The Watermelon Woman - SHOWTIMES


The Watermelon Woman - SHOWTIMES (2016)


The Watermelon Woman

IMDB - Score
6.3/10
(519)
Release Date:
21.11.2016
Genre:
Length:
90 Minute
Director
Cast:
,

Movie Plot

Cheryl, a young black lesbian, works a day job in a video store while trying to make a film about a black actress from the 1930s known for playing the stereotypical "mammy" roles relegated to black actresses during the period. It was the first feature film directed by a black lesbian.





The Watermelon Woman - Show Times

Show All Comments

Jordan Alvarado ( 2017-03-14 )

Good idea, bad execution - SPOILERS
 

*** This review may contain spoilers ***



Lindsay Buchanan ( 2017-02-22 )

Not On Any Syrup Bottle
 

I recently saw a short portion of this film in my cinema class and it's an interesting approach to the documentary in that... it's not. It's a pseudo-documentary that doesn't let us in on the ruse until the credits role. So, an interesting idea is presented: An African American Lesbian is the director and star of this film who attempts to reconstruct the history of a fictional african american lesbian film star: The Watermelon Woman. Her reasoning is that she doesn't have a historical past for her rolemodels, so she'll make one herself. I think it's a pretty interesting idea, and I want to see the rest of the film now that I'm thinking about it, BUT the acting in this movie is SO bad, you'll want to shoot yourself five minutes into the movie, tops. Again, wanna see a movie about African-American Lesbian Filmmakers, this is the one for you... but it's really bad. I feel bad saying this because of her severely marginalized social position, but bad art is bad art no matter who you are.



Janet Chambers ( 2017-02-22 )

A great low budget, first feature - Spoilers
 

There are hundreds upon thousands of lesbian movies, and the majority are labelled "Adult". Name one lesbian movie about black women that isn't pornographic? Watching this one was something I could relate to. Finally, a movie touching on black history, interracial attraction, stereotypes, and the fictional day-in-the-life of an aspiring film-maker. More original than most, speaking as a black woman. Excuse the bad technology, and you've got a story about a woman researching her black history and getting laid in the process! Maybe she couldn't get the rights to do "The Aunt Jemima Story". You know, that black maid who's face stared back at you from the pancake box, having gone through a few make-overs through the years? There's even a scene where Cheryl holds up movie stills of black actresses playing the usual slave/maid who become unknowns in the process. Well, this is one important movie for me, and I hope more people appreciate this as they listen to Cheryl's closing monologue. Now this movie deserves a remake! 6/10



Leah Hayes ( 2017-02-07 )

Time does fly, and people do change.
 

*** This review may contain spoilers ***



Nancy Warren ( 2017-02-23 )

What it's like to not be a white straight male.
 

Contrary to IMDB describing this movie as a "drama/documentary," it's actually a comedy/MOCKumentary. Cheryl Dunye plays "Cheryl Dunye," a video store employee who is making a documentary about a black film actress from the 1930s. The 1930s actress is a fictional character, and Dunye does a nice job integrating the "film within a film" into her story. Yes there are dramatic elements, particularly around race relations in the lesbian community. But there are many comedic moments, and very droll one liners. Dunye does a nice job gently poking fun at lesbians, African Americans, and radical leftists (the scene at the Center for Lesbian Info and Technology -- figure out THAT acronism -- is hilarious). Some of the acting is amateurish (though Dunye herself is a standout! I wish she would keep appearing on-camera in other films. She's very talented). And Dunye the director should have done re-takes in a couple of shots where the actors blow their lines. But the clever idea of a mockumentary really makes the film interesting -- nice debut for Dunye. Will be interesting to see how her career pans out.



Lindsay Buchanan ( 2017-01-28 )

Spoiler Included Within Review
 

This is a very lighthearted film about a black video store clerk (Cheryl Dunye) who wants to make a documentary about an early black actress, known only as The Watermelon Woman." The fact that both Cheryl (Dunye) and the actress are lesbians keeps her going. In fact, in life imitating art, Cheryl finds that The Watermelon Woman was having a lesbian relationship with a white director, and then, she begins a relationship with a white video store customer (Guinevere Turner - American Psycho, Itty Bitty Titty Committee). The film explored black language, early black actresses, black lesbians, mammies, and watermelon. It even featured an interview with Camille Paglia discussing mammies and watermelon in the context of blacks and Italians, It's nice to see Italians spoken of in something other than the Mob. Her BFF Tamera (Valarie Walker) is a party girl, but she draws the line at interracial relationships, and that causes a problem for Cheryl. There are a lot of good scenes throughout the movie, and it made it worthwhile even if the acting wasn't particularly good. The end credits will surprise you.



Homer Mcgee ( 2017-04-12 )

Black Lesbians, White Lesbians, Transparent Lesbians, and some spoilers.
 

*** This review may contain spoilers ***



Shawn Mendez ( 2017-02-28 )

obsession - super sweet!
 

This film is about a young woman who wants to do a film project but can't think of anything worthwhile, until a character in an old film takes her interest. She decides to make the actress, listed in the film's credits as 'the watermelon woman', the subject of her project. In the scenes that follow, she discovers the the actress's life mirrors certain elements of her own. It is a gentle story about love, disillusionment, race and time- how we don't have much of it. The acting is spontaneous and fresh, with well developed characters- no one is presented as perfect, or evil. It is not a template film- no car chases, no rom-com clichés (or clever twists on them). Like all good thoughtful films it makes us look within. For some people this is uncomfortable. I am none of the things the main character is, but for a short while she has communicated a little bit of what it feels like to be her.



Sherry Peterson ( 2017-04-06 )

a fantastic movie
 

*** This review may contain spoilers ***



Brenda Padilla ( 2017-02-20 )

Might encourage exclusivism in naive audiences.
 

Fabulous depiction of a film within a documentary within a film, thought provoking and well executed. Poignant, and seething with undercurrents of racism sexism and political correctness, I loved this movie, despite having initially viewed it for a university assignment. Whilst character profiles may seem a little two dimensional, this film concentrates upon the superficial, and the role that history plays in designing the self. Perhaps the main question raised for me about the film was when does something become real? If the watermelon woman does not indeed exist, then when does her history become truth, and is it through the making of this film?



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