EnSpired: From The Car to The Red Carpet: It’s Ryan Coogler, Director of Black Panther

photo above courtesy of bing

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Okay, so unless you’ve been M.I.A for the past month, don’t have a television or just don’t go to the movies – AT ALL! then maybe you weren’t aware of a movie called “Black Panther” in which grossed more than 240 million dollars (US) and over 400 million worldwide in it’s opening weekend of (February 16, 2018); which is the highest grossing opening of all time, according to Vanity Fair. Continue reading “EnSpired: From The Car to The Red Carpet: It’s Ryan Coogler, Director of Black Panther”

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10 Black Movie Classics You Must See or Re-watch for Black History Month

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Black History Month is here and while the month is short and will be over before you know it, it’s a month where African-Americans of times past and present are honored for their sacrifices, achievements and accomplishments marked throughout history. It’s a time for us to reflect on that rich history and celebrate the lives of the ones lost and present whom paved the way for generations of other African Americans to walk in freedom and while this movement is still a “work in progress” for the most part, we’re proud that they stood fearlessly in the face of adversity to make sure we have some of the luxuries we have today such as the right to vote.

One way to honor and look back on African-American culture, history, activists and the actors that played them or played parts representing such troubling times is by way of a movie. I personally love watching movies, especially the ones that portray the African-American men and women whom did so much for us. So, if you just happen to have a down day this month and want to celebrate the occasion, listed below are 10 Classic movies portrayed by African-Americans that you should watch in honor of Black History Month. In no particular order they are:

‘Purple Rain’

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What better way to celebrate black history and the life of late-great music legend Prince. The musical drama features some of Prince’s most iconic songs and killer outfits.

‘Malcolm X’

Malcolm X

‘Malcolm X’ is was Spike Lee classic, portrayed by Denzel Washington. The movie chronicled the life of the civil rights hero.

‘Selma’

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Ava DuVernay made history with ‘Selma’ in 2014, becoming the first black woman to have her film nominated for “Best Picture” at the Oscars. ‘Selma’ is a portrait piece of Dr. Martin Luther King as he led the march from Selma to Montgomery for voting rights.

‘Glory’

Glory

Free black men were conscripted to fight in the Union Army during the Civil War, but as this 1989 period drama shows, not even their willingness to sacrifice their lives for their country was enough to shield them from racism and segregation. Denzel Washington stars in the role that would nab him his first Oscar.

‘Barry’

Barry

‘Barry’ is one of two drama films (of what will surely be many) that take a glimpse at the life of a younger former President Barack Obama, the man who would one day become the first black president of the United States.

‘The Princess & the Frog’

Princess and Frog

In 2009, Disney made history by featuring its first ever African-American princess. Anika Noni-Rose portrayed princess Tiana in this film. It’s a beautiful film in which is sure to inspire little girls of all diverse backgrounds that she too can be “A Princess”

‘The Color Purple’

Color Purple

Okay, so there’s really nothing to say about this one but – CLASSIC!!! – No matter how many times I’ve seen this movie – I always need my tissues….

‘The Wiz’

The Wiz

‘The Wiz’ in which stars Diana Ross and a very young Michael Jackson is the black version of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ story.

‘Carmen Jones’

Carmen Jones

Dorothy Dandridge became the first black woman to be nominated for a Best Actress award at the 1954 Oscars for her role in this epic musical, based on Bizet’s tragic opera ‘Carmen.’

‘A Raisin in the Sun’

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Starring Ruby Dee and Sidney Poitier, this 1961 adaptation of Lorraine Hansberry‘s play is a film about an African-American family search for the American Dream and what happens when that dream is derailed. While the older version is a true classic, the newer 2008 version in which stars Sean Combs (a.k.a P. Diddy), Sanaa Lathan, Audra McDonald & Phylicia Rashad are performances in which you wouldn’t want to miss.

