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This documentary, which features Going Natural  is screening at the 34th St. AMC/Loews Theater on 8th Avenue next Friday, September 21st, at 5:30 pm in Manhattan, New York! Make sure you come and bring a friend or 10. Here is my review. 

They didn't have the finances that Chris Rock had when he produced "Good Hair", or all the advantages that come with being a celebrity, and it's very likely that some will say that the movie is pro nappy but I think "In our heads about hair" is a feel good movie that shows a rare perspective on Black hair.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

The producers: Paulette Tabb, Maitefa Angaza, Hemamset Angaza, Anu Prestonia

 

 

 

 


They didn't have the finances that Chris Rock had when he produced "Good Hair", or all the advantages that come with being a celebrity, and it's very likely that some will say that the movie is pro nappy but I think "In our heads about hair" is a feel good movie that shows a rare perspective on Black hair.


There was a waiting list for the screening of the film

Anu Prestonia, owner of Khamit Kinks, choose to make this film as an assignment of a workshop. She explains: The project could be anything but had to include at least 4 other people and up to 125 others. The purpose of the workshop was to show you how to come together with others to make something that has a broader impact. Not only was it about coming together with others, but also how to enroll others in your your vision.


The audience was as colorful as can be

So Anu got her good friends Paulette Tabb, Maitefa Angaza and Hemamset Angaza, Maitefa's son, on board. With Anu as the Executive Producer and Hemamset as a their Director and camera man, they got to work. Maitefa, journalist and writer was the co-producer and Paulette, former actress, the move critic and advisor. Together they interviewed friends, family, well-known, unknown and random people about hair. In the streets in the salon, on and off location.

"In our Heads about Hair" opens strong with spoken word artist Numi Dee citing an incredible poem that expresses her pride in natural beauty. Her impressive performance sets the tone for what one is about to see.

It sure is a joy to watch people taking pride in their natural hair. Even for me who is used to it, it was  refreshing to see the pride expressed out in the open on the big screen. Hearing Sandra Lewis say that it boggles people that she, a dark skin woman loves her natural hair, was affirming.


Carolyn A Butts, organizer of the Reel Sister Film Festival - The beautiful Fernandun June Terry, also featured in the film.

All the stereotypical ideas of African hair are also featured. Nothing new one would say but I beg to differ. It still hurts to hear a talented black woman testify that her dark skin essentially doesn't allow her to be natural.


Anu and Simeko

The spontaneous street interviews however, are priceless and lighten up the mood. Remarkably, the men, young and old, all say they prefer natural hair or real hair to say the least. Professor Marc Lamont Hill made a compelling statement of his preference for natural women. In another world one would wonder why weaves are so popular.

The expression of a Black woman with a weave watching her white boyfriend say that he loves natural hair is brings about the hardest laughs. Startled, with a dirty look on her face as if it can't be true, the scene is definitely funny to watch but when you give it a bit more thought, it is actually very sad.

The other expression that stuck with me is the one of a woman getting her hair done in a salon. She loves her relaxed tresses and never intends to go natural which would have been ok if her face just didn't harden up every time she was asked a question about natural hair. As if she was offended by even asking about it. I guess you have see this for yourself to see what I mean.

Overall the film is a mix of notables like professor Farah Griffin and Melba Toliver making statements and interviews of random people, young and old sharing their hair experience. The emotional and happy testimonies of two different women who are bald for different reasons shows us another unique perspective of what lives in our heads about hair. 

Despite the fact that the technical limitations of no budget and little equipment are noticeable every now and then, I think the movie is a success. Not only was there a waiting list for this premier night, the response of the audience said it all. It was clear that they felt the movie. They laughed, sighed, clapped and cheered during the 75 minutes. At times you could even hear a pin drop.

The Q and A with the film makers was a good conclusion of the night. When an audience asks to buy your DVD, you know you did a job you can be proud of.

For me it was not only a true honor to be part of this film, it was very humbling to hear two of my statements cited by the film makers when asked what the most astonishing thing was they they learned during the making of the film. I won't tell you their answers because I want you to come up with your own conclusion. Hopefully you'll let them know. Their website is in the making but of course I will keep you posted.