Every Month, the site runs a poll based on the list of films submitted by LAMB members for the prestigious ability of being named as the Movie of the Month that will be discussed on the LAMBCAST podcast during that given month.
I decided that each month I will watch each of the films chosen and give my rankings of those films in order to decide which film I should vote for and in doing so, maybe help some of you also decide which film to vote for.
The voting is open until Sunday the 19th of July, so make sure to get your vote in soon.
This month, there were 10 Contenders all suggested by Jay (since it’s his birthday month) so here they are:
- Boomerang (1992)
- Boys N The Hood (1991)
- Do The Right Thing (1989)
- Hollywood Shuffle (1987)
- In The Heat Of Night (1967)
- Love and Basketball (2000)
- Pariah (2011)
- Sorry To Bother You (2018)
- Super Fly (1972)
- To Sleep With Anger (1990)
Here are my rankings along with brief thoughts on each film (click on the film title if you want to read my full review)
10. Sorry To Bother You – Terrible film that starts off promising yet gets derailed along the way, The story of this film works when they are focusing on the idea of labor unions, telemarketing tactics and even camaraderie in the workplace, but once it gets into the corporate world it turns down some very strange or really crazy ideas that never seem to pan out. The cast is superb which is surprising to me because of the directions that this story eventually takes, but it was nice seeing Danny Glover in a small role that is very different from anything he has done in the past. (3/10)
9. Boomerang – Semi-fun Murphy film that goes a bit overboard with certain aspects of things. The story goes in some very strange directions and fails to stay interesting because it seems to rehash much of the same idea throughout the film. Murphy has no chemistry with either of his co-stars and both Berry and Givens do better jobs here than he does. The film’s plot is quite weak and fails to find a way to keep the momentum going and have things become enjoyable along the way. (5/10)
8. Super Fly – Really silly film that is so hard to take seriously. The plot is one that has been used often and in some instances much more effectively than they manage here. O’Neal is fun in the lead role and the look and feel of the film works for what they are trying to do here. The soundtrack is truly what makes this film even more enjoyable to watch despite there not being much to take from this tale besides the way that corruption and crime has permeated the streets to such a high level. Could have been much better, but still fits in with the blacksploitation genre. (5/10)
7. To Sleep With Anger – Interesting idea that just doesn’t play out well enough. The story feels too drawn out and there are far too many moments where things move along far too slowly for its own good. Glover does a nice job in a pivotal role and it is easy to both like and detest him at the same time due to the way his character acts throughout. Things start off in the right direction, get lost along the way and then sorta finds itself towards the end when things are finally resolved. Some of the drama in the film feels far too convenient and that takes away a bit from the attempt to make this scenario feel even more realistic than it is. (6/10)
6. Hollywood Shuffle – Clever and funny satirical look at stereotypes and underscored racism in the movie industry. Townsend has a good idea here, but it isn’t effective enough because it feels far too repetitious along the way. There are some great skits presented here as daydreams and it is clear that Townsend is a great writer and director, but he fails to make this film even more powerful which is a shame. Great supporting cats that is filled with a lot of recognizable actors who were just starting out at the time. (6/10)
5. Pariah – Very good exploration of how a teen deals with being different and having to life a dual life in order to keep her secret. I liked how we get the impression that she doesn’t know who she can trust and confide in and sometimes it pays off and sometimes not. Really feels like it just is able to scratch the surface of such a complex theme. (7/10)
4. Love & Basketball – Great film that is able to show us how the love and aspirations for a sports passion can affect someone in so many ways over the course of their life. The story works because they are able to develop these characters and their personalities over the course of the 2 decades of the story in an effective way. Epps and Lathan are both great in these roles and help make us care so much about them and what they will do here. The way that the film gives us the perspective of both of these characters on how their love for basketball and of each other works well in helping create something really fascinating to watch unfold. (7/10)
3. Do The Right Thing – Very controversial film that tries to show the two main methods of protest used on a smaller scale. It mostly succeeds, but I felt that certain scenes felt too forced when they should have been done slower. Excellent cast led by Lee (who also wrote and directed). (7/10)
2. In The Heat Of Night -Mediocre best picture, but intriguing murder mystery where the themes make it worth watching because of the groundbreaking performances. (8/10)
1. Boys N The Hood – Very powerful movie. Singleton’s best movie by far perhaps because of his personal connection to the story and characters. (9/10)
So who should I vote for? – Boyz in the Hood is clearly the most powerful and impactful film on this list IMHO. They find a way to get their message across in a poignant way that doesn’t deal with stereotypes or try to tell its story thru anger and that helps make things even more meaningful to watch.
To vote, click here
Good luck to one and all!!!