By Guest Contributor Rob Fields, cross-posted from Bold As Love
Director Ava DuVernay’s award-winning film opens this Friday, March 11. I haven’t seen it, but it seems like it might be something worth checking out. The film won the Narrative Audience Award at the Urbanworld Film Festival and was recently praised by critic Roger Ebert. So, what’s it about? Here goes:
I Will Follow is a tender, thoughtful, inspiring film about love, loss and the ties that bind. Written and directed by Ava DuVernay, this award-winning drama chronicles a day in the life of a grieving woman (Salli Richardson-Whitfield), and the twelve visitors who help her move forward in a brave, new world.
“Male rappers have such an amazing amount of power and influence. If they spend their time dissing African American women, then what’s expected of the people that are buying their records; its not much to be said for them to want to spend money to hear an African American woman speak her mind.” — MC Lyte
Reader Tatisha sent in a request for us to cover BET’s My Mic Sounds Nice, saying “If that network could revamp it’s current negative image with one show, that was it.”
And was she ever correct. Over the long weekend, I caught up with my backlogged programming and found that in just one hour, the documentary managed to outshine all of the panels and conversations on hip hop and present a truly engaging conversation about the role of women and the evolution of hip-hop culture.
Ava DuVernay’s amazingly smart documentary relies on first hand testimony from those in the industry to provide the narrative, cutting between interviews with people like Eve, Trina, Joan Morgan, Chuck D, Roxane Shante, MC Lyte, Missy Elliot, Salt N Pepa, Rah Digga, Jermaine Dupri, Swizz Beatz, and Smokey Fontaine.
“Females don’t get as much exposure as men in hip-hop.” Eve provides a strong start, as the documentary begins to frame some of the challenges for women in the hip hop space. Continue reading →
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