These movies are sure to give you a dose of the richness of the African-American culture and a sense of why we should celebrate this month each year. We’re not just celebrating the culture but we’re acknowledging the people whom broke barriers in every arena which makes us glad to be a part of such an amazing history. You can find other classics listed here. Did your favorite make the list? If not, then what African American movie(s) are your favorite classics? Let me know in the comments.

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Review: My Monday Movie Favorite Is….

photo above courtesy of bing

Question of Faith2

Have you ever questioned God?, I mean – I know that might be a silly question because to be honest; we all have questioned him at one point in time or the other. We question him when he sends us on a path that we’re unsure of, We question him when hard times hit us out of nowhere and We question him when our lives don’t seem to add up the the plans that we had for it – In times like that, we have so many questions and very little trust in a man that has a plan for everything – including tragedies.

In the movie “A Question of Faith” you’ll see three different families of whom’s life all come strategically together by crisis in which drives all their faith to the ultimate test. The movie in which stars, Richard T. Jones, Kim Fields, Jaci Valasquez, T.C. Stallings, C. Thomas Howell, Gregory Alan Williams and Renee O’Connor was produced by Angela White, film producer, talent and business affairs executive and founder of Silver Lining Entertainment. To her accreditation, White is the producer of several films including “The Sin Seer” starring Isaiah Washington, Lisa Arrindell & Salli Richardson (in which is now in my Netflix list of movies to watch), “My Favorite Five” which stars Rochelle Aytes, Brian White & DeRay Davis (this movie was hilarious and on point; single ladies will love this one – I sure did), “The Last Letter” and “The Comedy Underground Series.” In producing “A Question of Faith”-  Angela White became the first African-American female to release a theatrical faith based film (Go Girl!!!)

Angela White

‘A Question of Faith’ transcends time, race, gender, class and religious ideology. This is a film that can open one’s heart and make a person reevaluate some of their own personal life decisions. We want people to walk away knowing the word of God is there to comfort you and that having faith in what you can not see is okay, as God has your  life covered, and the questions you may have are already answered.  

Angela White, Producer of “A Question of Faith” 

 

A Question of Faith, is a beautiful story of how God may not always answer our prayers in the way that we think  he should and while we may have many, many questions in regards to the direction of our lives; if we can truly put our trust in him, he has plan and will never, ever let us down. It’s a film that will make you rejoice, think about your own life and cry in the process, knowing that God is not only a healer but a restorer of FAITH! I wasn’t able to make the screenings of this movie when it first came out in September, but I’m so glad, as now it’s at the redbox and available for everyone to see and trust me, you’ll definitely want to rent this one for movie night this week. Spoiler Alert!!! – you’re going to need a BUNCH of tissues!!! I cried and cried and even had to do a couple of rewinds, it was just that powerful and uplifting.

The movie also raises awareness about texting and driving and organ donation in which I thought were good causes and glad that the affects of each, can be recognized and put on display. I know you’ll get something out of this movie – if you’ve ever had questions about God’s plan for your life, this movie will sure give you the Faith you need to still believe. You can follow Angela White on Instagram – as I know for sure, she has many, many more things up her sleeve for 2018!!

For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to prosper you, to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

So, grab your family, popcorn and your tissues and rent “A Question of Faith”

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

5 Spooky/Thriller Movies You Must See Before Halloween Ends!

picture above courtesy of mashable

So, tomorrow is Halloween and if you’re anything like me, you’re probably wondering what to do and how to celebrate it. First let me say, I’m not a big Halloween person myself – although I do love seeing the crazy, ridiculous, scary or cute costumes that people come up with; but now that I have older children, I’ll get to why I said “older” in a minute. They are always pumped about going trick-or-treating or participating in costume contest at school, well my son is that is, my daughter, ehhhh….she’s all about the treat instead of the trick, so I find myself every year, trying to figure out someplace cool for them to go….I mean, just because I’m not a major Halloween fan doesn’t mean that I want them to suffer in the process.

