Shadow And Act on Facebook

Recent Comments

Trailer for “Lord, All Men Can’t Be Dogs” (You just know what’s coming don’t you?)

Our main mission on Shadow and Act is to profile black cinema in all its forms, which means even a taped stage play scheduled to be released on DVD in June, must be bought to our readers’ attention. No need to say anymore, except that this trailer pretty much explains itself. You’ve seen it before with probably the same cast (with a few changes here and there).

But somebody’s got to be watching them or why else do they keep putting them out?

26 comments to Trailer for “Lord, All Men Can’t Be Dogs” (You just know what’s coming don’t you?)

  • artbizzy

    Aww, Daaaamn…lol.

  • BluTopaz

    What kind of world are we in where Johnny Gill is reduced to this, and not doing baby making music?

  • I blame Tyler Perry, aka The Prime Minister of Coonistan.

    • JMac

      Oh come on. TP didn’t start this trend, he just capitalized on it. Wasn’t Your Arms Too Short to Box with God the precursor to the crappy black gospel plays?

      I forgot their names but there was a pair of brothers who were mass producing these plays every few months in the 80s/early 90s. They were even featured on a news program (60 mintues, 20/20, Dateline?) at the peak of their success- dodging the same attacks TP is up against now.

      Darn, can’t remember their names but I remember their shows coming to my hometown all the time. Always had some has-been actor or singer in the title role. Can’t fault Perry for taking it to the next level considering all the money at stake. Just would like a little more BALANCE in what hits the mainstream.

  • Erica

    I think some people fail to realize that there are real people that live, act, and think like these characters. I know them personally! Instead of complaining about these types of Blacks being represented we need to create things that represent Blacks in a different light. Because complaining is not going to do a thing. I see so many Black screenwriters on twitter dedicate more twits to dissing Tyler Perry than to uplifting other Black screenwriters, that they like.

    If you don’t like something do your best to change it.

  • Sergio

    “I think some people fail to realize that there are real people that live, act, and think like these characters. I know them personally”

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE I beg you tell me where they are so I can avoid them!

    • Erica

      Look in any hood in the South. It’s sobering but it’s the truth. I try to avoid them to. But it’s kind of hard to avoid family. :( I use to be so ashamed and embarrassed, but I realized their actions aren’t a reflection on me. I know who I am.

  • Andre Morton

    I find the disconnect of black “intellectual/creative” thought from popular black entertainment fascinating. Why is it that we have a hard time accepting that our community is diverse enough for Madea and Medicine for Melancholy? Why do we continually debase ourselves by applying the words of oppression to artistic expression we dislike.

    To suggest that “Tyler Perry is the PM of Coonistan” you must also suggest that those who enjoy his work are Coons. I challenge any member of the Tyler Perry bashing crowd to take that conviction to the front doors of The Restoration Plaza Theater in Bed Sty and tell those folks laying out hard cash that they are supporting minstrel shows. (Please let me know when you go because I want to capture it for youtube posterity.)

    First the black theater circuit predates Tyler Perry, he rose to prominence because of it’s existence. He tailored his work for an audience who enjoys this type of fare, and became rich giving the people what they want. Now people want all kinds of things that may be good or bad for them but who are we to judge? We can only choose for ourselves where we will plunk down our hard earned dollars on entertainments to relieve the stress of maintaining home and hearth. Let the next person do as they like. If Auntie and Uncle want to watch a man in fat suit drag to have a laugh so be it.

    Now while we debate the intellectual, artistic, and social merits or lack thereof in the work, we can do so without debasing ourselves with the Minstrel BS.

    A more interesting question for me than why does TP. or Ice Cube, or etc continue to churn out dross ad infinitum, is why do you cringe when you see it? What is it that triggers a sense of shame. revulsion, and rage when these products arrive on the market? Why do you feel debased to the point of resorting to the use of the words of coon and minstrel? There are infinitely more destructive messages being churned out popular music than on stage or in cinema, and where is the outrage?

