MOVIE REVIEW: CLAUDINE-1974
My love for the fabulous Ms. Diahann Carroll knows no bounds (hence my screen name, Julia_Claudine_Deveraux). She is gorgeous, classy, ageless,and super-talented. Ms. Carroll's career spans 50 years, a true testament to her talent. I plan to pay proper homage to Ms Carroll in an upcoming post.
Claudine (Diahann Carroll) is a hard-working single mother of six living in a cramped New York City apartment. She makes her living by cleaning homes of rich folks and collecting welfare to help her make ends meet. Comedic moments ensue when the welfare worker makes periodic visits to the home and the family runs through the apartment hiding things such as an iron and various other common household items. Her bratty, mouthy children don't make Claudine's life any easier. She meets a kindly trash man Ruben (James Earl Jones) who heavily pursues her. Due to bad experiences with previous relationships, Claudine resists Ruben's advances but finally gives in. They quickly move from friendship to a serious relationship. Ruben proves to be a stand-up guy by asking Claudine to marry him but seems to be battling some demons of his own. In the interim of their love affair, two of Claudine's older children(Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs and Tamu) undergo radical life changes that threaten the bond between Claudine and Ruben and Claudine's sanity. What are the radical life changes Claudine's older children go through? Will Claudine and Ruben marry? No more spoiler's from me y'all!
Awesome movie that depicts how the welfare system is designed to break down the family unit. This film was a departure from the normally glamorous roles Ms. Carroll was known for playing, but we all know you could dress her in a potato sack and she would still be fabulous. James Earl Jones' screen presence was so riveting, that voice alone commands your attention. A pre-Welcome Back Kotter Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs did a great job playing a young man who was so disillusioned with the "system" at an early age, he does the unthinkable. Again we have another phenomenal soundtrack produced by the late great Curtis Mayfield and sung by Gladys Knight and the Pips. If you don't have it, you should cop this one...you won't be sorry. Another noteworthy fact about this film: Ms. Carroll was nominated for Best Actress at both the Oscars and the Golden Globes...she won neither. Such a shame!
VERDICT: 4 Soul Claps
Labels: Movie Reviews