The secret at the center of the story — the meaning behind “Rosebud” — provides the film’s core critique of the American Dream.
He too believes in the money = power = women formula, but at least to Gatsby, his actions are done in pursuit of love. Essentially, the way Gatsby sees Daisy is the same way that viewers see the concept of the American Dream. One of the earliest films of the New Hollywood era, this classic counterculture film is also one of the most interesting critiques of the American Dream. This idea also plays out against the backdrop of the hippie movement, which sought freedom through the liberal use of drugs.
You might be thinking that this list is a pretty heavily focused on male interpretations of the American dream. They want that Hefner-esque fantasy Manny Ray (Tony’s best friend) was dreaming about back in Scarface, but with James Franco filling in for Hefner. Truly a good list, otherwise, you’ve made great comparisons between certain films and reaffirmed the significance of a couple favourites. During the silent era, where segregation was prominent, a small circuit of theaters for African Americans developed. Sporadic African American films were made during the late 1910’s, with very minimal success, often ending up as unknown short films.
Oscar Micheaux set the stepping stones for future African American directors to eventually become part of the American film culture. Puertorrican couple Lissete (Lauren Velez) and Chino face marriage difficulties as he is sent to jail because of robbing a stereo from a local convenience store.
This film made Darnell Martin, originally Spike Lee’s assistant director, the first African-American female to direct a film produced by a major film studio.
Set in Harlem circa 1987, sixteen year old Precious, pregnant with her second child, enrolls in an alternative school with hopes of a better future. The movie was based on the novel Push which was written by a night school teacher who saw people living under these conditions. Four Harlem teenagers,Q, Bishop, Raheem and Steel find out on the news a friend was killed at a bar they had been minutes before. The director is a renowned cinematographer, the reason why the movie has some exquisite visuals, especially the DJ contest and the chase scene at the end. Pariah means being without status or name, the central conflict of the Brooklyn teenager Alike, the main character of the film. What was great from this film was the character psychology, not only focusing on basketball nor the love dilemma, but the family situations as well. Menace II Society provides intense experiences of adolescent hormonal rage against circumstances powerful enough for surrendering to the narrative. Caine, a young street hustler, appears to have nothing to live for, a pre existentialist cut a drift by nature itself. Amy Poehler (September 16, 1971) was a cast member on the NBC television show Saturday Night Live from 2001 to 2009 for which she recieved two Primetime Emmy Award nominations forOutstanding Supporting Actress. Alexis Bledel (September 16, 1981) Actress and model has appeared in several successful movies.
Jennifer Tilly (September 16, 1958) Canadian-American film and television actress, and professional poker player is an Academy Award nominee and a World Series of Poker Ladies’Event bracelet winner. Cassandra Peterson (September 17, 1951) American actress best known for her on-screen horror hostess character Elvira, Mistress of the Dark.
Jada Pinkett Smith (September 18, 1971) Actress and wife of Will Smith, Jada has appeared in over 20 films including The Nutty Professor, Scream 2, Ali, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, and the Madagascar Film Series. Sanaa Lathan (September 19, 1971) Actress has starred in many films, including the box-office hits The Best Man, Love & Basketball, Brown Sugar, Alien vs. Trisha Yearwood (September 19, 1964) Multi award winning singer, author and actress is a member of the Grand Ole Opry and was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 2000.
Sophia Loren (September 20, 1934) Italian actress has won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, five special Golden Globes, a BAFTA Award, a Laurel Award as well as the Honorary Academy Award in 1991. Bill Murray (September 21, 1950) Popular actor and comedian gained critical acclaim after starring in Lost in Translation (2003), which earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor nomination. Faith Hill (September 21, 1967) Country pop singer has sold more than 40 million records worldwide. Bonnie Hunt (September 22, 1961) Actress has appeared in the films Rain Man, Beethoven, Beethoven’s 2nd, Jumanji, Jerry Maguire, The Green Mile, Cheaper by the Dozen, and Cheaper by the Dozen 2.
Laura Vandervoort (September 22, 1984) Canadian actress best known for her roles as Sadie Harrison in the Canadian television series Instant Star, Kara Zor-El in the American television series Smallville, and Lisa in the ABC science fiction series V.
This entry was posted in Celebrity Birthdays and tagged Alexis Bledel, Amy Poehler, bill murray, Bonnie Hunt, Cassandra "Elvira" Peterson, Celebrity Birthdays, Cheryl Hines, Faith Hill, Jada Pinkett Smith, Jennifer Tilley, Laura Vandervoort, Sanaa Lathan, Sophia Loren, Trisha Yearwood. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.
