Saturday, March 13, 2010

Build Your Own Black History Mumf

By Odienator
(for all BHM @ BMV posts, click here)

(Odienator Note: Get your requests in below. I start posting my choices the week of April 5th.)

Folks, if you've been counting, you'd know that this year's Mumf (and last year's for that matter) was shorter than 2008's. Only in 2008 did I adhere to a piece a day, a rule I imposed on myself as a challenge. Unfortunately, the past two Februaries haven't exactly been the most wonderful time of the year for me. Life has kicked the hell out of me, and when life took a break, all this work travel picked up the slack. If Tyler Perry made Up in the Air, it would star me instead of George Clooney. I should also have appeared on House, since I've been hospitalized and cared for by mean doctors who look like Hugh Laurie.

Now, this is my show, so I could have just let this slide. But I like challenges. So, here's a new one for me. I've decided to take requests for the 4 pieces I shortchanged you in February, 2010. You know the rules. Don't post here asking me to write about some John Hughes movie. It's still BHM @ BMV. If you request Birth of a Nation or Soul Plane, I'll kill you myself.

I'll make the final picks and start writing, unless it's something I plan on covering for BHM 2011 (provided there IS a BHM @ BMV 2011). So, post your requests below and I'll pick a few and see what I can do. I'll credit you so the Internet knows who to blame for this.


Unknown said...

My request for Der Odie is Blue Collar by Schrader, as far as I know the only cinematic attempt to address the conscious ruling class effort to divide the Blag and Hohnkay working class.

Hal said...

I agree that BLUE COLLAR is a great idea. I think it is Richard Pryor's best performance.

A content of their character actors on Madge Sinclair would be outstanding. Speaking of Ms. Sinclair, CONRACK or CORNBREAD, EARL & ME would be films I would suggest, along with 1964's NOTHING BUT A MAN, Melvin Van Peebles' WATERMELON MAN and the truly bizarre DARKTOWN STRUTTERS, just to limit myself to five suggestions. There would be no shortage of material for BHM's for years to come, no doubt. :)

odienator said...

Michael, I've been wanting to write about Blue Collar since 2008. I even reference it in my Michael Schultz piece:

"The next year, Pryor would give the greatest acting performance of his career in the dark, ruthlessly bitter auto worker drama, Blue Collar..."

Blue Collar would have appeared at some point had I been able to find a copy of the movie. Alas, none could be found. One of the rules of BHM is that I watch every single movie I showcase before I write about it, even if I've seen it a million times. I hadn't seen Blue Collar in almost 20 years, but it's still seared in my memory. Rules are rules, though, so no write-up.

However, I just learned that, in January 2010, Universal put out a new DVD of it. Netflix doesn't have the movie, but Amazon does. I bought it. With three votes thus far, from you, Boone and Hal, plus my desire to write about it, Blue Collar is definitely a go.

Hal, Turner Classic Movies ran Darktown Strutters a few months ago on its Underground series. As I mentioned back in the comments section under the I'm Gonna Git You Sucka post here at BHM, I hadn't seen this movie since it came out. Watching it after 30+ years, I was astonished by how truly out there it is. It is truly a WTF?!!! movie.

You present some tempting choices, especially Nothing But A Man and the divine Ms. Sinclair, whom I cannot resist. I'll take your items under advisement and pick something. Stay tuned!

Jeffrey Hill said...

I could have sworn you wrote something about Woody Strode at some point...maybe it was at the House. It may have been about Sgt. Rutledge. Anyway, I can't seem to find it.

You also mentioned rewatching Song of the South once it was out on DVD - I recently watched it in several parts off Youtube. A post on that particular film or with Uncle Remus in general would be interesting.

odienator said...

Jeffrey, i wrote briefly about Sgt. Rutledge in my Juano Hernandez piece from last year. I was going to do a proper piece on Woody Strode, but am saving that for later. Strode was one half of the duo who re-integrated NFL football, and Sports Illustrated had a great article on him a few months back.

As for Song of the South, one of the things that has always bugged me is that I don't remember much of it. That's the reason I was interested in seeing it again, though I may be very sorry. My aunt took me to see it decades ago, and I doubt she would have taken me to see something she deemed improper. Still I've wondered about the movie over time.

After reading your comment, I went out and found pieces of Song of the South. I was going to just turn it off during the opening credits (why put myself through this? I'm aggravated enough as it is, I thought) and then I saw that it was shot by Gregg Toland. I have to watch it now.

I'm 20 minutes into it, and so far, I haven't wanted to kill anybody. But it's early in the picture.

odienator said...

I haven't wanted to kill anybody. But it's early in the picture.

Famous last words.

Unknown said...

My request is the chapelle show. Maybe dave didnt not sell out as he ran out of ideas and rather make crap he quit while he was ahead

Or you can do Hoodlum with Vanessa Williams and Laurence Fishburne

Jeffrey Hill said...

I didn't see you in the papers this morning, so perhaps you finished the movie without wanting to kill somebody, no?

odienator said...

perhaps you finished the movie without wanting to kill somebody

Don't be so sure.

Considering that Disney has no problem with this, I don't get why they won't release Song of the South with a disclaimer like WB does on the Looney Tunes collections. I disagree with Roger Ebert on keeping it off American DVD, even though I can't imagine any kid of today wanting to sit through it.

Back in 2008, I said that if I were ever able to get my hands on a copy of Song of the South, I'd write a piece on it and Ralph Bakshi's Coonskin, its intentionally offensive parody. Now that I've seen Song of the South at an age where I can remember it, I suppose I have to keep my word.

Matt Zoller Seitz said...

A review of "La Haine" or a big piece on Sammy Davis, Jr., with emphasis on his autobiography "Yes, I Can."

odienator said...

I saw La Haine at the New York Film Festival. If I can get a copy, I'll consider it.

As for Sammy, as many books as I've read on my partner in half-blindness, I'm going to have to save him for the next full installment of Black History Mumf. He requires more time than I can give him at this moment. While I am glad I included him this year in my Anna Lucasta piece, I am neglectful for not mentioning his hilarious turn as Mr. Palomino in my Cosby Show piece.