Tag: Good Hair

Good Hair

Sadly overlooked at the box office, Chris Rock’s documentary on black hair – and the billion-dollar industry built around it – is a fascinating, if tragic, look at what black women will do in order to “fix” their naturally curly hair. Rock examines the products that “relax” hair (which will eat an aluminum can in four hours), and the weaves that they buy as a means of getting around using the relaxer. (Raven-Symone actually pulls her weave out of place on camera.) Rock even travels to India to meet the people who collect the hair that’s used in weaves. There is a sub-story involving four stylists competing for a $20,000 prize at the semi-annual Bronner Bros. hair convention in Atlanta – one of whom, surprisingly, is a white boy – but it doesn’t quite gel with the rest of the movie. The meat of “Good Hair” comes from women discussing the hair tragedies they’ve suffered at the hands of relaxer (that asymmetrical haircut in Salt & Pepa’s video for “Push It”? Yep, the result of her hair falling out) and how they handle having sex while wearing a weave (“Stay on top”). And Rock, being an ace comedian, knows a good last line when he hears one, so he wisely lets noted philosopher Ice-T close the show: “I just think that women shouldn’t be pointing their fingers at other women for what they doin’ to help each others’ bodies. Other than that, do whatever makes you feel good, because trust me, if a woman ain’t happy with herself, she gonna bring nothin’ but pain to every-fucking-body around her.”

Click to buy “Good Hair”

Will “Couples” find box office fulfillment?

Couples Retreat

As if the movie gods themselves wished to offer me some breathing space, this weekend has only one new wide release, and it sure doesn’t strike me as anything to get very excited about. Our own Jason Zingale — who enjoyed seeing a reunion of “Swingers” pals Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau — gave a pretty tepid, just this side of positive, review to “Couples Retreat.” Jason’s take, however, is a hysterical rave compared to the blistering reviews that had the film at a pretty darn rotten 09% “fresh” Rotten Tomatoes rating.

Nevertheless, audiences may differ from the critics. The comedy does boast the appeal of the all-mid-level star cast, which also includes the very talented Jason Bateman and Kristen Bell. Also, the fact that the R-rated blood/body-parts splatter comedy, “Zombieland,” and the PG-rated family food splatter science fiction comedy, “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,” are dominating the box office right now means that there’s not a whole lot out there in wide release for the non-splattery date movie trade.

Whip ItNow, Fox Searchlight’s hopes of good word-of-mouth-based box office could pan out for the girl-powered sports comedy, “Whip It.” So, if director Peter Billingsley — yes, Ralphie from “A Christmas Story” — wants to avoid a nasty box office defeat, he’ll have to hope there are no pleasant suprises for his fellow ex-child star making a feature directorial debut, Drew Barrymore. Variety‘s Andrew Stewart says the lately somewhat beleaguered Universal expects “decent numbers” whatever those are, but my hunch is that “Couples” will be lucky to be in the top five on this weekend’s hit parade and may not crack double digits. However, I’m nearly always wrong when I stray from the experts. We shall see.

The remaining action this weekend is in terms of limited releases. As per Box Office Mojo, other than some potential Oscar fare we may be discussing in coming weeks, we have “Good Hair,” from Chris Rock and director Jeff Stilson getting excellent reviews and debuting in 185 theaters, as well as the LeBron James-headlined sports documentary, “More Than a Game,” expanding into 44 theaters. “From Mexico With Love,” an old-school boxing/message picture being aimed at the Latino market, is also getting a very decent sized release in 285 theaters. The earnest looking drama has been so successfully hidden from critics so far, it’s not even appearing on Rotten Tomatoes new release listing.

Oh, and I almost forgot the one release that’s probably destined to be more than a trivia question after this week is over. After an extremely successful midnight-only release last week, the canny scarefest “Paranormal Activity” will be getting a normal release in 159 screens this weekend. As it happens, I saw it last night and will be writing up the review after I’m done here, but suffice it to say for now that I personally observed a bunch of presumably jaded, mostly youngish, industry-connected folks at a screening on the Paramount lot last night doing a pretty good impression of the folks in the trailer — well, maybe laughing at their own fear a bit more. This is not just hype.

paranormal activity

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