Mother of George, a film by Andrew Dosunmu
The most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen on film. Too moved right now to go into it, will try to write a review tomorrow. I’ll just say that my eyes didn’t sweat during the movie—I was on the edge of my seat, barely breathing edge of my seat. But thinking back about scenes from the movie, they sweated in the car on the way home. New experience entirely, this after-the-fact eye-sweating. I highly recommend this to anyone. Especially those of you hungry for other narratives from the continent, Nigeria specifically here. If you’ve wanted to see and know more than aid, famine, genocide, colonialism, political corruption, safaris, and HIV/AIDS in Africa, this is the movie for you. You won’t regret it. Everyone won’t.
Good Sunday morning. Y’all send up some prayers in y’all’s houses of worship today that citizens will pay attention more to the important stuff, party a lil less, and express their anger about the ish currently happening by doing something about it at the polls. You know, where it counts. Not on Facebook and twitter where all they do is share memes. O’an watch twerking videos. And how about we turn up for presidential and mid-term and local elections, all, not just the ones where the press might be there and you can prolly be on your local news station for standing in a long line. Waving at your mama ‘n them behind the reporter’s head, into the camera. Y’all don’t hear me. Hallelujah anyhow.
I’m a Rihanna fan, through and through. A few years ago, when she did the duet w/ JT “Rehab” my sister remarked to me “Why do you like her so much? She never has on any clothes! She’s always naked” I’m guessing to her my unapologetic feminism should make me disappointed/angry with the decreasing numbers of bits of clothing she wears with each new album, with each hotter-than-the-last single, and the stop-your-breath videos. I haven’t seen all of her videos, by far, because I don’t really like them the way that I did as an adolescent, but did my mouth gape open bc I felt that even this had somehow surpassed all of the other moments of clothes-less-ness and dripping sexuality? Yes, it did. I can’t help it. I can’t think of any Rihanna songs that I don’t like, except for that very first single when she was a teen w/ that awful weave in the video.
I don’t really like this song, but I don’t mind it. It’s my beloved girl-crush Rhi-rhi, so I’m bound to shake my ass to it whenever it comes up on my sister’s ipod—the only way I hear it. My overwhelming thoughts are that I remember the interview she did with Oprah when she gave her mama the house and talked about that domestic abuser and all … Oprah asked her what she thought about the fact that a men’s magazine had said she was the “essence of fucking”. My beloved Rihanna seemed visibly disturbed by this title. She said something like she didn’t understand why men would say something like that about her—she was just an artist expressing herself, yada yada. So in the first 30 seconds of this, that moment came right back to me. Does anyone else remember that? I thought, but dearest Rihanna, this video—and other things you’ve made choices to do in your career—is exactly why you’ve been given such a title. Was she genuinely surprised? Being coy? Embarrassed that Oprah was questioning her about this part of her image? Or does she earnestly not understand the thought processes behind how images of herself like the ones in this video draw a straight line for men, and whoever else is looking, which compels them to consider her “the essence of fucking”. Not sex, not making love, not doing it—but “the essence of FUCKING”. The precision of that linguistic choice is undeniable, telling, and language that I happen to agree with.
I’m not judging her, though I could if I wanted to, but she must be aware and more deliberate in the choices she makes. Or is she already, and just wants the rest of us to think she’s clueless—a sophisticated, agency-enacting scheme, that’s she’s laughing all the way to the bank about as her singles and albums explode records set by all of the biggest, baddest artists … if that’s what she’s doing. Also, and maybe because I just read Sinead’s two open letters to Miley an hour or so ago … while I was reading the first one, at least, all I could think was—save the licking of a sledgehammer, etc (haven’t seen the video)—the exact letter could have been penned to my darling, sexy, coy, sensitive, savvy, energetic, Barbra Streisand-esque-nails-wearing Rihanna. From the first word to the last. Oh yeah, and when she was smoking the cigar or whatever that was, she looked high. Not like a cool, cigar-smoking chick, but under the influence of a mind/mood-altering substance. As though “they’ve” drugged her in order to get her to perform for them in this wanton, thoughtless (perhaps) manner.