Thursday, July 31, 2008

All about Us DVD

DVD Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Boris Kodjoe and Ryan Michelle Bathe Co-Star in Semi-Autobiographical Family Flick

Edward (Boris Kodjoe) and Stacey Brown (Ryan Michelle Bathe) are a young African-American couple trying to make it as filmmakers in Los Angeles. However, they haven’t met with much success, primarily because they’ve been pitching the studios with their script for a wholesome family flick.
The feedback they’ve received thusfar from potential investors is that “black people don’t care about good content.” Since they haven’t been inclined to compromise their values by dumbing-down the plotline, the Browns find themselves struggling financially.
This is fine until a baby comes along, when suddenly their infant son (Luke Swanson) becomes their priority. After agreeing that the Hollywood rat race is no place to raise a child, they decide to move to Clarksdale, Mississippi with hopes of not only producing their picture independently but of asking local celebrity Morgan Freeman to appear in the picture.
So unfolds All about Us, a semi-autobiographical love story chronicling the similar options once weighed in real life by the husband/wife team of producer Michael Swanson and scriptwriter/director Christine Swanson. Their tenderhearted morality play, set in the Delta Region, offers an array of valuable insights along the way about what really matters most in life while simultaneously delighting you for the duration.
The supporting cast includes LaTanya Richardson (wife of Samuel L. Jackson), Ruby Dee (widow of Ossie Davis) and, yes, Morgan Freeman in a quickie-cameo. The Oscar-winning actor proved to be a good sport, even graciously allowing the crew to shoot inside his restaurant and blues club.
Seems like the Swansons got the last laugh, given that in the end they were able to tell exactly the sort of high-quality tale the execs said no one would be interested in.

Excellent (4 stars)
Rated PG for mature themes.
Running time: 90 minutes
Studio: CodeBlack Entertainment
DVD Extras: Commentary by the husband-wife team of writer/director Christine Swanson and producer Michael Swanson, theatrical trailer, cast interviews and a “The Making of” featurette.

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