    • ***STANDING AND APPLAUDING***

      “To suggest that “Tyler Perry is the PM of Coonistan” you must also suggest that those who enjoy his work are Coons”

      EXACTLY!

      re: Any member of the Tyler Perry bashing crowd.

      I wonder how they would classify themselves? Uuuuum, I’m wondering what’s in their wallets and what city/neighbor they live in?

      Surely it can’t be anywhere in America because as Erica said, “I think some people fail to realize that there are real people that live, act, and think like these characters”

      And, I was first introduced to Tyler Perry’s products by a well respected citizen (professor). So I am wondering what world the naysayers live in? More importantly, who do they think they are?

    • Is our community really diverse enough for “Medicine For Melancholy”?
      The problem is… NO Black people I know (either in real life, or on-line) have seen “Medicine For Melancholy”. Nor are they interested in doing so.
      Most Blacks that praise Tyler Perry wouldn’t even watch a film like that. They call it “too artsy”/ or “trying to please White people”.

      Where’s the unified support when unorthodoxed representations of Blacks are trying to break the mold?
      Black folks who are NOT Christian, who don’t listen to R&B music, who don’t subscribe to conventional notions of “Blackness” through cultural conformity.
      Where’s all the unity for people like them?

      But, have dissenting opinions about a rich mainstream celebrity, and people start getting all personal.
      Providing criticism towards Tyler Perry doesn’t make a person a “hater”.
      Mr. Perry is NOT above criticism. I don’t care how much money he has.
      Money is not enough to make me kiss someone’s ass.
      There is no “hate” for him. Speaking for myself, I just have criticism in regards to his smug perspective.
      Now-a-days, if you’re Black (and trying to make films), people always have to mention Tyler Perry like as if he’s the ONLY Black director out there.
      He’s not even that good, let alone being heralded as a “model”.

      Everytime Black people critique a Black celeb, we get branded as being a “hater”.
      Thats a very dismissive, and counter-productive assessment.

      • Shaquan, if you would qualify your “criticism”, I believe you would remove yourself (by default) from any haters list. Specifically, what is it about Tyler Perry’s products that you don’t like (list them). The following are not going to cut it.

        “a rich mainstream celebrity”

        “his smug perspective”

        “He’s not even that good”

        “Black folks who are NOT Christian, who don’t listen to R&B music, who don’t subscribe to conventional notions of “Blackness” through cultural conformity”

        “Everytime Black people critique a Black celeb, we get branded as being a “hater””

        Shaquan, I’ve yet to see your “critique” of any of Tyler’s films. You seem to have contempt for the man and those that enjoy his films, but are we talking about the man or his films?

        • How I qualify my criticism of Tyler Perry’s movies probably would be fruitless for you. There’s nothing I can add that will do anything for you (because you like his films, judging by your un-waivering support). And that is what it is. You like what you like.

          I don’t know TP personally, and I don’t think anybody here does either.

          But, my dislike for his movies involves:
          -His biased, dogmatic stance on spirituality concerning the Black community. He assumes that all Blacks are Christian, and if we’re not, then we need “saving”.
          -His constant demonization of Black men (who all just happen to be dark-skinned).
          -The humor in his dialogue is always out-dated, and not really evident of a mentality beyond the 6 grade level.
          -The melodramatic themes are presented in such an overt way, that it seems as if he doesn’t respect his audiences’ intelligence. I’m surprised so many women in our generation don’t feel condescended by all of that.
          -His writing exudes (either) laziness or just plain neglect of strong craftsmanship. The fact that all of his stories are predictable is really just a given. I don’t see a pay-off. He doesn’t contribute anything NEW to the art of filmmaking. He just recycles tired old cliches (only because Black folks have always been “familiar” with it). Thats nonsensical reasoning.

          And the whole “airing dirty laundry” thing gets a pause. There is nothing new (in mainstream Hollywood) about revealing negative qualities that Black men may have. Black men have been accused of everything from drug-selling to raping White women (courtesy of “Birth of a Nation”).
          So, whoop-dee doo. More of US feel that TP is doing justice by talking about the “bad things that Black men do”.

