Keisha Film Analysis

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The worldwide success of hip hop music and culture over the past thirty years has transcended into the mainstream worlds of literature, fashion, and film. Hip hop music and culture were created as a form expression, propaganda, struggle, justice, and freedom. Hip hop artists unapologetically give the world a piece of black culture and urban life. This has forged new regions in mainstream culture to proclaim control over the depiction and views of blacks. This is especially evident in the black film industry where hip hop culture has played a vital role in black filmmaking that is focused on black culture. However, this merger between hip hop, urban life, and black films must be executed effectively. It is important that these films advance…show more content…
Colorism has always been a huge issue in the black community. Colorism is defined as the defined as discrimination and prejudice based on the lightness or darkness of peoples skin tone (Hochschild, 2007). Colorism tends to favor lighter skin and closeness to European/Whiteness. It is the reflection of white ideologies of beauty and has been constantly perpetuated in the media. Lighter skin is seen has prettier and better. However, in this film Keisha was represented as beautiful and shown is a positive light. She was the queen of the house and depicted as a strong black women, but also feminine. Her femininity is important to highlight because dark skin women tended to be depicted as aggressive, unapproachable, not wanted by men, and/or in the background. Light-skin is equivalent to femininity and virtue, whereas dark skin color is tantamount to lack of femininity and virtue including attractiveness (Manatu, 2003). There is a scene in Tommy’s house where Keisha is on the balcony above all the men below in the living room telling them what to do. This scene shows her power and the respect the men had for her. Her dark skin and her blackness are also celebrated throughout the film because she made even darker by the way the film is shot which is no accident. Her strength and physicality do not counter her femininity.…show more content…
Being that his background is music videos, Belly is shot just like that. The film has been criticized for this type cinematography, but one must think about the time and culture of that time. This film was shot during the late nineties, when young people used to sit around the TV for hours just watching music videos which is how some people discovered new music. Music videos used to be a really big thing, even reaching the level and budget of short feature films. The cinematic element of music videos that is added to Belly is that each shot is a moment to remember. “Cinematography truly makes a movie, above the actors and words each scene should be visually memorable (Cowan, 2012). In many scenes everything is the same color from the walls to the clothes the characters wore. The first time the audience sees Tommy’s house they will probably never forget it. The first scene within Tommy’s house, the viewer sees that everything was black and white. The furniture, the art, and the clothes worn were all black and white. Furthermore, when the young girl, Kiana enters the film she is dressed in pink from head to toe and everything in room was pink as well. This is a reflection of how some of the most memorable music videos were shot in the late nineties like the “Say My Name” video by

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