Tyler Perry has grown into one of the most successful directors of films aimed toward the African American community. Tyler Perry adapted the film "For Colored Girls" from the poetic play "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf" and cast it with his regular troupe of actors, delivering another financially successful hit to his body of work.
Casting the Film
One thing Tyler Perry has always been capable of is putting together a cast of amazing performers from all walks of life. "For Colored Girls" is no different, with former pop diva Janet Jackson and current pop star Macy Gray joining legends of African American cinema such as Whoopi Goldberg and Phylicia Rashad. Each actress represents a specific color in the movie, dealing with the personal hardships the character faces.
Unlike many of Tyler Perry's movies, this is an R-rated drama, dealing with feminism while looking at the troubles of nine women struggling with their personal demons. Each character in the movie deals with a different social and emotional problem that she must deal with in her own specific ways. These hot-button topics include love, abandonment, infidelity, abortion and rape, but "For Colored Girls" deals with them in a respectful manner.
One unique aspect of this movie is the use of the actual poetry from the source material. When various characters face their harshest problems and turmoil, they recite the poetry from the play verbatim. When one woman comes home to find her husband has left her, she eases her sadness with a poem. When a woman questions another about a rape, the answer to the questions takes the form of another poem. Tyler Perry uses the poems from the source material with great respect and adds them throughout the film to fill in his story.
The Tragedies They Must Live Through (Spoilers)
It is a wonder these women survive their experiences at all. Kelly (Kerry Washington) has an incurable STD that has stripped her of her ability to have children. Jo (Janet Jackson) learns she has HIV and her husband is cheating on her with other men. Yasmine (Anika Noni Rose) suffers a horrible rape by a man following a date. Gilda (Phylicia Rashad) is witness to a man brutally murdering his girlfriend Crystal's (Kimberly Elise) two children. Nyla (Tessa Thompson) is a young girl who chooses to attempt an abortion and has to deal with her overly religious mother, Alice (Whoopi Goldberg). While Tyler Perry has made a living off religious-themed comedy dramas, this straight drama contains his most sobering themes yet.
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