Thursday, June 17, 2010
Sex, Okra, and Salted Butter
I liked this movie about a West African paterfamilias in Paris adjusting to some major life changes. It is light, but not frivolous. There’s the sense of a philosophy behind the lightness…a comic, as opposed to a tragic view of life. The comic sense of life doesn’t ignore loss, conflict, and unrequited desire, but neither does it ignore the small things, the everyday graces that make life bearable—not the least of which is a lively sense of humor. While I found a lot to admire in this film, I have the feeling that it won’t stick with me for too long. Maybe that’s a consequence of the comic tone, I don’t know. LC said the acting wasn’t that great and I admit that it wasn’t awe-inspiring. There was no sense of the mysteries of life being opened up to you, which was kind of how I felt about another recent movie based on a similar premise: 35 Shots of Rum. That film’s patriarch had a kind of heroic aura. He was a man’s man and a lady’s man and an everyman all in one. The patriarch of Sex, Okra and Salted Butter was just a man, warts and all, but a well-meaning one at heart.