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‘Attractiveness’ Overview: Lena Waithe and Andrew Dosunmu’s Song Drama Hits The entire Mistaken Notes – IndieWire



Jun 29, 2022 3:01 am

Stephanie Meiling/NETFLIX © 202
The myth, energy, and affect of the track trade has been well-documented in movement photos. This very minute, audiences can cross to a theater and be told all concerning the highs and lows of musical icon Elvis Presley. It’s tough to craft one thing unique from a global suffering from as many good fortune tales as horror tales, lots of them already informed (and informed once more) on monitors each giant and small.
And it’s much more tough to do this when your major persona — offered as a generational skill deserving of her personal cinematic match — by no means in fact sings a music. Such is the case with screenwriter Lena Waithe’s new Netflix musical drama “Attractiveness.” Despite the fact that closely impressed by means of the lifetime of Whitney Houston, sufficient that it will nicely qualify as one thing of an unauthorized biopic of the huge musical celebrity, “Attractiveness” fails to hit the correct notes, leaving an excessive amount of unstated and (reasonably actually) unsung.

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Beginning within the late-’70s, Attractiveness (Gracie Marie Bradley) follows a tender would-be celebrity with a formidable voice, one so tough that her personal mom (Niecy Nash) is threatened by means of it and her father (Giancarlo Esposito) is determined to milk it. The one person who turns out to have Attractiveness’s perfect pursuits at middle is Jasmine (Aleyse Shannon), her perfect pal and (slightly secret) romantic spouse. But if Attractiveness is obtainable a recording contract, the pair’s courting is threatened because the track global (and its many vultures) makes an attempt to show Attractiveness into one thing she’s now not.

Similar to Houston, Attractiveness is strongly torn between her love of gospel track and pa. The similarities don’t forestall there: Attractiveness’s mom is a former singer, now not not like Houston’s personal mom, Cissy, whilst Attractiveness’s courting with Jasmine is corresponding to Houston’s alleged long-term courting with Robin Crawford. Even Attractiveness’s reputedly fascinating report govt/overseer (deliciously performed by means of Sharon Stone) appears like a freshened up tackle Clive Davis, who found out Houston. And that’s even pronouncing the rest about Attractiveness’s power male neighbor, who displays up dressed as though he was once an additional on VH1’s New Version TV film.
If Waithe and director Andrew Dosunmu sought after to do a pretend Houston biopic, that can have equipped quite a few fertile floor. As an alternative, the whole lot about “Attractiveness” is muted. Muted feelings, muted relationships, even muted discussion. Worst but: we by no means pay attention Attractiveness sing. Certain, we see her report her songs in the back of glass whilst others touch upon how she possesses “the voice of angel.” She’s “iconic,” nearly the second one coming of Ella Fitzgerald, however you’d by no means know that, as a result of we by no means pay attention Bradley (or a well-chosen voice double) herself. Dosunmu and Waithe appear extra all in favour of how Attractiveness perspectives herself via different singers — distancing the nature from the target market in addition to from Attractiveness herself — like Patti LaBelle, Donna Summer season, and Judy Garland.

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“Attractiveness” is at its most powerful when it in fact feedback at the pernicious nature of the track trade and the way it handled Black artists like Houston. We see Attractiveness transfer between observing Donna Summer season carry out “I Really feel Love” and a gospel performer, illustrating how the promoting, reaction, and tool of track adjustments between the 2 genres. As soon as Attractiveness begins to develop in recognition, she’s pressured to prep for interview questions whilst being reminded to talk in “correct English.” Her hair is modified as a result of “little Black women like lengthy, flowing hair.” Despite the fact that Attractiveness brings up evident evaluations, like that requirements of attractiveness for Black ladies are continuously dictated by means of white other people, or wondering she has to attraction to an city target market and white teenager women first, taking into account that Houston’s trajectory is being so clearly telegraphed, the target market is aware of those solutions don’t topic finally.
Nonetheless, Gracie Marie Bradley is luminous within the identify function. Cinematographer Benoit Delhomme’s digicam revels in shooting the angles of Bradley’s face and the younger actress displays the transformation from shy woman into assured pop celebrity easily. However the persona is a whole cipher; described by means of others as being a myth for audiences, Attractiveness actually is solely that. We all know not anything about her out of doors of a) she’s a just right singer, b) seems to revel in it, and c) loves Jasmine.
However that’s all floor. There’s not anything deeper about Attractiveness, not anything concerning the individual she needs to be or what she needs out of her profession or how she feels about the rest. She’s managed by means of everybody round her, from her father, who pushes her to signal the contract, to the studio pros. Towards the top of the movie, Attractiveness begins to ward off reasonably, however she simply as simply appears to be falling in deeper. Too continuously characters take a look at her and make assumptions or the digicam simply stares at her, as though to look forward to her to do one thing attention-grabbing. She’s like a personality in a fairy story (she is called Attractiveness, finally; her brothers are named Cain and Abel), a cautionary determine supposed to turn the target market…nicely, one thing concerning the trade, definitely.
Nash is cast as Attractiveness’s mom, however she’s portrayed as not anything greater than a Cassandra determine, giving her daughter selection bon mots like “I haven’t had the highlight on my face, however I’ve observed other people get burned by means of it.” It’s unclear why this lady would wish her daughter to sing in any respect, taking into account how continuously she talks concerning the den of iniquity that she perceives the report trade to be. Too continuously Nash is there to remind audiences that moms are it seems that psychically certain to their youngsters, however it sort of feels like an excuse for nonetheless extra narcissism from but every other undercooked persona.
The one different persona with substance of their efficiency is Aleyse Shannon as Jasmine. Jasmine and Attractiveness’s bond is supposed to be the private courting within the eponymous persona’s lifestyles, and Shannon performs Jasmine as each a protecting pal and lover who really has Attractiveness’s perfect pastime at middle. And but the pair’s romantic aspect is oddly chaste, with Dosunmu content material to easily center of attention on mild brow touching, and not anything else. It might be indicative of the period of time through which the movie is about, however even if the 2 ladies are by myself, there’s little party in their courting. That’s a disgrace, as Shannon and Bradley have showcase chemistry.

