Last week's movie night movie was the buzz-generating Pariah, starring newcomer Adepero Oduye and more established, though mostly known for comedy, Kim Wayans.
The movie tells the story of Alike, a teenager struggling with her gay identity in a less-than-accepting family. She has to deal with a mother in denial of her sexuality who constantly tries to get her to dress girlier and buys her clothes. Her father is more understanding, but sees it as just a phase. The only person truly understanding is her best friend Laura, also gay, who exposes Alike to the underground gay and lesbian clubs in her Brooklyn neighborhood. Alike's mother, however, disapproves of the friendship and discourages her daughter from spending time with Laura. She forces Alike to spend time with a coworker's daughter, which throws Alike into a tailspin when she falls for the girl.
The movie was such an indication, to me at least, that so many actors and performers deserve more attention than Hollywood seems willing to give them. Something that I found similar to Precious was the unexpected use of actors. A relative newcomer (Gabourey Sidibe in Precious) in the main role and a performer better known for comedy (Mo'Nique in Precious) in a supporting role. In all cases, these actresses seem more willing to do what so many in Hollywood will not, be less than glamorous. I hope that Oduye is better able to make a move towards other great films than Sidibe, who doesn't seem to have done much to build on a promising start.
Daisha - "Top Blow"
Sparlha Swa - "Doin' My Thing"
Gossip - "Fire with Fire" (movie version was performed by Tamar-Kali)