          If he really wanted to be innovative, he’d “air the dirty laundry” of what occures BEHIND the scenes, behind the united fronts that divert our attention, beneath the surface into our human condition & social paradigm.
          Just merely playing it safe by spoon-feeding Black folks a bunch of recycled material that they’ve already been accustomed to digesting is just a cosmetic handling of deeper-rooted issues that he (either) can’t or don’t want to properly address.

          • “because you like his films”

            That’s far removed from the truth. You’ve been around for a minute, so I don’t beleive you’ve ever heard me say that. Look deeply at what I am really supporting (what am I defending?).

            I am going to cut this short because we’ve reached a crossroad.

            You said: “I don’t see a pay-off”

  • artbizzy

    Man, this still making me chuckle. Church folks love this stuff. That title TRULY sucks, though. I mean I see it’s entertainment value for people in the church struggling with these issues through that black churchy lens but, come on…what’s Vivica doing? And Johnny Gill…my, my, my! But hey, whatcha gon’ do but dress up mama, aunty and granny and take them out for a good time. This is a stress reliever. I mean, I know family members who would love this because it speaks to them because they are in the church. So it’s entertaining, which is fine I think. Most people are so used to being entertained. Looking beneath the surface of things disturbs them. Imagine if a piece like this went into why there’s a black church in the first place and why black men are frequently stereotyped as dogs and how many embrace this image and many black women buy into this about black men as well. These pieces want to handle this stuff prayerfully without looking at the historical/ political side of things. But ain’t nothing wrong with just saying eff it and laughing at our dumb asses.
    This is gonna keep me chuckling, though. Some one should do an arty version of these types of plays/films so that they could make 0 dollars on it. Or a few dollars at least. Maybe they could use a real dog and give it a black man’s name. Or make the devil black instead of red. Or make the devil white. Like white devil. yeah.

    • BluTopaz

      If anyone did the artsy version like you noted, some may take it seriously and protest. Years ago I interned for this Black artist who was rather loopy, but brilliant and funny. He wanted to produce what he called a performance piece of Black people riding a chartered tour bus through the upper East side in NYC, while eating chicken wings,watermelon, carrying on and quoting Shakespeare. All on loudspeaker. After we finished laughing at his pitch we thought about how to put it together–he had other aspects to it I won’t go into but there were some high falutin’ artsy aspects to it as well that included archival images with text blown up to poster size. It’s probably been done, but the fear was that some of his financial contributors (a few very conservative Black people on several directors boards) would not see it as satire and the idea was scrapped.

  • JasonJee

    Now THIS is what Tyler Perry inspired. I’m not mad at people who like it I can even watch when it’s a bit less over the top and they actually try to make a cogent script.

    • トヴィタ

      Nothing new here. Seems like there were even more of these sorts of plays when I was growing up. The ads were pretty prevalent on TV. And the shows were ALWAYS playing at the beacon theater(NY). No small feat nowadays. Even as a kid I thought these plays were ridiculous, but I would never go so far as to call them “coon fests”. This is harmless entertainment, not a blight against humanity.

  • Listen, I’ve said this before, personally I do not think Tyler Perry is a great director. But that opinion is not based on the subject matter in his films. Why should it? And now we have some folks attacking the man’s character because some of his films include abused women and whorish men. Lordy lordy, we don’t want that to get out. The general public can’t handle that new (news). What will they think of us now?

    Wait a minute, didn’t the same freaks come out at night when “Precious” landed. Didn’t I hear the same black zombies and “upper crust” – cry foul? Sure I did. I am still alive.

    I mean, I watched the movies “Precious” and “Ray” and For Colored Girls, and Madea’s family reunion – and – I am still here. That must make me a special kind of survivor – huh? I don’t feel compelled to shoot heroin, dress in drag or rape my daughter, so I must be special. My white neighbors still wave at me as they pass by. I don’t know what they are saying in their homes, nor do I care.

    A Precious lived down the street from me. The rumors and whispers surrounding the father of her children have stood the test of time. We called her father, Icewater.