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“Attractiveness” can have one thing attention-grabbing to mention concerning the cultural and aesthetic straitjacket Black feminine artists persevered within the Seventies and Eighties, and whether or not that’s modified (or now not) even as of late. However Dosunmu’s airless directing and Waithe’s skinny script most effective quantity to loud allegory that by no means is going any place and drowns out any compelling concepts that may well be price making a song.
“Attractiveness” is streaming now on Netflix.
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The Friend Who Sticks Closer than a Brother




The Friend Who Sticks Closer than a Brother

Embracing True Friendship: The Friend Who Sticks Closer Than a Brother

Friendship is a valuable asset that enriches our lives by providing companionship, support, and a shoulder to cry on. But have you ever had a buddy who goes above and beyond—someone who remains closer than a brother? In a world where relationships can be fickle, a friend who sticks by us through thick and thin is a rare and priceless gift.

More Than Just Blood Ties

Consider the tie between siblings, which is based on blood and shared history. Consider a buddy who is more than just a family member. “One who has untrustworthy friends soon comes to ruin,” says Proverbs 18:24 (NIV), “but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”

This verse describes a friendship that goes beyond basic conditions. It’s a bond founded on trust, loyalty, and real concern for one another.

Continuous Support

Consider a buddy who is present not only during happy times but also during difficult times. This type of friend is unconcerned about changing circumstances or personal gain. They provide their presence, encouragement, and steadfast support.

Jesus expresses the core of such friendship in John 15:13 (NIV): “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. This selfless affection serves as the foundation for a lasting connection.

Journeys Together

Consider a friend you’ve shared many stages of life with—the highs, the lows, and everything in between. This shared experience forges a link that extends beyond surface-level exchanges. The value of companionship is brilliantly captured in Ecclesiastes 4:9–10 (NIV): “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.”

A friend who sticks closer than a brother is someone who goes beside us through life’s ups and downs, lending a solid hand and an ear to listen.

A Mirror of God’s Love

As a symbol of God’s love for us, consider the buddy who sticks closer than a brother. God Himself offers an unbroken, unchanging, and everlasting companionship. “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord,” says the Bible in Romans 8:38–39.

God’s love is the ultimate paradigm of true friendship—a love that is not conditional but remains faithful regardless of what happens.

Conclusion: Value true friendship.

A friend who sticks closer to you than a sibling is a treasure to be treasured. This type of friendship is founded on love, trust, and mutual care rather than convenience or shared interests. May we seek to be that sort of friend to others in our lives, just as God offers us His unfailing love.

In a world where relationships can be fleeting, let us create friendships that will endure. Let us be the sort of friends who are present in both joy and sadness, who offer unconditional support, and who mirror God’s unfailing love. We are reminded of the beauty of true friendship, which clings closer than a brother, as we welcome and cherish these unique and valuable ties.

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The Just God




The Just God

The Just God: The Divine Balance of Justice and Mercy

The concept of justice is intertwined with the fabric of human society. We seek justice, responsibility, and reparation for wrongs done. But have you ever pondered a God who is not only just but also perfectly just? The Just God is a lighthouse of truth and righteousness, providing a profound awareness of justice and kindness that transcends human comprehension.

Justice in Pursuit

Consider a world where wrongdoers go unpunished and the disadvantaged have no recourse. The pursuit of justice is a natural human goal that reflects a feeling of rightness and order. And if we as humans value justice, how much more should the Creator of the universe, who is completely just?

According to Deuteronomy 32:4 (NIV), “He is the rock; his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. He is a loyal God who does no wrong, who is straight and just. This verse reveals God’s character, which is characterized by unwavering justice.

