Glimmers of Life

Archive for July 2010

Thank goodness for the Cornerhouse in Manchester! I’d heard about this Chris Rock documentary on the radio and searched every cinema in the area to see if they were showing Good Hair, and nothing. I did actually even try the Cornerhouse website but there was no information. A week later they said it was coming soon and finally I got to see it.

At first I wasn’t sure whether it would be worth the £5 entry, but I decided that if you don’t support these things then later down the line you won’t get the option so I handed over my card and let it bear the strain. And I’m glad I did.

Good Hair is a documentary headed by Chris Rock which delves into some of the issues surrounding Black Hair, why every black woman wants straight hair, what lengths they’ll go to to get it, and how black men feel about it – with a bit of a hair competition thrown into the mix.

As a piece of entertainment I enjoyed it. I laughed, I questioned, I got angry (see next piece) – it touched me.  But it also bugged me a little though that rather than delve for answers it simply offered up the obvious or reverted to the superficial. Like when you go to a restaurant for a good meal, and you know the chef has freshly cooked the main course but that they’ve just microwaved the dessert from a packet.

Overall this is an accessible if not a little light film about Black Hair. I’d say this is definitely one to watch, especially if you’re black or know someone black, as it touches on some interesting points. Ideally though I’d say take a group of friends so you can talk about it afterwards. I’ve found myself chatting with friends who haven’t seen it about some of the points made, but it would have been much better if they’d seen it too.

I don’t usually buy Marie Claire, I don’t even really read it as it seems a little high brow for my childlike knowledge of fashion and trends. But last month my job required me to buy a copy and I decided to sneak it home for a cheeky read. To my surprise I came across a whole bag dedicated to black women.
Now back when I used to be an avid reader of the Guardian on Saturday, one of the many highlights was the section written by Hannah Pool called “The New Black” (i think). It was usually an article about something “black”, or at least that black women would be interested in and as a black woman I was interested. But then it stopped – and I was left without a guide….
So this section in Marie Claire is a welcome surprise. In the edition I read, it had a bit about having natural hair, and a bit about make up. It was small considering it is such a fat magazine but appreciated.
This month’s edition of the magazine has a shower gel freebie, so it may just be worth getting a copy…