Dear Pennies & Pens,
Now it’s time to talk about my favorite movies. I of course included The Sound of Music, in fact, “Pen’s Favorite Things” was inspired by the Julia Andrews song from the film. Thinking of things that make you happy really does make you happy. It’s about putting positive energy into the world so that you can revel in it. I’m seriously making positive thinking a way of life. Moving right along, let me give a quick shout out to each film and then tell you why I love it.
Sister Act 2: Made in the early 90s, this movie stars Whoopi Goldberg and Lauryn Hill. Need I say more?! I mean seriously the music, the fashion, the comedy, the writing, the acting, everything about this film just works. It never gets old. Its a classic. Its iconic. It will never be duplicated no matter how hard anyone tries. I don’t care if it’s won awards, Sister Act 2 is literally a film you can watch over and over and it be dope each time.
A Low Down Dirty Shame: Shame! Oh Shame, what would 90s action-comedies have been without you?! Keenan Ivory Wayans takes the lead in this flick about a down on his luck private investigator looking for revenge. It also stars Jada Pinket Smith and Sallie Richardson who looks stunning throughout the movie. She looked so fabulous that in every scene music plays when she enters the room. And who could forget Wayman who has sadly died of AIDS but keep you laughing throughout the movie?! MUST SEE TV.
Coming to America: Eddie Murphy in his prime combined with Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones (“This is beautiful, what is it velvet?), really is just another level when it comes to Black comedy films. I mean come on, Eddie plays an African prince who comes to Queens, NY to find his “Queen to be” and goes through a series of hilarious situations with his sidekick Simmy. Again the fashion, the comedy, the acting, is EVERYTHING. Please buy this if you don’t have it already.
Harlem Nights: Another Eddie Murphy flick. This time he came together with the iconic comedians Richard Pryor, Red Fox, Della Reese as well as Arsenio Hall who makes a cameo appearance. Harlem Nights is another amazing mixture of comedy, action, fashion, and great acting. And before I forget let me mention Ms. Jasmine Guy for being so classy, sexy, and just fabulous in this movie.
Fade 2 Black: Hello?! It’s Jay! I mean come on you’re reading de la Pen “All Pen Everything”…Jay-Z is inspiration for my life and my work. And in this film Jay was chronicling his “retirement” and his “last” concert. The DVD features footage of Jay making The Black Album as well as performances from his Fade 2 Black concert which includes Missy Elliot, Memphis Bleek, Foxy Brown, Beyonce`, and many more. I watch this DVD all time because it was just a historic moment for Hip-hop.
B’Day: Who else would release a DVD of videos that would still be watched years later?! Hmmm…let me think…BEYONCE`. I mean she is the Queen B. So uh…yeah. No seriously, throughout this DVD, Bey entertains you with her dancing, singing, and just all around fabulousity. She went from wearing her Freakum Dress to showing you her Flaws and All to doing a damn good Jay-Z impersonation in Upgrade You. So #andthereitis
Burlesque: Ah yes, Burlesque. Let me show you how you Burlesque. This film is so underrated, it’s not even funny. With Cher and Christina Aguilera playing the leads, you think it would’ve had more hype but in this fast paced online world, it got lost in the sauce. But make no mistake this film is amazing! Don’t get me wrong the plot is more recycled than a plastic bag but who cares when you look and sound so damn fabulous?! I mean honestly, I really didn’t know Christina could blow like THAT. I knew she had a voice but homegirl was blowing! And every performance outfit she wears is so sexy and chic! Just go watch it. NOW. Lol.
Hairspray: So I’m going to say something that might make some folks mad…this remake is better than the original. And trust me, I always love originals better than remakes. But something about this new Hairspray is just better. Like the casting flows better because all the actors and actresses play their roles so well. Plus the music, singing, dancing, and acting is fantastic. I watch this movie every few months because it inspires me, makes me think and laugh.
Polly and Polly Coming Home: So if you’re a true connoissiuer of Black culture, you know both these movies without introduction. If you are not, let me educate you. Polly and Polly Coming Home are both Disney films starring Keshia Knight Pulliam and Phylicia Rashad. Both films were directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen. If it isn’t epic to have three iconic Black women come together on a project, I don’t know what is. This film is about young Polly Whittier coming to live with her Aunt (also named Polly) because she recently became an Orphan. In the movie, Polly ends up teaching the town about love, laughter, and forgiveness. The movie also features fantastic dancing, singing, and acting. Please find a way to watch this film (it was made in the 80s and Disney has it on some weird lock down but I snagged both DVDs online) because not many films like this are made so we have to preserve them.
The Sound of Music: Honestly, who doesn’t want to leave the Abbey, fall in love with a sea captain, and help raise his seven children in Austria?! Please sign me up, ASAP. Fine as Christopher Plummer was back in the day, I would’ve done all that and more. LOL! In this film, there’s plenty of singing, dancing, and good ole family fun. So gather up your family and spend time watching this one, you’ll enjoy it. I promise.
All About You: This is an independent film that stars Renee Elise Goldsberry and Terron Brooks. Some of you may remember Terron Brooks from “The Temptations” movie, it also has Lisaraye, and Debbie Allen in it. This movie is such a sweet, and cheesy romantic comedy. When watching it, you can tell they didn’t have much of a budget (all the clothes were awful), but what saves it is the fantastic acting and the script. The movie is a love story about Nicole and Brian, two lost souls or “runways” as they call themselves in the movie who help each other find peace and love.
The Holiday: What happens when you combine Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, and Jack Black?! The Holiday, of course. Not only is Jude Law the handsome English lad that every girl dreams of, you have Jack Black playing the “nice guy” who finally finishes first and not last. Kate Winslet also sounds so deep as the “writer” of the film (random: what is it about a British accent that makes one sound so intelligent?!), and Cameron Diaz is just funny playing her goofy character. So with that said, this film is just fantastic.
And there it is. de la Pen…All Pen Everything.