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Movie Mom

Movie Mom

I’m Through With White Girls

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, including some sexual references
Profanity:Very strong language
Nudity/Sex:Explicit sexual references and non-explicit situations
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking, smoking
Violence/Scariness:None
Diversity Issues:A theme of the movie
Movie Release Date:2008
DVD Release Date:2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, including some sexual references
Profanity: Very strong language
Nudity/Sex: Explicit sexual references and non-explicit situations
Alcohol/Drugs: Drinking, smoking
Violence/Scariness: None
Diversity Issues: A theme of the movie
Movie Release Date: 2008
DVD Release Date: 2008

Another unexpected pleasure I came across on cable recently is a light romantic comedy with some shrewd and audacious commentary on race and gender, whose full title is “I’m Through with White Girls (The Inevitable Undoing of Jay Brooks).” Anthony Montgomery (Ensign Mayweather on “Enterprise”) plays an African-American man who creates graphic novels and uses a cigarette holder. After a series of bad experiences dating white girls (they break up with him and berate him for being inconsiderate), he decides that he should date an African-American girl, calling his quest “Operation Brown Sugar.” The first group of contestants don’t seem right. And then he meets Catherng (Lia Johnson), a writer with magnificent dreds who turns out to be “Halfrican-Canadian.”

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What makes the usual romantic comedy complications so fresh and engaging here is the way all of the characters subvert stereotypes. Though Catherine’s book is very successful due to her voice as an author, her literal voice, which she describes as sounding like a Valley Girl, especially when she is nervous, makes her afraid of promoting the book at readings. Jay creates graphic novels (he keeps correcting people who refer to them as comic books), a field with few African-Americans. Meanwhile, his white roommate has to pretend to be (and then become) an expert in hip-hop in order to impress the girl he likes.

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Johnson (who co-produced) and Montgomery are enormously appealing performers with real romantic spark. The conventional structure and understated tone help the racial and gender issues a part of the story rather than a political statement. But both the romance and the themes make this a neglected gem, well worth watching.

Parents should know that this movie has some mature material including sexual references and non-explicit situations.

  • http://www.associatedcontent.com/slideshow/13329/cyber_rainbows_and_digital_dreams.html?cat=2 Cyber Rainbow

    You review was a pleasure to read. Keep up the good work.

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    Thank you so much! Nothing in my job makes me happier than bringing a neglected film to a wider audience.

  • Joe Blow

    A story about a black guy that doesn’t want to date white women? Maybe I should check this out tonight. I’m in the mood for some fantastical science fiction.

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    It’s an honor to hear from you, Joe Blow. And I think you’ll like this film — let me know.

  • U No Who

    I enjoyed this movie as a great lighthearted cable surprise discovery. But did anyone else think this must have been finaced by the tobacco companies because talk about rediculous chain smoking. Unbelievable, and it had nothing to do with the plot

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    I’m glad you enjoyed it, U No! And I agree entirely that the smoking was over the top and a distraction. We’re way past the point where smoking conveys edginess and hipness!

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Michelle

    I saw this movie a few days ago and absolutely lovd the actors and the plot. It was different, and quirly and the characters were very interesting.

    • Nell Minow

      Thanks, Michelle! I’m so glad you saw this film — I loved it, too! I hope more people take notice of it.

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