...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

July 13, 2006

Madea's Family Reunion - 6

Based on Tyler Perry's earlier stage play, this film deals with issues of family and the Black matriarchal system that exist today. Perry plays an old black woman in drag (He did the same in his previous film, Diary of a Mad Black Woman). The main story is of two sisters who are treated differently by their mother. One seems to have found happiness, but it is evil disguised by the right fashions. The other has found a down to earth relationship that seems to be restoring true trust and love. The family finally has the reunion and it is a call to renewal by the Matriarchs. The film is both funny and deadly serious at time. The film concludes with a wedding, and Maya Angelou reading a beautiful poem (I would link to it, but can't find it).
The main point of the film is this speech given at the family reunion:

Family reunions are about uniting the family, bringing together the young and old. Singing and dancing and thanking God, giving him the glory. Thanking him for getting us over. As we marched up the road this afternoon, what we saw were young men gambling, fighting, cussing. Women with no clothes on gyrating all over on this land. Do you see this shack. The man and woman we were born here gave birth to this generation. They were slaves. They worked this ground, but they bought it from the widow of the slave owner and that's the kind of blood we have running though our veins. That's the stock we are made of. What happened to us. What happened to us. Who are you. Do you know who you are. What happened to the pride and the dignity and the love and respect that we had for one another. Where did it go. And how, How do we get it back. I'ma tell you. Young Black men, take your place. We need you. Your sons and daughters need you. Did you understand what I just said. You were sold off and had no choice, yes but now it's time to stay. Take your place. Now. Starting now. Starting now. Young black women, you are more than your thighs and your hips. You are beautiful, strong, powerful. I want more from you. Take your place. I want every single one of you, young man, young woman, turn to the next person standing alongside of you. Grab them and hug them and tell them that you love 'em. Tell them, 'If you need anything, come to me.' 'If you need somebody to talk to, come to me.' 'I'll give you the shoulder, I'll give you the hug. I'll feed you, I'll clothe you if you need it. That's how you start from this moment. When you leave this reunion today, you take that with you.

No comments: