Beauty Review: Lofty Ideas & Beautiful Aesthetics Can’t Overcome Flimsy Script

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Beauty Review: Lofty Ideas & Beautiful Aesthetics Can’t Overcome Flimsy Script
Beauty, written by Queen & Slim screenwriter Lena Waithe, is a portrait of a young Black woman balancing a career in music, love and family. What endangers her work-life balance is the insidious and parasitic nature of the music industry and fame. However, Beauty ultimately fails due to its weak script, which doesn’t provide a steady framework to tell this particular story. The film is all ideas with no substance.To get more news about pornographic pornographic pornography big free hd, you can visit our official website.
Director Andrew Dosunmu mounts a handsome production, perhaps the most unmistakable charm of a film that is at odds with its ambitions. One can assume that Beauty is a not-so-subtle attempt at an unauthorized Whitney Houston biopic because particular and distinct points in Houston’s life are reinterpreted in the film. This includes her long-rumored romantic relationship with her best friend, Robin Crawford. However, Beauty is not in any way bold enough to claim that title, unlike the recent non-Celine Dion biopic Aline. To further differentiate it from that film, Beauty has an absolute seriousness to it.
The film is scarcely aware of how unendingly dreary it is. It suffers because it attempts to paint a broad picture of the highs and lows of being a Black female artist. It is a distinct experience that has left audiences with a slew of iconic artists whose stories of mistreatment are rooted in misogynoir. It is challenging to encapsulate that experience in under two hours, especially in a satisfying way, but it can be done. However, the attempt to turn a critical lens toward this experience in Beauty is undercut by such a passive, emotionless, blank heroine.
There is no doubt that Gracie Marie Bradley, who plays the titular character, is a beauty. The camera never fails to capture her perfectly poised, but it's accompanied by a face that exudes nothing. Bradley's performance is devoid of any real tangible emotions or substance. She is merely a vessel for the ideas that Waithe attempts to analyze and dissect. In the absence of a narrative structure that facilitates a study of the music industry’s dark side, the film rests on Bradley’s shoulders in a character-driven narrative instead. However, the actress is trapped in an endless saga of aesthetically-driven vignettes featuring her unchangeable face.
Beauty is a strange and unyielding enigma. Luckily, Dosunmu’s style is enough to have one completely and utterly transfixed on what is unfolding on screen. Niecy Nash, who plays Beauty’s concerned mother, is among the few actresses who can capture one's attention with a glance or a breath. To that end, Beauty is not without its talent; many distinguished people appear onscreen — including Giancarlo Esposito — and behind the camer. While the film is elevated by its supporting characters, the most baffling thing of all is the movie's failure to effectively enact the music element of a musical drama. This means the titular performer, modeled after the likes of Whitney Houston, is never heard singing. Her gift is the catalyst for everything in the film, yet viewers are never given a taste of it. This decision crystalizes what is wrong overall: The film is distant. It hints at what it wishes to tackle, but barely scrapes the surface; it is all observed from afar.
Beauty could have gone in a myriad of directions. It could have been a haunting horror that recontextualizes the atrocities of an industry that leeches off of Black women until nothing is left. This could have been a compelling by-the-numbers biopic that used the trajectory of Houston’s life to articulate the specific dangers Black women face. Instead, Waithe and Dosunmu only hint at a critical observation of this industry through a highly stylized lens. The film gives off the impression of being vital and relevant, but that’s about it. It is a surface-level tale that goes nowhere. Beauty is worth watching for the style alone, but the lack of a single note sung by the eponymous lead is a significant turn-off.
Posted 16 Nov 2022

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