Da 5 Bloods
On the Record
I May Destroy You
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Support the Girls is one of those rare movies that is better the second or third time around. It sneaked up on me; I didn't see the curve coming, and on my first viewing, it seemed to lag ... but once Cubby fires Lisa, the film turns quickly. Masks start slipping. It's one character reveal after another, and little nagging thoughts kept popping up -- enough that I watched it again just to confirm my suspicions about how much foreshadowing had been going on. The answer: a lot, but the movie doesn't tip its hand early.
Regina Hall as Lisa is superb and is the narrative foundation around whom the film is built, but it's not until the final scene that we really understand the iron triangle of Lisa, Maci (Haley Lu Richardson) and Danyelle (Shana McHayle) that was the secret sauce of Double Whammies. And Cubby fired all of them. At the very end, the film could have jumped ahead a month or so and shown the going out of business scene.
"Slice of life" films may be tricky for theatrical productions, where the audience expects a narrative to build to a climax and a resolution in two hours, three at the max. But "slice of life" is where long-running television shows thrive, and Support the Girls would have been a fantastic pilot for a series with an ensemble cast worthy of a very long run. Of course, the tv pilot would have had to be plotted differently; too many people get fired in the movie. (Lisa fires two before Cubby fires the Big Three, and all five would be regulars in a series.) For a tv show you need to keep the cast around. But that's a manageable detail.
Every character in the core Double Whammies group -- employees and regular patrons alike -- has a couple of moments in which they show flashes of a complex underlying character, the kind of thing that a long-running tv show would build out over time. We are "introduced" to Officer Dominguez, for example, when Lisa tells the new trainees that a lot of police officers are regulars, and Maci, in her bubble-headed ditz mode, giggles that Officer Dominguez is a cutie. That creates a set of expectations -- but then we actually meet Officer Dominguez, who is splendidly professional and tactful in dealing with the burglar in the duct; we then see him as a sober, respectful patron; and he is a rock in the chaos scene when Maci and Danyelle kick off their rebellion. He is a protector, one of the adults in the room, and a friend.
So is Bobo, an obscure sideline figure cracking one-liners from her booth early in the movie, but another protector in the crunch. And one should notice that none of the regular Double Whammies group are at all surprised when Bobo rises to the occasion in a moment of crisis; they already know her.
The professor? He's a completely comic figure, certainly -- he can't be otherwise given the age difference in his secret relationship -- but he's an elderly gentleman (emphasis on "gentleman"), probably a lonely widower, who had been a professor and a lawyer, who steps forward when one of the girls needs legal assistance, and who we learn at the end is a "really nice man" who treats his much younger romantic interest really nicely as well. And she would know -- because by the end of the movie we realize that Maci isn't a bubble-headed ditz at all, but a natural sweetheart with her head screwed on straight who knows exactly what she's doing, chocolate milk and all. It's no accident that the film opens with Lisa crying in her car and Maci, the first to arrive, pecking at the window and comforting her boss. Here's betting that Maci is always the first to arrive, and she probably closes the place too. (Haley Lu Richardson is brilliant at acting in the background; she's one of the best scene stealers in the business today. She and Regina Hall are a terrific pair and I'd love to see them work together again.)
Go on down the list. The whole core group would be excellent series regulars in a long-running show. Even Cubby, terrible boss that he is, is obviously a deeply unhappy man, trapped somewhere he doesn't want to be, with a backstory to be unpacked. If this were a tv show, I'm betting that he'd be a sympathetic character by season three. Part of me wishes that this project had been picked up by one of the streaming networks for that purpose.
Support the Girls is worth a watch. To appreciate it, watch it a second time.
I watched this movie right after watching a Judd Apatow comedy about another spoiled white boy who can't manage to grow up. This was a refreshing reminder of what real problems look like and what it takes to get through them. Inspiring.
Worst movie I've seen that I can remember
This movie finished as it started, pretty much having gone nowhere, nothing significant happened and whatever point it was trying to make, it clearly never got across to me. Waste of time
I've been to Hooters and Twin Peaks, so this was a great peek in to a 24 of a working girl and her supporting crew. A drama that is special in it's foreshadowed narrative, to where Murphy's Law is applied to perfection.
Feels strange to call this movie a comedy yet it is one.
This is a great movie about a group of coworkers who work in a restaurant and share a bunch of struggles together. It's loosely plotted and focuses on character over story.
This movie probably was a nice idea but it just didn't work for me. Only the main character was sympathetic. And I really couldn't make out what was happening and what the actors were saying with their Southern American accents, speaking and mumbling. I was really grateful when it finally ended. I am sorry to say but it was one of the worst movies I have ever seen. I should have walked out but being British with a stiff upper lip I stuck it out to the bitter end. I could have joined in with their final screams.