Tasha Smith (Photo by Mariette Monpierre)

 

*There is no doubt that as a writer, filmmaker and producer, Tyler Perry is making movies that make African Americans proud.  Through his movies, he is painting a picture of the human landscape sketching a portrait of the humorous as well as the serious side of a race of people.

Of course he takes poetic license with the character Medea whom he first showcased in off-Broadway theaters across the nation and whom he informed this interviewer, would continue to live as long as the people want her.  

However, it is his intent to grow as an artist and therefore he hopes folks will allow for that growth and permit him to stretch out his creative process in ever varying and artistic directions.  

He is planning on bringing Colored Girls to the screen in the future and other projects that will take him out of the dress and into the annals of film making.  Thus, this journalist is certain Tyler Perry has the support of all the people in his ever evolving film quest.

“Why Did I Get Married Too,” is the ninth of Tyler’s films and the second of the “Why Did I Get Married” series.  

“This is the only film I have ever written where I thought I had more to say.  I loved working with the cast and with this particular theme,”explained the evolving filmmaker.  “There are so many stories that have not been told that need to be told as it pertains to African American life.  It’s wonderful when I get letters from people who say they saw the movie and it helped them with their personal relationship problems,” stated Perry.  “My next movie will be “Colored Girls…”  I try to write about and choose movies that speak to me and to others.  As black people, we come in all shades.  I want our children to recognize this and see that we are strong, powerful and diverse people.  My intent is to represent who we are as a people so our children see us as powerful and know that we are OK,” continued Tyler who starred Janet Jackson, Jill Scott, Sharon Leal, Tasha Smith and the extraordinary Cicely Tyson as the wives in his movie.  Malik Yorba, Lamman Rucker, Richard T. Jones, Tyler Perry and veteran actor Louis Gossett, Jr., star as the “Why Did I Get Married Too, husbands.

Janet Jackson stretched her acting chops in this movie and gave an extraordinary performance.  She was filming when her brother Michael died and perhaps this was the catalyst that drove her to express some powerful emotions, especially in a scene where Janet’s character, the always in control Patricia, loses her cool and vents her rage and pain against her husband Gavin in a way that spoke to a depth of feel which exposed levels of sadness, pent up emotion and pain.

“It was such fun doing this movie.  It was like taking a Bahama vacation on Tyler Perry, although we could have done without the moth bats,” said Tasha White, whose character Angela was often played over the top but supplied the movie’s humor. “People might not know this, but I started off as a comedian.  And Michael Jai White and I have been friends for years.  I don’t think Tyler even knew that when he first cast us in our roles,” remarked Tasha about Michael Jai White who plays her henpecked husband.

Veteran actress Cicely Tyson talked about her cameo role as Ola whose 50 year marriage to Porter (Louis Gossett, Jr) is filled with all the beauty, pain and  unconditional love that keeps an enduring marriage bound together.  “I think that young black people do not realize how the world views our race. Often movies depict “us”in a negative light.  They show us talking a certain way and walking a certain way and behaving a certain way, that in reality has nothing to do with who we are as a people.  But that is the picture people around the world get of us who have had no experience with us as a race.  That is why movies like Why Did I Get Married Too are important.  These kinds of movies are essential so that  people throughout the world get to know who we are, what we are and why we exist in this world,” stated Tyson.

“Why Did I Get Married, Too,” demonstrates that all races are invested in life and therefore sample the bitter, sweet, confusion, pain, love and craziness that comes with relationships.   In fact, we see Shelia (Jill Scott) go through a transformation and come into her own in “Why Did I Get Married Too,” demonstrating that women in abusive relationships can move beyond them and rebuild their lives.  And, in the process, rebuild self esteem while discovering their own inner strength.

This reviewer left “Why Did I Get Married, Too,” released nationwide by Lionsgate, with teary eyes since this movie is very invested in emotion.  Yet, there is a sense about this movie that there is more to be said about these complicated couples.  No, their story isn’t over yet.  Although, “Why Did I Get Married Too” does come with some unforeseen and dramatic surprises that change the scope of the relationship between these four couples forever.