Author Topic: The Butler  (Read 7907 times)

Offline Magic Wand

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The Butler
« on: August 16, 2013, 08:08:55 pm »
WOW!

It was so much better than I expected.
Such a dignified look at a neglected piece of American History.

Poignant and powerful.

Even Oprah didn't get on my nerves this time!

Go see it!  You will not be disappointed!
"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." --Aristotle, Greek philosopher

Доверяй, но проверяй

Offline The Griot

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2013, 05:20:56 am »
Going to see it this coming weekend.
"Happiness is dancing when the drumming is good."

Offline The Griot

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2013, 12:16:07 pm »
Saw it yesterday. Loved it. I think it's all about perspective. If you're a black person from the South and you're between the ages of 50 to 90 This movie is about your life. I saw aunts, uncles, cousins and friends in this movie. I saw what I experienced growing up and I saw the stories my parents told me about things I was too young to experience. I was the protection my parents cloaked me with so I wouldn't see the harsh side of living in the South during this time. This is just my opinion, but I think a lot of the folks that don't like this film or who are condemning it without viewing it are those that have no connection to it. There are two types of heroes; those that actively fight against their conditions and those who endure. This movie was about both.
"Happiness is dancing when the drumming is good."

Offline Metro

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2013, 10:36:13 am »

I still think the critique of the Black Power Movement was rushed/oversimplified, but the larger gain of how the son redeems the father is powerful.  Wish there was more substantial engagement in the politics among black women during that era, especially older women.

Clever casting of the Presidents plus the beauty of Yaya Alafia and Minka Kelly did not attract the younger male viewers the producers intended, though.

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Offline The Griot

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2013, 09:45:04 am »
Yaya was rocking that 'fro. I have a soft spot for a sister with a big 'fro.  :D
"Happiness is dancing when the drumming is good."

Offline Battle

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2013, 01:57:40 pm »
Yaya was rocking that 'fro. I have a soft spot for a sister with a big 'fro.  :D




Even Oprah8)

Offline KIP LEWIS

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2013, 03:00:48 pm »
Read an article that I found interesting.  The story is based upon a real man, but rather than tell his story they changed a lot.  For example,  the son was a Vietnam vet who never joined a protest movement.

Wonder why base a story on a real man, but then change his story?

Offline Emperorjones

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2013, 01:37:56 am »
^
Those who watched the film could provide a better answer. But from what I've read about the film, some speculated that Lee Daniels wanted to use the story more to tell the story of black history/progress from the 20th century to the election of President Obama. So his Butler was as much a symbol as he was a character. Some critiques have likened it to Forrest Gump, where Forrest winds up taking part of being present at some many historical events.

Offline Metro

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2013, 08:57:08 am »

On documentary, biography, and historical fiction ...

LDTB wasn't meant to be a literal presentation of Eugene Allen's life.  The project wanted to explore the dynamics of family and political activism - the tensions between domestic service under Jim Crow and youth organizations that challenged it.

In many ways, it is better to compare it to the Shawshank Redemption.  Instead of Dufrane saving Red, LDTB's son rescues his father.
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Offline FLEX HECTIC

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2013, 11:37:30 am »
So there were no elaborate car chases or extreme martial arts action scenes?

Offline supreme illuminati

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2013, 10:49:47 am »
One of my close friends...a movie maker, a HEF vet...absolutely positively smashed this movie in his review of it. He saw it, and was repulsed beyond words. I haven't seen it, but rarely has he...[ our very own voodoochild, the genius behind

CV NATION


https://www.youtube.com/user/CVNATIONSERIES


that has its own thread on HEF ]...espoused a perspective that I have been diametrically opposed to.

Right away, that whole..."lemme rape the Mariah Carey wife in front of her hubby ,while hubby stops the son from jumping into action to save his mother, then turn around and shoot the daddy dead in front of his son, and let's have the older lady scoop up the boy and teach him how to be a wonderful House Nigger, then shuffle him along to learn House Nigger Jedi Skills from the older male House Nigger..." that line of storytelling displeased me right away. Historically accurate or not.

I don't see heroism in gritting your teeth and silently biting back screams of rage and unfettered actions of self defense while repeatedly being raped mentally and physically and degraded and humiliated every whichaway. It's at best a marvel of endurance and likely massive internal scarring from the subsequent emotional and mental mutilation that such treatment inflicts. Which perforce makes us bulid giant interior self defense and coping mechanisms just to endure our existence as Black people in the USA. But heroism? I honestly, honestly,  don't see it.

Actually, this line of storytelling [ and again, I haven't even seen the movie yet so I reserve final judgement for after I've seen it and reflected upon it on my own], but just that line of storytelling...evoked a response in me that was reminiscent of the first time I saw ROOTS. I remember, as a child, that I had no idea that I was capable of feeling such rage. I didnt' even know that the kind of blazing rage that I was feeling was even possible at all for any living thing period, much less a little kid like me. I couldn't watch all of ROOTS the first time it came out.

