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STUDIO: Image Entertainment
RUNNING TIME: 93 minutes
• Commentary with cast and crew
• Theatrical trailer
• Deleted/extended scenes
• “How to Make Dreadlocks”
Guy swears off white girls. That title’s pretty self-explanatory, folks.
Anthony Montgomery. Lia Johnson. Ryan Alosio. Lamman Rucker. Kellee Stewart. Lisa Brenner. A slew of Showtime folks who you recognize but can’t exactly name.
Jay Brooks (Enterprise‘s Anthony Montgomery) is a 30-something graphic novel illustrator who’s all about indie music, video games, and naturally, white girls – much to the chagrin of his black brethren. In an opening montage, we learn that Jay’s not all that great with these aforementioned women. Up until this point, he’s made it a habit to leave them when things got too comfortable and his commitment-phobia finds him leaving break-up notes to unsuspecting white girls everywhere. So begins “Operation: Brown Sugar” – wherein Jay makes it a point to adhere strictly to a diet that makes no room for Caucasian females, in an attempt to find that perfect “sistah.”
Full disclosure: I am not the target audience for this movie. Or other movies of the urban comedy genre, as my DVD club affectionately calls them. Tyler Perry? Not really my thing. I’m not going to make this a dissertation on black cinema or anything (is anyone really doubting that I’m able to distinguish notable fare by Charles Burnett or say, Spike Lee for instance, with this?) but I do want to point out that there’s a market for DTV broad comedies with black casts and I’m simply just not a part of it. Same thing with the tween-love musical comedy, the family road trip comedy adventure, or the sentient-plant-wrought-apocalypse thriller. Ya know, just not my idea of a matinee.
So with that in mind, let’s talk about I’m Through With White Girls.
Whiteville. Population: Jamie Kennedy.
As you can guess, Jay does eventually meet the “one.” But damn, if this movie doesn’t take it’s time getting there. There’s a montage of our hero on a bunch of bad dates with a plethora of non-white women so hamfistedly caricatured, you have to wonder if it wasn’t some deliberate send-up on these stereotypes often presented in other, lesser fare (my guess: no). After much hunting, Jay meets someone: the quirky and off-kilter Catherine Williamson (Lia Johnson), an up-and-coming author who just finished her most recent work to much critical acclaim. There’s actually an interesting chemistry between the two and Montgomery’s charming enough to get away with the loser-who-gets-the-girl-way-out-of-his-league thing. Their relationship is put to the same familiar tests that anyone who has been watching prime-time sitcoms in the last 10 years will call right off the bat (he doesn’t read her book!). It’s the guy who meets the right one and doesn’t have enough common sense to know what to do when he’s got her story. It’s a tried and true formula, albeit one that really should be funny or at least entertaining enough to justify it’s existence.
Many of the faces were unknown to me, but the two leads are affable for the most part, especially when they’re allowed to play off each other. The rest of the cast ranges from okay to sometimes just annoying. Courtney Lilly penned the script and it’s a modest feature debut, but it falls for the same tropes and pratfalls that most sitcoms do. Not surprising, considering Lilly’s background in television, although one of those sitcoms to her name happened to be the much-beloved Arrested Development and the sometimes amusing Everybody Hates Chris. It’s pretty apparent the film’s a first effort with the lensing looking like your run of the mill TV show with the odd cutaways, the awkwardly framed close-ups, et al.
Moments of peril and Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual” brought out Jay’s fight-or-flight instinct.
I can’t help but be blunt: I‘m Through With White Girls is pretty bland. It’s hard to muster any positive or negative feelings about a movie this forgettable, so there is the fact that it is pretty harmless which isn’t a detractor I suppose. Really, the biggest offense is that it’s a comedy completely devoid of any laughs. I may have smiled once or twice but I hardly think that counts. It’s just one of those movies. While I wouldn’t go so far as to call this movie a disappointment, it does squander an opportunity to say something, or anything, about the modern conflict that still exists in interracial relationships. The movie’s more about the hesitance associated with commitment and reaching outside one’s comfort zone than anything else. Still, I’m pretty sure the movie’s content to be just that.
This DVD comes with a few EPK clips, as well as an interesting feature on how Lia Johnson maneuvered through her characters various hair color changes and the process of applying the dreadlocks. Also present is a commentary that’s pretty dull, but you get the impression the actors enjoyed working with each other quite a bit (not that they’d admit otherwise. Hell, you hear similar sentiments in commentaries for James Cameron movies). A lot them are still cutting their teeth trying to find a break in bigger work, and this is brought up a few times in the other features. It’s friends helping friends and that’s admirable.
There’s also a bunch of trailers for films you’ll never see. Also, that cover however, is so misleading. There aren’t even any naked white girls in this.
4.5 out of 10