Tuesday, December 6, 2022


November 7, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

In her review in the New York Times, Manohla Dargis describes the challenges Tyler Perry faced in bringing Ntozake Shange’s acclaimed play, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf, to the screen, then remarks that all of the difficulties “might sound unbearable, but done right it’s thrilling — specific in its pain, universal in its reach — and Mr. Perry works very hard and gets it mostly right.” On the other hand, in USA Today Claudia Puig scorns Perry’s efforts. “Nearly all his creative decisions go wrong,” she writes, adding that he “has wrung the beauty and truth out of the original in almost every way possible.” Perry’s For Colored Girls has movie critics thumb wrestling; few recent films have evoked such fervid artistic contention. Roger Moore in the Orlando Sentinel writes that Perry’s adaptation “is a piece of passion, poetry and ambition.” Mick LaSalle in the San Francisco Chronicle calls it a “serious achievement … smart, lovely work.” But Liam Lacey in the Toronto Globe and Mail calls the movie “a mawkish mess” and adds, “For Perry, his most ambitious film to date exposes his limitations as a director.” Likewise Lisa Kennedy in the Denver Post writes that For Colored Girls “is a bold example of an artist’s reach exceeding his grasp.” Wesley Morris in the Boston Globe suggests that the movie evokes such extreme reaction because Perry goes to extremes in delivering it. “The audience I saw it with didn’t seem to know whether to clap when it was over or start taking Lipitor,” he writes at the beginning of his review and closes it by remarking that Perry’s movie “is caught between wallow and triumph.” And Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times anticipates the extreme reaction to the movie when she writes, “It is a film destined to polarize. Many will hate it. Hopefully more will love it, or at least allow room for it, for its raw brutality, its extremes, its difficult truths.”