The mission of The Department of Afro-American Research Arts and Culture to identify the global significance of the creative contributions pioneered by an international diaspora of Blackness
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Showing posts with label 2007. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2007. Show all posts

Friday, June 21, 2013

Black Devil Doll (2007)

  • Jonathan Louis Lewis
  • Chris Lewis
  • Minh Bao
A young, moist, buxom teen vixen finds herself hurled into an odyssey of forbidden sex and unspeakable violence after an innocent evening dabbling in the occult. What started as a simple child's game has now become a fight for her life! What is this evil that she has summoned from beyond? And why does it have a fro? What kind of horrific acts will she be subjected to? And what price will her super-hot, half-nude friends have to pay?

It's all in good fun... Right? No, I don't believe it is. What would be the fun in that, anyway? I don't care who you think you are. I don't care if you think Combat Shock was hilarious. This new and greatly improved Black Devil Doll will grab your sensibilities by the throat and cut it open, and whatever happens after that is your own damn fault. Black Devil Doll is a half homage, half remake of a mind-numbingly awful pile of Z-grade garbage, from the 80's, entitled Black Devil Doll From Hell. A film that, over the years, has gained a bit of a reputation as (arguably) the worst in history. And might I add, a film that has been seen by far too few. but apparently, one day, an aspiring director asked himself a very important question. "What if Black Devil Doll From Hell was a masterpiece?"

Sure, with a little tweaking, here and there. Hire some actual actors. Put some actual money into it. Maybe even cut a few minutes off the opening credits. It could actually turn into something. And what this new Black Devil Doll has turned into will cause a laughing/crying fit, which will know no relief until it's all over. So, a dim-witted chick named Heather messes around with a ouija board, for no particular reason, instantly causing a doll to be possessed by the soul of an executed black-militant (Mubia), who despised white people, and loved raping and slaughtering white women. It's pretty much love at first sight. Although, it might be a short-lived romance, because one woman ain't never enough for this guy, but maybe with a little smooth-talk, Mubia can convince Heather to not only let him cheat on her, but maybe even let him rape and slaughter all her friends... As if she has a choice. Only problem now is just getting her out of the house.

What we have here is simply the most offensive, most outrageous comedy of the past decade. Possibly the most offensive movie since Pink Flamingo's. that's right, I'm a John Waters fan, a Troma fan, and an LBP fan, and now that I've seen Black Devil Doll. I can finally say that I've seen it all. Besides the obvious, Black Devil Doll is also a homage to old Blaxploitation, and Exploitation, in general. I suppose what this film is homaging, and what it actually is, is one in the same. Folks, this is a perfect example of modern Exploitation. For more in future cult classics from this past decade, check out Special Dead, and Sick Girl. If you're smart enough to not take movies seriously, and If you have a sick sense of humor, like someone I know, you will find Black Devil Doll to be positively delightful. And that's a guarantee. 10/10

Sunday, January 13, 2013

In The Shadow of Hollywood: Race Movies and the Birth of Black Cinema (2007) & The Broken Earth (1936)

  • Pearl Bowser
  • Leroy Collins
  • Ruby Dee
"In the Shadow of Hollywood: Race Movies and the Birth of Black Cinema captures the sounds and images of a nearly-forgotten era in film history when African American filmmakers and studios created “race movies” exclusively for black audiences.
The best of these films attempted to counter the demeaning stereotypes of black Americans prevalent in the popular culture of the day.

About 500 films were produced, yet only about 100 still exist. Filmmaking pioneers like Oscar Micheaux, the Noble brothers, and Spencer Williams, Jr. left a lasting influence on black filmmakers, and inspired generations of audiences who finally saw their own lives reflected on the silver screen."

"The fragmented history of American "race movies" is explored in this documentary. This niche was born in 1910 out of a segregated and racist attitude toward African Americans in the Hollywood entertainment industry. These films contained all black casts, were guided by black directors, and were produced by black-owned studios through the end of World War II. In order to counter the pervasive stereotypes put forward by Hollywood film, "race movies" rejected depictions that strictly connected poverty and crime to race, and offered more positive, community-centered representations. An estimated 500 films were created, but only 100 survive today. These films not only established more realistic public perceptions of African-American culture, but also helped launch the careers of many outstanding black actors like Lena Horne and Paul Robeson. This underrepresented genre of American film history is effectively celebrated and contextualized through interviews and archival footage. High school media centers, as well as history and communications educators, will find this documentary to be an impacting way to engender discussions about issues of race and representation, and an excellent record of the first independent cinematic movement in America."

Broken Earth (1936) [Short]


  • Clarence Muse
  • Freita Shaw Ethiopian Choir
A farmer (Clarence Muse) and tiller of the soil comes from the fields to find his young son dying. He prays to the Lord to save his only child. His prayer is answered and the boy lives. The Shaw Ethiopian Choir provides the background music.