The story of a self-made man who becomes fabulously wealthy at the expense of his own happiness is one of the most frequently emulated stories in American cinema.
Visually, Welles takes this idea to the absolute extremes, surrounding Charles Foster Kane with material wealth that only serves to further isolate him from the rest of the world as opposed to enriching him. His simple impoverished childhood, as symbolized by his sled, was the only time he felt happy in his life. His brutal climb to the top of a Miami drug empire turns a mirror on the film’s American audience and forces them to consider how an outsider might view the promise of wealth in America. It is a forever distant paradise that both Gatsby and viewers believe they can steadily climb towards. He is often criticized as a “style over substance” filmmaker, but that’s why adaptation is a good ground for him.


After scoring a huge sum of money from a Mexican drug deal, two hippies, Wyatt and Billy, make the road trip from L.A.
It depicts two very different Americas, each with its own imperfect definition of the American Dream. I think that’s because, at its most basic conception, the Dream is inherently tied up into our notions of traditional masculinity, where the man of the house is still obligated to be the primary bread winner. It’s not just about a feminized version of the American Dream, but one for the millennial generation.
It’s a hedonistic voyage where sex, drugs and recklessness are valued over intellect, hard work, or caution.
Throughout the movie, two of the four protagonists become terrified by the danger their free vacation poses to them and literally leave the story.
The reason behind this was the multiple protests held by African Americans who wanted better representation in the motion picture industry.
During the 1920’s, black roles were minimal and stereotypical, often limiting actors for characters that portrayed them as jokes and servants. Thus, after the black power and the civil rights movements in 1965, more opportunities emerged. He manipulates church goers with his sermons, taking advantage of this to rape their innocent daughters and steal their money.
This leaves the family with no income and loss of parental control over their children, ultimately leaving Lissete in a desperate situation.
Even if the film is centered around a harsh lifestyle, Martin makes this story about a woman attempting to maintain her marriage by focusing on her own success.
It is a tale of an adolescent girl who has endured chronic emotional, physical and sexual abuse, yet manages to keep hope.
In order to redeem the friend’s life they decide to also rob a local store in their own pursuit of respect known as “the juice”. This focus on visuals does not limit the story’s potential, the director should also be given merit for developing a unique twist that separates this film from other crime dramas. In a desperate attempt to find her own sexual identity, she struggles with her friends, her family, and even her own heart.
It clearly reflects the character’s inner turmoil throughout the film, and demonstrates her great ingeniousness at writing.
It is a four decade long love story between two basketball players whose passion for the game is the secret to each other’s soul. It’s unflinching look at the despair and hopelessness of the young black male urban reality leaves aghast any spectator who presences it.
He attempts to escape the temptations of the ghetto in order to have a better life with his mentor’s girlfriend and son. Larenz Tate, who dramatized O-dog, is essentially the highlight of the opening scene of the movie. He manages to graduate out of high school and has people who believe in him, but his upbringing and environment does not help him understand that there are other paths in life. This list of 2000s black films feature acclaimed turns from Will Smith, Beyonce Knowles, Jamie Foxx, and Denzel Washington. Popular with teens and young adults, Bledel has also graced the cover of numerous mainstream magazines including WWD, People, Teen People, Teen Vogue, Teen, TV Guide, Seventeen, Elle Girl, Nylon, Vanity Fair, Latina and Entertainment Weekly. Hill has won five Grammy Awards, fourteen Academy of Country Music Awards, and four American Music Awards. From the outside, Kane’s estate of Xanadu feels like it should be a pleasure palace, but it soon transforms into a prison. He becomes increasingly egotistical up until the final climactic scene, further isolating himself from every one in his life. Scott Fitzgerald, on which the 2013 film is based, features the same simplification of the male American Dream. He has loved Daisy from afar for so long that he doesn’t understand how to translate those emotions to the real world. Yet that pursuit is ultimately a flawed one, Gatsby chooses not to enjoy his current life in the hopes that it will earn him a fantastical one. Fitzgerald provides the substance allowing Luhrmann to imprint his signature flair on to it. He states that while America talks constantly about freedom, it is secretly hostile to anyone who is actually free. We’re rich!” To which Wyatt replies, “We blew it.” For Wyatt, the Dream isn’t just about reaching financial success as it is for Billy. It’s about four girls relentlessly pursuing their idealized version of spring break that the media has been selling them since puberty. The protagonists of the film see the beaches of Florida as the ultimate escape from their lives. I have no love for American Beauty so I don’t tend to offer myself into discussions involving it, but really? These uprisings were in part inspired by the controversial film The Birth of a Nation (1915), which featured the Ku Klux Klan as heroes and black people as villains.
