Thursday, January 08, 2009

Not Easily Broken

Quite honestly the official trailer for this dramatic film does it a disservice, which is why I've been hesitant to post it here. If "Not Easily Broken" is about a young, Black couple experiencing problems in their marriage where are those poignant scenes between them that make you emote--feel something deeper than simply "this is movie about a dude hanging out with his boys too much and losing sight of what's important--his marriage." Did I sum that up properly?

Just take a moment and compare the "Not Easily Broken" trailer with that of "Revolutionary Road" and you'll understand why this entertainment blogger is a tad disappointed in how this potentially good film has been short changed even before it hits theaters TODAY. Yeah, I know the individual budgets for them are as far apart as east and west, but that shouldn't mean the trailer for "Broken" should be any less effective. But then again, maybe the content needed for a really strong trailer doesn't exist. Wrong! It does! Here's a clip.

Sony posted that clip online. It speaks to the core of this couple's relationship, so why isn't it or something similar not in the official trailer--the most visible marketing and promotional tool? Let me guess: 1. They didn't want to scare the church folk; 2. Didn't want to alienate black men; or 3. The Hollywood formula.

A small Hollywood budget divided by Morris Chestnutt + Taraji P. Henson + TD Jakes = a black movie that we predict will only appeal to a small black audience thus small green profit at the box office but will do well on the back end, ie...DVD. Just give then a "nice" trailer.

And based on just general conversations with some people and recent observances, the Hollywood suits are somewhat right--just somewhat. There's a sense of "I'll watch it on DVD" or "I'm not paying to see that in the theaters" going around thanks to the lackluster trailer. So sadly, those of us that should know better will act as if Hollywood produces quality, dramatic films about African-American couples everyday--and not give it the financial support it needs THIS WEEKEND.

Hollywood only cares about money, the bottom line. Paying to see "Not Easily Broken" at THE BOX OFFICE this weekend is paramount because it will gauge how much money will be budgeted for the producers' next film. That affects the actors too. If they can't pull a huge audience, they can't command multi-million dollar contracts from the studios. So if we can roll deep to comedies, certainly Bishop Jakes, Taraji, Morris, and Bill Duke deserve the same for a quality dramatic production about something relevant that speaks to us right now.

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