you will know why they are there.
If you didn’t know it already, Black People love to play video games. When not buying expensive tennis shoes, bootleg DVDs, rims or loose clothing, a Black Person can spend a frightening amount of money on video games and an even more frightening amount of time playing them. Go to a Black Person’s house and chances are they will have a copy of the following games: “Madden” and “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas”.
But why are Black People so in love with this particular video game? Sure, it has decent graphics for its platform, fantastic gameplay and a well-written story line, but that’s not what Black People love most about the game. That would be the fact that a Black Person is the main character.
Carl “CJ” Johnson comes from a family of gang members and must return to his old neighborhood (or “hood”) to solve his mother’s murder. This could’ve easily become a Caucasian Person’s story, but the game developers chose to base the game on the civil unrest in the Black Community in the early 90’s and popular Black movies like “Boyz n the Hood” and “Menace II Society”. Could Black People ask for anything better? (sure they could, but let’ save that for another post)
Because Black People routinely feel they are neglected and marginalized by Hollywood due to the serious lack of new and young Black talent to be offered leading roles in movies on par with Shia Labeouf and Channing Tatum, Black People will cling desperately to any type of story that features a Black Person or a group of Black People are the central characters (hence the success of Tyler Perry).
If you every attempt to make friends with a Black Person and don’t know what to say, just mention how much you love Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and how compelling you found the story line and how you wish you were just like CJ. Black People will give you a head-nod, which means you are not a racist.
This may come as a total surprise (especially if you are a Hollywood studio executive), but Black People love movies. Next to sports, watching movies is one of Black People’s favorite pastimes. However, with rising gas and ticket prices, your average Black Person can’t always make it out to the theater (even if the gas and ticket prices were low they still probably wouldn’t go).
That’s where bootleg DVDs find their niche. Ask your local bootleg what kind of people make up the majority of his clientele and chances are he will undoubtedly say “Black People”.
Black People will always prefer to watch a movie in the comfort of their own home where they don’t have to pay outrageous concession stand prices for food and don’t have to put up with annoying or stuck-up people (who aren’t Black) that can’t handle a little chatter or louder than usual laughter during the movie.
This activity also segues into another popular topic among Black People, which is where to purchase the best bootlegs. Black People can and will talk at length about where to find the newest and clearest bootlegs before the movie itself is even hits wide-release. The one Black Person who can pull off such a feat will automatically be envied by all the other Black People they know.