    The other day I passed by the welfare office. I spotted several “Mo`niques” exchanging Newport cigarettes. I knew some of them – I waved and kept driving.

    I know several women that have been brutalized by the hands of men. In fact, last year, one was murdered by the hands of her lover. And check this, ol’boy had done it before. After doing a ten year bit, he got out and did it again. Now he’s doing life.

    I’ve coached teenage thugs. I know their mothers and fathers. However, I am still alive. I must live on the right side of the tracks – in a cave.

    Precious, “Ray”, Big Momma’s House, “For Colored Girls” and “Lord, All Men Can’t Be Dogs” are movies. Can we move forward?

    And, it’s no secret that Ray Charles was a heroin addict and womenizer. I wonder how many people bought a trey bag after watching that movie?

    I wonder what the white man thinks about that. Well, no I don’t. Again, I could care less about their views of us. I mean, why should I? They will continue to do what they’ve always done. That is, let us hang ourselves, while they sit back – and wait – to pickup the trash.

    • BluTopaz

      No disrespect Carey, can’t speak for anyone else but I don’t look down on the types of people you noted nor am I worried about what White people think. My family (who watches Perry) laughed at me recently because they ‘made me’ watch 2 Madea flicks with them. I cracked up at Madea’s foolishness, and I also laughed at the 70′s sitcom set lighting that Sergio called it once, the novella melodrama, and the countdowns to when someone would divulge the shock that they were abuse survivors. My co-workers have invited me to the types of plays featured in this post and I tell them naw i ain’t going to see mama done burned the grits again and we all laugh and keep it moving. I don’t look down on them, as I hope they don’t side eye me. But to your point Perry’s critics are often content creators themselves- production tech people, screenwriters, editing, etc. who are amazed that someone with so little training in anything has found his audience and become a zillionaire. And Black people are like everyone else-we don’t all like the same things and don’t have to. I have heard some Indian colleagues say they don’t watch Bollywood movies, and hate that they represent Indian cinema. My hoity toity sister i mentioned in that other thread–she LOVES Madea movies and PLAYS, and she has all the zeroes in her bank account to qualify her as real bourgie. I’m nowhere near her tax bracket, it’s just that I have different tastes in entertainment, that’s all (shrug)

  • My Blu Topaz, you know I feel you.

    like our other conversation, you did a great job of qualifying your “opinions” as they relate to Tyler Perry’s productions.

    It would be a perfect world if we all shared great writing skills like yours. Really, I’m not being facetious or sarcastic. Hey, I know “MY” writing leaves much to be desired (it sucks, big time, at times), and frequently my words are lost in the fire, leaving some scratching their heads and possibly believing I am speaking directly to them.

    Maybe I should start all my comments with “If this shoe fits….

  • I watched a couple of these plays on BET and they are not bad. And I’m not even a Christian. Basically they are like black soap operas with singing breaks, instead of commercial breaks. And I agree with other posters, who have pointed out that the Chittlin’ circuit of theater production is not new. Growing up, I remember the radio commercial for “Mama I Wanna Sing.” Man, I wanted to see that play so bad, CTFU.

  • I remember seeing “You’re Arms Are Too Short to Box with God”in the 70′s. This genre is old, but popular. My mother and aunt go to see all of these types of plays with their seniors group. They’re of the age when they can remember being excited to see black folks on TV. No matter how bad it is, they feel they need to support black folks. I try to preach “quality not quantity” to them, but they just want to get out of the house and see some black people. As long as there isn’t a lot of cussing and the music isn’t too loud, they’re happy. When they ask me to come along, I find some excuse. You’d think they’d get the hint!

  • Isn’t this the sequel to “Oh lawd, Momma done burnt up the Chicken”?

    We’ve beaten the “relationship” dramas TO DEATH.
    We haven’t gotten any better as a people because of it.
    You got men like Steve Harvey & Tyler Perry telling Black women that if a man isn’t Christian, then he’s no good.

    That dead horse must be a bloody-pulp by now.

  • I hope this project does well.