Justice and Mercy in Balance

Consider yourself in front of a judge who holds you accountable for every action and decision you make. Imagine that same judge showing mercy and giving you a second opportunity despite the evidence against you. The just God is kind as well as just.

This delicate balance is captured in Psalm 103:10–11 (NIV): “He does not treat us as our sins deserve, nor does He repay us according to our iniquities. For his love for people who fear him is as high as the skies are above the earth. God’s justice is balanced by his unending love and kindness.

The Redemption of Justice

Consider a debt that you will never be able to repay—a debt of mistakes and wrongs that weigh heavy on your soul. In His perfect justice, the just God provides a solution. God provides a mechanism for justice to be served and redemption to be offered through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ.

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” says Romans 3:23–24 (NIV), “and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. This is an example of justice being met via the redemptive act of Christ’s sacrifice.

A Call to Justice

Consider a society in which justice is not simply a notion but a way of life. In our interactions with others, the just God calls us to exemplify justice. Micah 6:8 (NIV) states unequivocally, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. What does the Lord expect of you? Act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God.”

Living justly entails treating people with fairness, compassion, and respect, as the character of the just God requires.

Finishing: Adoring the Just God

The Just God asks us to comprehend the breadth of His justice—a justice that supports truth, requires accountability, and strikes a balance between mercy and justice. God’s justice and mercy merge in the person of Jesus Christ, offering us redemption and restoration.

May we turn to the just God as our ultimate standard as we traverse a world that frequently grapples with issues of fairness. May we seek His wisdom and counsel in order to live justly and treat others with love and justice. We find not only a paradigm of perfect justice but also an invitation to experience the transformative power of His kindness when we embrace the Just God.

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The Pleasure of Serving Others: A Pathway to Achievement




The Joy of Serving Others: A Pathway to Fulfillment

The Pleasure of Serving Others: A Highway to Contentment

Have you ever ever felt the nice and cozy glow that effects from lending a serving to hand to a stranger, the enjoyment that lasts for days after the act of kindness? That emotion offers a way of the pride of serving to others. The straightforward act of serving to can give us a sense of function and pleasure in contrast to the rest in a society that incessantly pushes us to place our consideration on ourselves.

The Want to Serve

Believe a society the place everybody labored to fortify the lives of people of their instant neighborhood. The need to lend a serving to hand, proportion a load, and supply comfort is on the core of carrier. The instance used to be established through Jesus Himself when he stated, “For even the Son of Guy didn’t come to be served, however to serve, and to provide his lifestyles as a ransom for plenty of.” (NIV, Mark 10:45)

Serving others is extra than just a nice deed; it is a way to emulate the compassion and love that Christ proven for us.

Discovering Pleasure in Selfless Giving

Believe spending time with the aged or going to a neighborhood refuge to hear their stories and cause them to really feel essential. Those tiny acts of kindness won’t appear to be a lot, however they be capable to make any person’s day higher, create relationships, and toughen a sense of group.

A better feeling of pleasure emerges after we set aside our personal issues and be aware of the wishes of others. The Bible admonishes us, “Every of you can use no matter present you’ve gotten won to serve others, as trustworthy stewards of God’s grace in its more than a few paperwork.” (NIV) 1 Peter 4:10 We specific the particular talents God has given us through serving others, and it’s in those deeds of carrier that we discover authentic pleasure.

Have an effect on Unmeasurable

Take into consideration the impact if all of us realized to experience serving to others. If we take a bit spoil from our tense schedules to lend a hand a neighbor, supply a sympathetic ear, or donate cash to a reason we reinforce. Small acts of kindness have the facility to unfold, sparking a sequence response of generosity and optimistic exchange.

In step with the NIV translation of Matthew 25:40, Jesus stated, “Actually I inform you, no matter you probably did for this sort of least of those brothers and sisters of mine, you probably did for me.” No longer simplest can we fortify the lives of other folks we serve, however we additionally perform Jesus’ command to like and deal with the ones round us.

Development Relationships and Connections

Believe the sensation of camaraderie that comes from cooperating with others to reach a shared purpose. Folks come in combination via carrier, growing ties and friendships that differently won’t have took place. It serves as a reminder that we’re all part of a broader group, and that group would possibly take pleasure in the acts we do.

Serving others permits us to peer the arena from many angles and to realize the demanding situations and victories of other folks round us. Our lives are enriched and {our relationships} are deepened through this sensitivity.

Conclusion: Discovering Contentment Via Carrier

Every people has a skill that is able to be opened: the pleasure of serving to others. It serves as a reminder that our lives are meant to be about extra than just our personal pursuits; they’re an opportunity to fortify the lives of others.

Let’s thus embody the pride of serving to others, if it is by means of deeds of kindness, volunteering, or simply being conscious about their wishes. The easy act of serving would possibly supply mild and hope in a global that every so often turns out overwhelming. As we emulate Christ and prolong ourselves in love, we no longer simplest exchange the lives of others but additionally revel in a deep feeling of success and enjoyment that overflows into our personal hearts.

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