Beauty Shop (2005)
USA / English
Gina is a hairstylist who opens up a beauty shop full of employees and customers more interested in speaking their minds than getting a cut.
One of the strongest movies dealing with integration I think I've seen
Beauty Shop You know, the more I think about it, the more I like Queen
Latifah. For the overall uselessness of the movie Bringin' Down da
House, that one scene where she transforms into a rich, upper class
type public speaker just to show Steve Martin's character that she CAN
do it, she just chooses NOT to, definitely shows a side of "black
culture" that is much more relatable to-->the fact that (a
lot/most/some?) choose that because that's how they WANT to identify
themselves, and it's not meant to be confrontational at heart. It's
like choosing to be a goth, or a punk, or all of those subcultures
almost, conformingly anticonformist, grouping yourself in a similar
So now we have this movie, where Queen Latifa plays Gina, a stylist
whiz who feels under-appreciated at her job so opens her own shop, and
there she shocks and appalls the neighborhood by bringing in white
clientele and white employees and letting them all enjoy the scenery.
It's actually one of the strongest movies dealing with integration I
think I've seen, basically because when everyone gives trouble to the
the white girl, and the white girl's getting upset and disturbed by it,
Gina just has to say to her, "Hey, think how I felt in a white shop."
Plus, when dealing with those pesky issues of representation that seems
to hover over every mediated creation of "black characters", this one
is pretty broad, from the black women who refuse to work with the white
woman and leave, to the young "white-speaking" black girl who keeps on
getting hit on by the jive-talking twelve-year-old, to the African
culture versed man above them who, also, happens to know a thing or two
about playing good piano.
And of course it would be. From the makers of Barbershop, it has that
same more critical look at black culture that loves it, and yet knows
what it really is and where people on "both" sides take it too
seriously. Barbershop was actually quite a wonderful film, mostly
because of it's political incorrectness, but also because of the
pale-skinned barber who points out that being black is what he wants,
not what he has to be born into, and Cedric the Entertainer doing his
"Martin Luther King Jr. was a HO!" bit was just too much.
Now if only this film didn't have ... well... Kevin Bacon. I thought
that having Kevin Bacon in it would make it amazing, but it really,
really didn't. He's just too weird for a too lightly humored film.
Instead, I'd like to point out that this movie has Andie McDowell in a
fantastic role, so with that cast, it's got to have SOMETHING to it.
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