When they were younger, (like some months old, one or two years of age) I didn’t have to worry so much of them looking at me with sad eyes wanting to go trick or treating, Of course I would dress them up when they went to daycare so they can participate in their classes, but doing anything that night was totally out of the question, However; I do remember taking my daughter around in a stroller when she was 1yrs old from house to house getting candy (my mom’s idea). I just put a little mask on her and there we went, from house to house on Halloween getting candy. It felt a little awkward at first as I surely believed everyone thought, a young baby like that was not going to be eating the candy…but the grown woman was. (Probably why I didn’t get that much)

Yeah Right Face
The look I received when I walked up to the door with my daughter….LOL

Anyway, it was an okay night but I couldn’t wait to get back home – the things we do for our parents…While that was great, years ago – now that my son and daughter are much older they look forward to doing something “great” on Halloween. Let’s face it, Halloween isn’t like it used to be when I was growing up in which is why the “trunk or treats” have become ever so popular alongside organizations having a big Halloween bash within a safe environment for everyone to enjoy. I have to say I do take notice of those things and do attend but I’m a home body and also enjoy staying indoors. So if you’re not that into trunk or treats or big crowds – maybe you can have your own Halloween gathering safely inside your own home.

One year, I did this and it was awesome! – I rented a couple of scary movies, bought some pizzas, chips, cupcakes, candy bags, drinks and we celebrated Halloween at home. So, if going out and celebrating Halloween is not your thing; then maybe staying indoors will fit the bill. While I won’t be able to help with the party food, I can definitely suggest a couple of scary/thriller movies to rent that will make your Halloween night “indoors” spookier.

Listed below are my recent favorite thrillers in which you and the kids (even their friends) or you and your friends or family can watch to SPOOK the night off.

Annabelle CreationMy Rating 9

Annabelle-Creation-Box-Office

She’s back! In Annabelle: Creation, several years after the tragic death of their little girl, a doll maker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home. They soon become the target of the doll maker’s possessed creation, Annabelle.

Wish UponMy Rating 8

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Clare Shannon, a 17-year old, is haunted by the memory of her mother’s suicide. Her father Jonathan, a former musician and compulsive hoarder who dumpster dives as a hobby, finds a Chinese music box and gives it to her as a gift. Clare deciphers one of the numerous inscriptions on the box as “Seven Wishes,” and absent-mindedly wishes for Darcie, her tormentor and school bully, to “rot,” at which point her wish comes true and the girl is admitted into the ICU. That same day, Clare’s dog Max dies in her house’s crawlspace after being eaten alive by rats. Clare realizes that the box grants wishes, but does not realize her wishes come with consequences.

Don’t BreatheMy Rating 9

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Three young thieves fight for their lives after breaking into the home of a blind man who has a dark side and isn’t so helpless as he seems.

Get OutMy Rating 10

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It’s time for a young African American to meet with his white girlfriend’s parents for a weekend in their secluded estate in the woods, but before long, the friendly and polite ambience will give way to a nightmare.

Lights OutMy Rating 8.5

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Rebecca must unlock the terror behind her little brother’s experiences that once tested her sanity, bringing her face to face with an entity attached to their mother a dark spirit by the name of Diana.

The BoyMy Rating 8

tHE bOY

An American nanny is shocked that her new English family’s boy is actually a life-sized doll. After she violates a list of strict rules, disturbing events make her believe that the doll is really alive.

Dead SilenceMy Rating 8.5

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A young widower returns to his hometown to search for answers to his wife’s murder, which may be linked to the ghost of a murdered ventriloquist.

***    ****   ***

And that’s it, those are my top faves. I hope this post was helpful to you and provided some great choices for picking out a movie for Halloween, most of these movies can be found at your local redbox – in which makes the night even more affordable. I wish you and yours a very good Halloween and if you have a scary movie that you enjoy, let me know in the comments – I would love to watch it!!

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Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud, Love Hard & Inspire Often!