Monday, September 14, 2009

Tyler Perry Again?

Congratulations to Tyler Perry for having his second number one movie opening. I Can Do Bad All By Myself was a hit at the box office, raking in over 20 million dollars. It stars two of the best and most undervalued actors in Hollywood, Taraji P. Henson and Brian J. White. And for that reason alone I wish I could bring myself to support this film, but I can't.

Tyler Perry is the most over rated phenomenon since the electric knife. I watched his plays and I saw the movie Diary of a Mad Black Woman. I have watched several episodes of Tyler Perry's House of Payne and Meet the Browns. And I come away from every experience dissatisfied. Now he's launching a talk show. Being ubiquitous is no substitute for being good.

There are good moral messages in his stories and the music is usually great. The cast is always attractive. The casts though attractive are generally either poor actors or poorly cast. Either way, the effect is disastrous. His famous "Madea" character's language mocks the Bible and I find it a little offensive personally. Then there is his nasty habit of resorting to stereotypical buffoonery. Watching Tyler Perry's work reminds me of the old Amos and Andy sitcom. It's a little embarrassing to watch, but on the other hand I'm so relieved to see black folks on television that I kind of put up with the shucking and jiving. Maybe this new movie is better than I think. By most accounts I'm missing a real treat. But I'll wait till its on HBO to find out. I prefer investing in quality programming. For me, supporting Perry's work at this point is like supporting Al Sharpton's bid for president. Just being black ain't gonna get.

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