I wasn't touched by rage when I heard the particulars of some aspects of this movie, but I knew right away that I needed to not be giving my money to anyone who was willing to present such controversial material and more than likely lacked the deft touch and nuance and clear resolution that such a cinematic effort would require in order to deliver a clear message to the moviegoer and provide a satisfying experience to all the moviegoers watching this film.

So there were no elaborate car chases or extreme martial arts action scenes?

We really needed a Django in this film, from what I gather from my friends.

What's more? This time period could have been used to showcase the African and African-American martial arts that included the precursors to Jailhouse Rock, the African martial art hybrid that became known in Brazil as Capoeira but which has its own expressions throughout the Western Hemisphere, not just in Brazil . Martinique, Belize, Cuba, Haiti, all the islands, and yes the southern USA too. nd the African American style of boxing and gunslinging was incorporated into it. There's history there.
WOW!

It was so much better than I expected.
Such a dignified look at a neglected piece of American History.

Poignant and powerful.

Even Oprah didn't get on my nerves this time!

Go see it!  You will not be disappointed!


Please tell me what is so Wow-worthy about this movie, Wand. I really wish to know. No sarcasm or disrespect intended. I'm genuinely asking.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2013, 10:53:32 am by supreme illuminati »
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Offline supreme illuminati

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2013, 11:12:06 am »
Saw it yesterday. Loved it. I think it's all about perspective. If you're a black person from the South and you're between the ages of 50 to 90 This movie is about your life. I saw aunts, uncles, cousins and friends in this movie. I saw what I experienced growing up and I saw the stories my parents told me about things I was too young to experience. I was the protection my parents cloaked me with so I wouldn't see the harsh side of living in the South during this time. This is just my opinion, but I think a lot of the folks that don't like this film or who are condemning it without viewing it are those that have no connection to it. There are two types of heroes; those that actively fight against their conditions and those who endure. This movie was about both.

I'm not in the age range of the people from the South that you mentioned. And my family was distinguished by our unique refusal to countenance regular slights and disrespect in the South. My 3 times grandfather was laughingly informed by 4 drunk White men that they raped and skinned his wife alive. His response was to ask them to take him to her body so he could bury her. They led him to a remote area of the backwoods to her body. My 3 times great grandfather buried her...and shot dead 3 of the White men, dispatched in hand to hand combat the 4th. Then he left to Oklahoma, and that's how my father's family line got to Oklahoma and later to California.

My grandmother...at age 12...stood down 6 Klansmen by herself--unarmed---when they came to her farm looking for her older [ female ] cousin who refused to let a White woman slap her with impunity for some imagined slight that she...my grandmother's female cousin...was wholly innocent of. My grandmother's older cousin decked the White woman and two of her White female friends for spitting on and slapping her.

Such behavior has been typical of the men and women in my family for centuries, and remains so to this very day.

So no. Allowing one's wife to be raped in front of you, holding back one's son from protecting his mother, or anything like that does not speak at all to anyone in my bloodline. I see no heroism in it. I see near superhuman endurance of torture, massive mental and emotional scarring, degradation, humiliation, and Job-like patience.

But no heroism.

I see heroism in my 3 times great grandfather, my grandmother, my father and uncles...Django, TChalla...and maybe the son of The Butler.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2013, 11:17:47 am by supreme illuminati »
I AM THAT WHICH GODS,DEMONS,IMMORTALS AND ANGELS FEAR.I AM THAT WHICH PERFECTION ITSELF ASPIRES TO BE
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Offline Vic Vega

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2013, 01:30:59 pm »
Read an article that I found interesting.  The story is based upon a real man, but rather than tell his story they changed a lot.  For example,  the son was a Vietnam vet who never joined a protest movement.

Wonder why base a story on a real man, but then change his story?

When has Hollywood NOT done that?

Real life has boring parts and doesn't always have thematic resonance.

Movies sort of need theme and shouldn't be knowingly boring.

Pain and Gain was an allgedly true story about a crime gone wrong but the movie made the chracters dumber and more sympathetic and the Rock's character never existed at all (he was an combination of two other real life characters).

Even the recent Lincoln movie took liberties for the sake of drama(even tho by Hollywood standards they were very accurate).

So artistic license is nearly always used.

The writers must have wanted a dramatic counterpoint to the Butler's stance so they turned his son into a militant.

That is just more interesting storywise than him just being some guy that got drafted, served and went home.

Offline Emperorjones

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2013, 02:34:19 pm »
Supreme,

I think the heroism you are deriding is a heroism reserved for black and sometimes other non-white peoples. White males get Braveheart, Spartacus, and 300, plus a billion action movies. I couldn't imagine them making a movie about a servant in King Edward's house who quietly suffered and through that suffering somehow touched the old king's heart, or that we get a movie about a Roman slave who chastises their own child for admiring Spartacus, or a movie about the helots of those freedom loving Spartans from 300. 

I'm not saying a film like The Butler shouldn't be made. But it might be easier to swallow we had a variety of films, about a variety of experiences.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2013, 02:06:34 pm by Emperorjones »

Offline Metro

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Re: The Butler
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2013, 05:05:26 pm »
Dr. Walter Greason
School of Education
The Honors School
Monmouth University
(twitter) @worldprofessor