Alright, the movie was fine.
I just hate that there
is was a time when people like Dorothy Dandridge had the Hollywood experience she had. It makes me so sad.
Anyhoo, the pic… Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (TV 1999)...
I always kinda got the impression –- and I have no doubt made this up in my mind -– that Halle Berry somehow identified with the tragic Dorothy Dandridge. I think Berry was close to this role. She actually executive produced the pic. Berry and Dandridge do share certain things in common:
- their beauty - (they actually do resemble one another and have similar coloring)
- their plight – lack of good, respectable roles
- their problem – their beauty
- tragic – there’s something tragic about them both
I could be making a mountain out of a molehill. Could be that Berry recognized their physical resemblance and wanted to tell Dandridge’s story and decided to do a pic about it and nothing more.
As I watched this film, the 11th movie of this series, I have really begun to see Halle Berry the actress… who she is… what she does… how she has found success… blah blah blah –- things I will delve into further in the closing summary… when I prepare it… in 2012 (just kidding’ y'all).
Anyhoo, enough rambling. I especially liked Halle Berry in this role. She deserved the accolades. Berry won a Golden Globe Award, a SAG award and an Emmy award for her portrayal of Dorothy Dandridge. She was very, very good in the pic. She played the role convincingly. One of the things I liked about the film was the casting of Berry. It was a sensible casting choice, at least from a physical standpoint.
It would have been almost foolish for some other person to play Dandridge. I always appreciate when SOMEONE (director, writer, producer, actor, whoever) takes care to ensure the actor charged with playing the role of a real life person, actually resembles the real life individual. When this physical resemblance is absent, it just never works for me. Ever. The distraction of the ongoing analysis of the physical dissimilarity detracts from enjoyment of the film. When they miscast in this way, it diminishes the credibility of the film, in my view.
When I was watching Berry, I thought I was watching Dandridge. Berry was good in it -– everything from voice to physical movement. It was a solid, splendid performance. I enjoyed it.
I think there were two moments in the movie when I realized I was indeed watching Halle Berry -- one was during an emotional scene. It seemed as if I saw her play that scene the same way in a previous pic. But this is negligible.
But when I saw that naked caramel ass propped up as Dandridge lay dead on the floor, I was at once reminded that I was indeed watching Halle Berry… do what she does. It didn’t matter for that split second that the scene may have been credible… that it may have been exactly how Dorothy Dandridge appeared when she was found dead. That didn’t matter. The pattern did. It is unfortunate.
But these things are insignificant and none of them overshadowed a magnificent performance by Berry in the role.
Berry did a lot of things well in this film -- appropriate emotional expressions of sadness, despair, anger, indecisiveness. There were many good showings in some of her emotional scenes. I thought they were well done:
- When she received her child’s diagnosis
- When Harold Nicolas is off to Paris
- While she was speaking on the phone (really good, I thought)
- When she has to leave her child; and goes on with her mother, to further her career
- When she was singing in the club
Halle Berry understood this character and committed to her. It was one of Berry’s best performances –- if not her best, I do believe.
[Speaking of executive producing –- I want to give Halle Berry a shout out for her hand in executive producing Introducing Dorothy Dandridge and Lackawanna Blues, as well; which, by the way, was a fine, exemplary production -- a great piece of entertainment. Berry could be sitting around counting her stacks, but at least she is trying put her dough into decent film projects and I applaud and commend… and THANK Halle Berry for that.]