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Welcome to Soul Sis-Star Movie Reviews

Bringing you Black Cinema reviews 24 hours a day from a Sis-Star's perspective. Our site is still under construction, so bear please bear with us!

Movies Revisited: Mo Better Blues

June 19, 2009


Even though this movie was highly anticipated when it came out, and I did indeed see it then, there were only a few details I remembered…the beautiful clothes, how pretty everyone looked, slightly crushing on Wesley Snipes (long gone, of course). But watching it again brought me a bit past my original superficial thoughts on the film.

For those of you who don’t know, the plot synopsis is this (from IMDB–not a very good one, sorry):

Opens with Bleek as a child learning to play the trumpet, his friends want him to come out and play but mother insists he finish his lessons. Bleek grows into adulthood and forms his own band – The Bleek Gilliam Quartet. The story of Bleek’s and Shadow’s friendly rivalry on stage which spills into their professional relationship and threatens to tear apart the quartet. Read more…


COMEDY CLASSIC: “Watermelon Man”

June 18, 2009
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Watermelon ManSo my friend told me about this movie the other day while we were discussing Blaxploitation flicks, and I hadn’t even heard of it. “You haven’t heard of Watermelon Man?” he said. “Aww man, you gotta watch it.” And so I did.

I was NOT ready.

Watermelon Man is about an obnoxious, racist white man who wakes up one morning to find that he is black. The film came out in 1970 and Melvin Van Peebles directed it; these two facts alone should give you a general idea of what to expect, but I shall continue.

First of all the actor, Godfrey Cambridge, was hilariously convincing as an obnoxious white man. You know the kind that even other white people despise? The overly comfortable, corny joke-telling, in your face, smart ass bigotty type. He’s married with two kids and his “liberal” white wife is essentially bored with their relationship. In other words, he has just enough going against him to make you anticipate his impending fate.

Because this film was directed by Melvin Van Peebles, it didn’t take the stereotypical turns that I would expect from say, a white director. The character is not originally WHITE in BLACKFACE. No. This isn’t Soul Man. And when Cambridge’s character turns black, his penis doesn’t magically enlarge, his accent doesn’t change and he doesn’t become a superstar athlete. No, Mr. Van Peebles wasn’t about to let us go out like that. In fact, the film plays more on white fear of blackness than anything else, which says a lot about the time during which it was made. Read more…

Throwback: Leonard Part 6

June 14, 2009
thank you jah that there was no 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5

thank you jah that there was no 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5

I debated on whether I should attend the Los Angeles Film Festival this year, but decided against it–I need to save my scrilla as I am moving back down to LA after my lease is up at the end of July, then I will be in film fest heaven all year round.

I was slightly bummed about not going, so to appease myself I have immersed myself in watching movies all weekend, both Black and YT. Since this blog is only about the Black kind, I’ll share with you the gem *cough* I saw yesterday on cable, the 1987  film “Leonard Part 6”, starring the must-have-been-drugged-and-beaten-to-do-this-movie, Dr. William H. Cosby, Jr. aka Bill Cosby.

You can best believe that a movie is going to be beyond a complete and total disaster when the star of it goes on national TV to tell you not to waste your time or money to go see it, which I read he actually did at the time. Why he even considered doing this project for even 10 seconds during a time when he ruled the world with the “Cosby Show” is a mystery parallel to the alien crop circles;  there is simply no rational or logical explanation. Maybe he was blackmailed by one of his many rumoured mistresses. Read more…

TV Watchin’: Lift

June 9, 2009


I had been looking for this film for a minute since reading about it a couple years back –it was actually at a film festival I attended years ago, but it managed to bypass me. “Lift”  is a 2001 film starring Kerry Washington as an upscale booster, if there is such a thing. In her fierce designer clothing she generally uses stolen credit cards to purchase high end items, i.e. Versace, but occasionally lifts items directly, such as cashmere sweaters from expensive boutiques.

She does very well, and also works in a department store where her creativity is beginning to be noticed by the higher-ups. She comes to a crossroads, finding herself pregnant, with different priorities looming. She figures the only way out is one last big score–a risky endeavor at a fine jewelry store that requires her to work with others, something she’s been solidly against. Of course, usually when you go against your better instincts, there are consequences, and 99% of the time they are not what you would call good. Read more…

Bootleg City: Frankenhood

June 6, 2009

Still grillin’…I am making a grilled pizza today–wish me luck. Have been watching a few films…I must say that Issa Rae is a much bigger woman than moi, cause I couldn’t get past 20 minutes of the wretched “Dance Flick”. Everything in that film was more than played out ten years ago, and with good reason. I’m really becoming afraid that Essence Atkins, whom I adore and who was in “Dance Flick” (also “Love For Sale”), is slowly and unfortunately becoming the female Clifton Powell of low brow and straight to DVD movies.

Also saw  “Drag Me To Hell” the other day, against my better judgement, cause many critics and blogs said it was great. It was aaaiiiggghht, but drooling, vomiting, and disgusting slime every few minutes does not equate horror to me, just nasty grossness that I can do without. But of course, if Sam Raimi, the director of “DMTH” is at the top of the comedy/horror genre, “Frankenhood“, the film this post is dedicated to, is below the absolute bottom. It is around the corner, 10 miles down, and buried beneath a septic tank. Read more…

DVD Review: Traitor

June 3, 2009

I do this pose throughout the whole entire movie.

I haven’t been watching as many movies as I usually do, as I have taken up with a new hobby: grilling. I am fairly obsessed with it right now, and can see why men spend entire summers around the grill. I am buying all the tools, and am grilling practically anything that isn’t liquid, haha.

Anyway, I did take time out to watch the film “Traitor“. I don’t know if reviewing this is toeing the line on Black Cinema, but the film was widely reported on in the Black Cinema Blogs, and The Cheadle is the lead.

Let me begin by saying that thrillers are my very favorite genre, and of the genre, political thrillers are my least favorite, unless they are from the 70’s. They are often confusing, chaotic, hard to follow, with red herrings and subplots all over the place. “Traitor”  has the worst all of those aspects. While perusing, the end-all of film roundups, I saw that this film had a pretty good rating. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why, in the same way I couldn’t understand the praise for “Syriana”, which this flick reminded me of.  Read more…

Bootleg City: Love For Sale

May 31, 2009

Love For Sale

Have you ever had a major crush on a movie or TV actor, and they made a career move that was so repulsive that it smashed all of your fantasies/hopes/dreams into a million little pieces? Well thanks, “Love For Sale” for demolishing my Jackie Long crush, never to be revived again.

I don’t even know where to begin with this one, it would take an hour, at least. To put it in a nutshell, it is the story of a rib joint delivery dude (Jackie), who seems very happy with his station in life for whatever reason. He is in love with Mya (the singer), who has a jealous and muscle-bound boyfriend…really more obsessed than jealous. That is the storyline—with a ridiculous subplot about Jackie’s uncle (the dude that played Blacula’s sidekick) saving his ancient recording studio with the most untalented rap group this side of Vanilla Ice, but thanks to the miracle of Hollywood Bootleg, in this movie they become “what’s hot in the streets”. Read more…