Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Support "Pelo Malo" at a theatre near you

The acknowledgement that natural hair is beautiful isn't just a battle being waged in these here United States - it's also a battle being fought around the world. The issue of natural hair and how it so often intersects with race, class and gender is the subject of "Pelo Malo" (bad hair).

The  movie profiles a nine-year-old Venezuelan boy's efforts to straighten his curly hair for school pictures. The movie is now being shown in:

  • Santa Fe, Argentina
  • Mexico City, Mexico
  • San Diego
  • Miami
  • Houston
  • Madrid, Spain
  • Rome, Italy
  • Torino, Italy
  • Vancouver, Canada

It's more than just about curly hair.

It's an important story that needs to be told -- this time by Venezuelan director Mariana Rondón,  through the eyes of a 9-year-old boy as he seeks to loosen his curls to look more like his idol, Justin Bieber. The boy's father is Black and his mother, who is light skinned, isn't having it and worries that he may be gay.

Yes, the movie is about more than just hair straightening; it's about what is deemed beautiful or socially acceptable -- and how those intertwine with many other issues.

Blacks in the U.S. aren't the only ones fighting the curly hair "fight."

It's an international issue -- and the struggle is real, especially among our brothers and sisters in the Caribbean and Latin America, who may not have access to the same products or support that we do in the U.S.

The movie has already won several awards, including a top prize at the San Sebastian Film Festival, as it seeks to expose racism, colorism and hair prejudice among Venezuelans.

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