These series of unfortunate events, in which African Americans could only watch movies designed for white audiences led to the rise of black filmmakers.
One of these victims happens to be Isabelle, the daughter of Martha, a devoted church member.
This is presented with close ups featuring sinister laughs while witnessing his sinful works. Not even their parents support them: Lisette’s mother is only focused on her own life while Chino’s mother, Rosaria, is too busy proclaiming her Castilian heritage.


Rather than a story of tragedy, it is one of empowerment, in which Precious overcomes her nightmarish journey and learns to see the beauty of life.
She was sexually abused by her father, has contracted AIDS, lives with a mother dependent on welfare who accuses her own daughter of “taking her man”, and her first child called Mongo has down syndrome.
Director Lee Daniels made the stars shine with amazing performances especially by Mo’Nique, whose powerful dramatization of a ruthless mother brought the character to life. It is a reaction to movies that glamorize violence by demonstrating the consequences of trying to gain power by squeezing the trigger. She is presented as an ordinary straight A student who hides from her conservative family her homosexuality.
It is incredibly beautiful of the director to portray such a strong character as it is, with a contemporary controversial problem that has yet to be accepted by society. It is a double or nothing standard between Quincy (played by Omar Epps) and Monica (Sanaa Lathan). Since the film starts with both protagonists as little kids, the influence of their parents is very much present.
He clearly has a lack of conscience as he murders the Korean shopkeepers of the store without any guilt.
The film presents society as the real menace, rather than these men, as it stirs away from the tradition of happy endings. Unsurprisingly, several of these black movies released in the 2000s won Oscars, but with this '00s black movie list, you can decide which films were really the best.What are some of the top '00s black films?
Then when you get the power, then you get the woman.” Tony’s formula for success in America is a perversion of the Dream, one which equates material wealth as a means to buy your way to a Hefner-esque male fantasy.
What it reveals about the motivations behind the American Dream is that, for Tony, it was less about earning your freedom from others, but about imposing your dominance over others. Through years of hard work, Jay Gatsby reinvents himself into America’s version of a living god — a fabulously rich man — all in the hopes that it will earn him the love of Daisy Buchanan.
Daisy, on the other hand, is thoroughly practical, and refuses to toss away her profitable but unhappy marriage for a chance at chasing a dream.
The first detail you learn about Gatsby is really the only one you need to know: he’s a millionaire who throws parties he himself does not attend.
It’s a compelling period piece that captures the opulence of the era with a soundtrack that cleverly keeps it relevant for modern audiences.
In other words, everyone wants to achieve the American Dream, but no one wants to see anyone else achieve it. Yet like the many fantasies other characters on this list have sought, this one too is corrupted by drug use, violence and illegal activity.
The first of them being Oscar Micheaux, who made films regardless of his difficulties with the industry. Lauren Velez manages to portray a character equipped with trouble yet with a spark of comedic relief.
Tupac portrays this character very well, confused, living in a society where opportunities lie scarce and only the fittest survive. Quincy struggles with an untrustworthy father and Monica does not get enough support from her mother who sees her as a “tomboy”. It includes brutal beatings and graphic bloody shootings often stylized with slow motion techniques and impressive camera maneuvering. There are many contenders, including Hotel Rwanda, for example, follows the struggle of Tutsi refugees during the conflict with the Hutu militia.
Arts-stew is about having fun, just a mixture of everything and anything I can come up with, a stew if you will. For both Kane and Tony, the mirage of a fanciful life as promised by the American Dream is, in the end, just that: a mirage.
He wanted a utopian fantasy of freedom, but instead ended up with nothing more than a bad LSD trip and a pair of hookers for company. For instance, as he gave his sermon, he would not hesitate to secretly drink from a flask hidden under the pulpit.
It also won Best Adapted Screenplay and was nominated in four other categories including best picture. Even if she did not manage to gain acceptance from everyone at her household, at the midst of being let down, she still finds freedom. Jamie Foxx earned a Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Ray Charles in the 2004 film Ray, while Mo'Nique won the Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for playing an abusive mother in 2009's Precious.Many of the best African American movies of the 2000s are comedies. These character details are what made Oscar Micheaux such a great director, allowing a blazing performance by Paul Robeson. He has his eyes on winning a DJ contest, but peer pressure and the juice tempt him to the other side of the spectrum. Barbershop, Down to Earth, and How High all appear on this list of '00s African American movies. In 2009, Disney even introduced its first African American princess in the film The Princess and the Frog.Vote up your favorites and downvote the ones that won't withstand the test of time.
The votes change the list order, so it's up to you to help decide the the greatest back movie of the 2000s Add any movie we may have missed and rerank the whole list to share your own version!



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