|Index||5 reviews in total|
At that Black Man Film Festival in Atlanta, 2006, this movie was billed
as a documentary it isn't, but that's how real it feels.
It's an involving tale of two people trying to make sense of their lives and, whilst struggling with fledgling creative careers, trying to find validation through their relationship with each other, as so many of us tend to do.
It's interesting and well observed how the female lead, Schola, needs more and more from her relationship as her world outside of it fails to offer her the validation she craves as an actress, as a black woman, as a success While the male lead, Gabe, gradually extricates himself emotionally from the relationship in order to focus and try to make strides in his elusive film-making career. What they end up with is a strained sexual relationship and a gradual refusal of the very thing they both sought of each other in the beginning of their relationship affection, admiration, adulation... Affirmation.
It's refreshing to see black actors in roles that don't require playing "up" being black. The characters are not overly funny, overly cool, overly rhythmic, overly "black..." They're simply human, with all the beauty and flaws that being human entails.
It's also a refreshingly realistic look at love and its pitfalls and, like the director's use of New York as a backdrop, does not rely on glossy images and hackneyed ideas of romance and idealism where everything inevitably ends up happily ever after.
Instead, "Beautiful Things" reflects the anxieties, the joys, the fears, and the uncertainties that we generally encounter in our romantic liaisons and is a perfect example of art imitating life to the extent that, despite it's naïve beauty, it makes you forget that it's art at all.
For a film that was made for less than $5000, it's actually quite good. It's much better than a lot of the crap Hollywood puts out annually. The characters are believable. You actually forget that you're watching a movie. It feels that real. It's definitely uncompromising, raw and honest. It's an honest take on the idea of the romantic monogamous relationship. The production values aren't as sharp as a film with a much higher budget. But there's more than enough substance there to more than make up for that. A good first film from the filmmaker. Someone to look out for in the near future. I would love to see what the filmmaker could do with a lot more money. Someone give this guy some money will ya?
Cinematography would be too big a word for this movie. In fact, movie
is too big a word, let's call it a video.
The story is accurately described as "boy meets girl". And that's pretty much it. Why should anyone care? Why would anybody want to watch this? For me it was a plain accident, I downloaded the wrong movie. I was looking for the (excellent) British movie "Beautiful Thing". What tragic mistake.
The acting in "Beautiful ThingS" was just god-awful, it made me cringe so hard I was afraid I would be constipated for weeks.
It was one of those movie experiences where you constantly keep thinking "what in the hell am I watching this?" The video quality (I refuse to use the word cinematography here) is decidedly cheap. Like it was shot with a consumer level digital camera. The video is in black & white except some weird dialog scenes between another couple that are shot in color and interspersed throughout the b/w video. This should probably add even more of an "artistic" touch. Well, it didn;t do anything to me but annoy me.
it was cheap to make this video. Some reviewers mention $2.000, others mention $5.000 (some of these reviews seem a bit too familiar with the film maker to be considered real reviews, just some friends trying to help out their buddy who likes to make videos). This is the only positive thing I can find about this video: Not more money got wasted making it.
What is a bit strange is that one of the (positive) reviews published here can also be seen on the Amazon page for the DVD where it was published by the video taper (no, he's certainly not a director) Tambay Amadi Obenson. That's somehow sad.
I am always on the lookout for unconventional, up and coming producers of color. With that in mind, I decided to check out a screening of this movie in NYC. Knowing he made this with a pretty limited budget, I had low expectations but I have to say, I was surprisingly impressed-the use of color, background lighting-the characters could have been explored a little bit further. I was a little confused towards the middle of the movie and then things picked up. My point is stay through the entire movie because it does make sense at the end. With a little more money, I wondered if could have been a tad shorter. My sense is the next movie should be greater....Goodluck my brother...
I saw this at a theatrical screening in New York City in January and I was impressed with what the film had to offer. It's definitely a low budget film and it has that look, but the content of the film was captivating enough and it held my interest for the entire time. There are a few things that could definitely have been improved, but I'm willing to forgive those things since the film was made for $2,000. I imagine that with much more money, the filmmaker would have used the money wisely and improved on the film, but it works the way it is as far as I am concerned. I hope the film gets the exposure it deserves and that audiences, especially black audiences, go out and support the film.
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