Welcome Message - From Filmmaker Tim Alexander

Welcome to the "Diary Of A Tired Black Man" Movie Blog. Please visit: www.tiredblackman.com for more info.

I created the "Tired Black Man" (TBM) Blog to focus on the impact this film has on people after viewing it.

Please share this blog with friends. Together we will change this world we live in (at least a little) - because change starts with you.

For Private Group Screenings or Speaking Engagements I can be contacted at 818-623-0057 or by email at tim@tiredblackman.com

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Good - Film Review - The Kansas City Star

‘Diary of a Tired Black Man’ is bound to raise some issues

Like pebbles dropped in still water, some movies create ripples that spread to cover the entire culture.

“Diary of a Tired Black Man” is one of those ripple-makers. Except it’s more like a hand grenade tossed in a toilet.

Tim Alexander’s super low-budget film, fresh to DVD this week, is nothing less than a messy, sincere and occasionally savage dissection of male/female relationships, particularly as experienced by African-Americans.

Once people catch on to this movie — and it’s only a matter of time — it should have a major sociological and cultural impact.

This is not to say that “Diary” is great art … just the right movie at the right time.

It began with a three-minute Internet short Alexander wrote and directed a couple of years back. In it a divorced black father named James (Jimmy Jean-Louis, the memory-stealing “Haitian” on TV’s “Heroes”) shows up at his former home to pick up his daughter for a weekend.

His ex, Tonya (Paula Lema), is waiting with several of her gal pals. They’re livid that James has shown up with his current girlfriend, a white woman who waits outside in his car.

In response to their insults that he’s a typical black man and “too weak to deal with a strong black woman,” James announces that he’s not weak. He’s tired — tired of pointless fighting, tired of useless confrontations. He points out that he was faithful throughout the marriage, that he provided the luxurious home in which Tonya lives and that he’s never missed an alimony payment. Oh, and by the way, it’s nobody’s business whom he dates.

In short, he silences the angry women.

“Tired Black Man”— the short that opens this DVD package — became a viral sensation. Subsequently Alexander traveled to several cities showing the short to men and women and videotaped hours of their reactions and comments. Later he wrote and directed several additional scenes depicting pivotal moments from James and Tonya’s marriage.

All these elements have been loosely thrown together for the DVD package, a provocative mashup of fiction, documentary and cinematic essay.

If you really want the full experience, watch “Diary” with Alexander’s commentary track, in which he codifies his ideas about ABWS — Angry Black Woman Syndrome. There’s an epidemic of ABWS, he claims, and it’s threatening the very soul of African-American culture.

Alexander — he says he’s been a victim of ABWS — acknowledges that many women have reason to be angry after being abused and used by their men. (He also chides women for choosing “bad” boys when there are plenty of decent guys out there.) But so many women have become so angry that they cannot appreciate even good, upstanding black men, he maintains. And angry women rarely enjoy lasting relationships.

Some of Alexander’s comments are sure to stir controversy:

“Women will get into another woman’s relationship in a finger snap.”

Women “will attack like pack animals. They all come and circle around you and rip your flesh off.”

The older women get, according to Alexander, the more self-aware they become and the less likely they are to blame everything on men: “The second and third marriages are more successful not because we found someone better, but because we found ourselves.”

Fascinating insight into human relationships? Or just genteel misogyny?

Arguing those points is what makes “Diary of a Tired Black Man” so interesting. Expect “Tired Black Man” discussion groups to spring up in church basements and at community centers. Alexander — a fashion photographer who has never made a film before — even provides a “cuss-free” version on this DVD so that it can be enjoyed by those who cannot tolerate rude talk.

Rude talk or not, expect “Diary of a Tired Black Man” to raise voices and blood pressure.

Can a movie be a culture changer? If so, this is a prime candidate.

Posted on Wed, Feb. 04, 2009 10:15 PM



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