A lot of people in the film community, whether they’re critics, or bloggers, or filmmakers themselves, are afraid to tell the truth about Tyler Perry. Read the comments section on anyone who does tell the truth about his films, and you’ll know why they’re afraid. But the truth is this: He’s yet to do anything worth watching. He’s shown no sign of actual talent as a filmmaker. His movies are amateurish at best. As a director, he’s uninspired, little better than Uwe Boll. As a writer, his characters are one-dimensional stereotypes. His movies are the stuff of mid-day afternoon soap operas. This isn’t just an opinion, even on a basic technical level his movies are generally, colossal failures. They’re all the technical equivalent of a boom mic hanging in frame. His fans rather generously overlook all of that, because he writes movies which service their point of view. But that doesn’t make him a good filmmaker, and there’s never been anything in his work to indicate that he might be capable of doing anything truly good. Until now that is.
Below you’re about to watch the For Colored Girls trailer. It’s Perry’s new movie and based on the half-dozen or so other Tyler Perry movies which came before it, I’ll understand if you want to simply assume it’s terrible and avoid it. That’s a safe assumption. But this trailer has something that no other Tyler Perry movie has ever truly had before: Style. It seems to have an honest to god, visual style all its own. And I don’t mean a bland, ridiculous, soap opera style. I mean this actually looks like a movie, as opposed to a really bad episode of Guiding Light.
Watch the first For Colored Girls trailer below or in HD on Yahoo.
Still hanging around? For those of you who aren't already part of the Perry devoted, what did you think? Is there promise here? I’d love for this to be the place where Perry finally lives up to his box office totals. Besides, this is a cast which deserved to be in a good movie. I’ll watch Phylicia Rashad in anything. Remember when Whoopi Goldberg could act?
Even if Perry has finally figured out some sort of honest to god visual style, the trailer’s credits claim he wrote the script, and that’s probably not a healthy notion. It’s not as if Perry has gone outside his comfort zone here, he’s beating the same race and religion drum, which hasn’t worked at all before. Except IMDB claims the screenplay was written by Nzingha Stewart. Does that mean he had help? Is Perry padding his writing resume? If someone else wrote it is there reason for hope?
UPDATE! For Colored Girls is now in theaters. For our in-depth review of the film, go right here.