Can we have a round of applause for this film and for the amazing Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and the surprisingly funny and witty performance by Janelle Monae? Their performances, along with Kevin Costner, Kristen Dunst, Jim Parsons, Mahershala Ali and everyone else in between made this movie what it was. This is the greatness that occurs when true actors come together with amazing chemistry to make a movie people!
Anyway, there were so many layers to this film that I don’t even know where to begin. First, lets talk about the fact that these were black, educated women who were not afraid to show it. They were all determined to be the best in their field with no excuses. This got me thinking, how many excuses do we make daily that stops us from being the best? I literally had to check myself while watching this movie and really ask, am I being great? These women were excelling in the 1960’s while dealing with segregation and overt racism in the workplace, with no one to really stand up for them. What is our excuse?
As I continued to watch the film, not only did I think about them being inimitable in their field but I also thought about their fortitude. The scene when Octavia Spencer was kicked out of the library with her sons made me think about the amount of strength it must have taken to be in her shoes back in those days. If having the will to just comply and walk away when what you really want to tell them is to have several seats isn’t strength, i don’t know what is.
Furthermore, enveloped in all of the black girl magic that was filled with power and excellence, we also saw the portrayal of the fact that women can be professionals, mothers and wives. Amen to that! They didn’t show much detail on the intricacies of their marriages or relationships with their children, but it was pretty clear that they juggled it all.
Ultimately, after going through all of these thoughts in my head–yes, I think alot– I still came back to the same question, what is our excuse? This film was a demonstration that neither race nor gender should stop you from being the best at whatever it is that you want to do. I am not saying that racism isn’t prevalent or that women have equality in all areas, because we all know that isn’t true. What I am saying is that to be able to rise above any of that takes sheer determination and tenacity. It also takes embracing who you are, putting to use the special gifts given to you and only you, and not to allow external factors to stop you. This movie left me nothing less than extremely inspired and motivated to be great, because everything that these women embodied is in me. Its in all of us; so really, we have no excuses.