Tyler Perry’s films have so far dwelt in their own niche universe, if you can call being one of the biggest and most consistent indie box office draws “niche.” They don’t do a lot of international sales, and they don’t get screened for critics. It’s proven unnecessary — they’re aimed at and intended for a sorely underserved audience who’s responded in droves, and not because of a particular critical endorsement.
But Perry’s newest film “For Colored Girls,” adapted from Ntozake Shange’s 1975 Tony Award-nominated play “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf,” finds the director venturing outside of his established comfort zone.
It looks… what’s the word? ARTY. As it should — Shange’s play consists of a series of poems recited by a cast of seven women named only for the colors they’re wearing, and while they appear to have been given names, along with male co-stars to act against, in the film, it remains obviously more abstract source material than the average stage-to-screen adaptation.
The cast includes Loretta Devine, Whoopi Goldberg, Janet Jackson, Anika Noni Rose, Jill Scott, Kerry Washington, Thandie Newton and others. The prime awards season release slot would seem to indicate that this Perry production, at least, has hopes for critical support.
Lionsgate will release “For Colored Girls” on November 5th.