Insight News

Feb 12th

Chris Rock’s lighthearted look at sisters’ ‘dos arrives on DVD

If you were raised in an African-American community, then you’re probably very familiar with the notion of “good hair,” a term that’s generally applied to folks born with wavy locks which are less trouble to take care of than the more tightly-curled or nappy variety. Back in the Sixties, at the dawn of the black pride movement, the afro was embraced as an alternative to adhering to the white standard of beauty associated with straight hair. But the peasy natural proved to be a short-lived fad which unfortunately has pretty much gone the way of the dashiki and the dinosaur.

Campy spoof of blaxploitation era comes to blu-ray

In recent years, some leading directors have seen fit to pay tribute to the Blaxploitation Era of the Seventies, for instance, Malcolm Lee with Undercover Brother and Quentin Tarantino with Jackie Brown. But where the former was clearly a parody and the latter more of an homage, it’s not so easy to tell exactly what director Scott Sanders is going for in the case of Black Dynamite, a satire or a drama to be taken at face value.

PBS documentary revisits rise of Jazz Age in Paris

The period between World War I and World War II was marked by a cultural renaissance in Paris when a vibrant community of African-American musicians thrived in a section of the city called Montmartre. Many of the initial expatriates to settle there were black U.S. Army veterans who preferred to remain in France rather than return to the repressive system of segregation which awaited them back home in America. Another plus was the French’s rabid enthusiasm for jazz and their appreciation of it as a very sophisticated and innovative art form.

Wendy Williams on Natalie Cole’s past drug addiction and moving forward

Wendy Williams on Natalie Cole’s past drug addiction and moving forwardWendy: Natalie, you’ve been a big sister in my head, and I’ve explained what that is, I went through a thing, and you were already over your thing with drugs in a lot of ways, and, I don’t know, we come from similar families regarding much is expected and there’s no room for mistakes especially being black in this country and trying to move ahead and do things. Your mother and your father put down such a thing for you and you messed it up with drugs.

Jamie Foxx cat-and-mouse thriller comes to DVD

Jamie Foxx cat-and-mouse thriller comes to DVDBurglars Clarence James Darby (Christian Stolte) and Rupert Ames (Josh Stewart) both broke into the suburban Philadelphia home of Clyde Shelton (Gerard Butler) and forced him to sit and watch helplessly as they brutally murdered his wife (Brooke Mills) and daughter (Ksenia Hulayev). However, only one of the perps had to pay for the crime, since the former was permitted to turn state’s evidence and testify against the latter under the terms of a plea deal which let him off with a slap on the wrist. 

Adoptees identity issues examined by blended-family documentary

Adoptees identity issues examined by blended-family documentaryWhen Tovah Klein emigrated from Israel to the United States, she met and fell in love with Midwesterner Travis Cloud. The smitten lesbians subsequently settled in a trendy section of Brooklyn together where they would raise their three adopted children as Jews, sending them to Hebrew school.

What might strike some as strange about this arrangement is that none of the kids had a Jewish background. Rafi, of mixed-ethnicity, was born drug-addicted and with an STD, while his slightly younger sister Avery’s parents were African-Americans from Texas, and little Zay-Zay was a cuddly, Korean orphan.

Book review: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

Book review: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness“Precisely how the system of mass incarceration works to trap African-Americans in a virtual (and literal) cage can best be understood by viewing the system as a whole… The first stage is the roundup [when] vast numbers of people are swept into the criminal justice system by the police, who conduct drug operations primarily in poor communities of color…
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