Insight News

Feb 09th

Anticipating Takers

Anticipating TakersThe moment audiences laid eyes on the trailer last year for Takers, a Will Packer-produced film, we knew “urgency” would be the new diet, and “anticipation” would have to be the only ease for the palette.

For instant fans of the flick, it’s incredibly hard to have patience, especially if pressing the breaks, means waiting on the latest genius endeavor from one of the industry's most talented producers who also brought us features such as Stomp The Yard and This Christmas.

But finally, now that the wait is over and August 27 marks a new day and a new era in black entertainment, as we’re introduced to one of the most anticipated films of the summer.

Idris Elba, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Hayden Christiansen, Paul Walker, Chris Brown, Matt Dillon, Michael Ealy… dare I go on?

Guthrie production seeks Black community response

Guthrie production seeks Black community responseIt is a tragic storyline: white women falsely accusing Black men of rape. Historic records document actual circumstances spanning generations, from the days of frequent lynch mobs to present day mass media. However, the case of The Scottsboro Boys gained national attention and sparked the Civil Rights Movement. It was March, 1931, in Scottsboro, AL when nine African American youths were engaged in a fight with white youths on a freight train. The African American males were pulled off the train, and local authorities persuaded two white females riding the train to claim the men raped them. As word spread with the false accusations, streets filled with an angry lynch mob of local residents, only appeased by the promise of a quick trial, conviction to imprisonment and execution. For nearly fifty years the nine boys lives would never be the same as they were convicted and confined behind prison bars, and confined by the prison of injustice mentally, spiritually, emotionally, and psychologically.

Bouncing with Bow Wow

Bouncing with Bow WowBow Wow - The “Lottery Ticket” Interview

Born Shad Gregory Moss in Columbus, OH, on March 9, 1987, Bow Wow was a precocious kid who started rhyming as a toddler, and first appeared on stage at the age of five. His showbiz career was launched just a year later when he made the most of an opportunity to open for Snoop Dogg on the Chronic Tour.

At 13, Bow Wow released his first solo CD, “Beware of Dog,” which sold over 3 million copies. A hit single from that debut album, “Bounce with Me,” reached #1 on both the Rap and R&B charts. That achievement earned him recognition in the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest solo rapper to hit #1. He now has a half-dozen CDs to his name, with a new one in the works.

New documentary explores long term disaster recovery in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina

 New documentary explores long term disaster recovery in New Orleans after Hurricane KatrinaFilm narrated by actress Khandi Alexander

The aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was felt around the nation. Images of a flooded New Orleans and decimated coastal communities overwhelmed our televisions and newspapers, and they still often appear. The death and destruction became the focal point of natural tragedy, and are still what most remember. A new documentary aims to change that.

“Coming Home: Hurricane Katrina 5 Years Later,” directed by David Barnhart, focuses on one of Katrina’s more intriguing human phenomena. Five years after the storm, many residents and New Orleans natives are still trying to make it back home. For many, this was made possible not by government grants or the natural retreat of the waters, but by volunteers. “Coming Home,” narrated by actress Khandi Alexander of HBO’s Treme, delves into the relationships that have formed between these volunteers and the grateful residents they’ve helped.

Laughs Galore as Lotto-Winner Tries to Keep Low Profile in the ‘Hood

Laughs Galore as Lotto-Winner Tries to Keep Low Profile in the ‘Hood                             Lottery Ticket

Kevin Carson (Bow Wow) wasn’t even thinking about buying a lottery ticket that fateful Friday the jackpot had reached $370 million, even though folks on the long line were already talking about how they planned to spend the money on everything from a Versace suit to a mail order bride. After all, he considered Lotto a diabolical scheme designed “to keep poor people poor by selling them false dreams.”

But then a couple of events transpire which you might call divine intervention. First, his grandmother (Loretta Devine) asks him to play the numbers that had come to her when Jesus appeared to her in a dream. Then, he’s fired on the spot when recently-paroled Lorenzo (Gbenga Akinnagbe) raises a ruckus at Foot Locker under the mistaken belief that Kevin was the snitch who put him behind bars.

Unexpectedly unemployed, Kevin impulsively decides to buy himself a lottery ticket, too, when he stops at the local bodega to get his grandma’s. And that evening he gets the shock of his life while watching the drawing on TV when all of his numbers pop up one after the other.

Revenge is a Dish Best Served with Pork

Revenge is a Dish Best Served with PorkLa Soga

Son of a butcher Luisito (Manny Perez) was orphaned at the age of ten when his doting dad (Miguel Angel Martinez) was senselessly slain by a thug employed by a Dominican drug cartel. Although the grieving lad grew up to follow in his father’s footsteps, he could never fully recover from the murder until he had kept a promise to himself to exact a measure of retribution from the cowardly perpetrator.

This mental state made it easy for the head of the secret police (Juan Fernandez) to recruit Luisito for his own purposes. So, after being trained by General Colon, as an adult he begins moonlighting as a deadly assassin who tracks down dealers deliberately deported back to the Dominican Republic by the FBI after being caught plying their trade on the streets of New York. The idea is that the dregs of society might simply be executed vigilante-style and thereby save the taxpayers the expense of a trial and imprisonment.

Stallone Assembles Cast of Fight Icons for Mother of All Buddy Flicks

Stallone Assembles Cast of Fight Icons for Mother of All Buddy Flicks The Expendables

As kids, my friends and I periodically engaged in debates about which of our favorite comic book superheroes was the mightiest. Could Batman beat Superman? Who would prevail in a battle between Spiderman and Wolverine? Or between Flash and the Hulk? And how would a clash of the Fantastic Four and the X-Men turn out? The possible permutations were endless, but the winners were always a matter of pure speculation, since no issue was ever published portraying all of these characters.

The Expendables is the closest cinema has come to staging such a fantasy showdown, though featuring famous Hollywood icons instead of beloved comic book characters. To his credit, writer/director Sylvester Stallone somehow signed a cast containing many of the greatest legends of the action genre. Consequently, this high-impact adventure is worth the investment just to see that assemblage of matinee idols sharing the same screen.
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