Flashback Friday-Love & Basketball (2000)

Sometimes, the person we are meant to be with is the person that we grew up with.

In Love and Basketball (2000),  Quincy (Omar Epps) and Monica (Sanaa Lathan) met when they were 11 years old. Both had a dream of playing basketball professionally, following in the footsteps of Quincy’s father who plays professionally. Their will they/won’t they relationship stretches to high school and college, where they date briefly. But as young love often does, their relationship ends in heartache. Several years pass, and both Quincy and Monica have had some success as professional basketball players.  They meet again and a decision must be made. Will their relationship be contained to the past or is there still unexplored territory?

I like this movie. What draws me in as an audience member is the relationship between the two lead characters. There is something that keeps them coming back to one another, the question is, are they willing to face it?

I recommend it.


The Best Of America

For all of the complaints about The United States, there is something to be said for our idealism and our belief in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

History was made today as the supreme court ruled that same sex couples have the right to get married and receive the same privileges as their heterosexual counterparts.

Marriage is now defined as two adults (regardless of sex) who are ready, willing and able to make a public commitment to each other.

This is not the first landmark case to make history. The ruling carries as much weight as the 19th Amendment (giving women the right to vote) and Loving V. Virginia (the landmark civil right case that broke the anti-miscegenation law that existed in several states).

While we have a long way to go, the fact that this is now the law of the land paves the way for the true democracy that our founding fathers envisioned when they made the bold and dangerous decision to break away from Britain.


Flashback Friday- The Nutty Professor Double Feature-1963 and 1996

As much as we may sometimes wish it, there is no magic elixir to give us what we want. It takes hard work to reach our goals.

But that does not mean that we can dream or that science (in the movies at least) can partially help us reach our goal.

In The Nutty Professor (1963), Professor Julius Kelp (Jerry Lewis) is a nerd with a capitol N.  His social life and his social skills are non existent. To improve upon both and catch the attention of a student whom he’s attracted to, Julius invents a potion that turns him into Buddy Love. Buddy is suave, sexy and has no problem attracting attention, especially from women.  But there is an unforeseen side effect: when Buddy turns back into Julius is unpredictable.  Can Julius control when and where he changes into Buddy or will he be forever at the mercy of the change?

Jerry Lewis is without a doubt a comedy icon. What is interesting about this movie is that is asks a rather existential question: Is it better to be ourselves and hope that the rest of the world likes us or should we turn into someone that we think the world wants us to be.

Thirty three years later, another comedy icon decided to take a crack at The Nutty Professor. This time, Eddie Murphy is the book smart, but socially unintelligent Prof. Sherman Klump. But unlike Lewis’s take on the tale, Sherman’s physique is rather large.  Taken by a fellow teacher, Carla Purty (Jada Pinkett Smith). Feeling like he is stuck in the friend zone with Carla, Sherman invents a potion that changes him into Buddy Love.  But like the previous film, complications ensue when the potion’s after effects become rather obvious.

This film is the first of several films where Eddie Murphy plays more than one character who is on screen at the same time. What I like about both incarnations of the film is that it especially appeals to those who feel like they do not fit in. Whether it is because of the self titled “nerd” or because one is overweight, the story appeals to those who are wishing for a magic potion to make them feel like they fit in.

I recommend both.

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