News: David Banner Gives Critical "Red Tails" Review, "My Criticisms Aside, It Is A Movie That Must Be Seen"

Monday, Jan 23, 2012 4:37PM

Written by Biz Jones

Southern rapper-turned-actor David Banner has given a full-length review of the new George Lucas-executive produced Red Tails film and pointed out while there are some faults, the movie is an overall success.

Banner pointed out the film's attempt to include an abundance of material and storylines slightly hurt its presentation.

"The gaps in the storyline and the lack of in-depth character development reflect the shear amount of material the director, writers and producers attempted to include in the film. Trying to cover the realities of war, incredible fight scenes, a love story, character nuances and the racial-political realities of the military in a two-hour movie is certainly challenging. The story of the Tuskegee Airmen themselves--their triumphs, their tragedies, their battles in combat and their battles at home--is too great a story to be condensed into a two-hour time frame. It is for this reason that Lucas himself is on record as saying that he plans to produce both a sequel (covering the experiences of the pilots after returning home) and a prequel (documenting their flight training at Tuskegee University) if Red Tails proves to be successful. In the end, the movie itself, though simplistic and at times "corny," was inspiring. The battle scenes were superb and the film certainly evoked emotion and identification with the airmen themselves. My criticisms aside, it is certainly a movie that MUST be seen, a movie that MUST be supported and a story that MUST be told." (Black Enterprise)

Despite a few issues, Banner said the movie's production as a whole is nothing less than a success.

"The box office reports are in for opening weekend and it's official, Red Tails can be declared a box office success, coming in second place over the weekend with over $19 million in ticket sales. The box office receipts point to several realities: First, and arguably most important, these numbers show that a big budget, dignified movie with a mostly Black cast can make money. Secondly, the success of a movie like Red Tails shows that a wide variety of images of the Black community can be embraced on film. Lastly, the efforts of Lucas himself are particularly instructive. Nearly a quarter century of rejection by every major studio in Hollywood was not enough to deter Lucas from his goal of providing "real heroes" for American teenagers--presumably Black teenagers." (Black Enterprise)

Red Tails fell just short of topping the weekend box office at No. 2.

The domestic box office enjoyed another strong weekend as Screen Gems' Underworld: Awakening and George Lucas' Red Tails topped the box office with $25.4 million and $19.1 million, respectively, driving revenues up by more than 30 percent despite wintery weather in the Midwest and East. Red Tails, about the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II, did far better than expected. Lucas spent 20 years pursuing the project, and recently revealed he couldn't get any studio to finance the film because of an all-black cast. He finally decided to put up the money himself, and spent $58 million on the production budget and another $35 in distribution costs. (Hollywood Reporter)

Prior to its release, movie critics highlighed Lucas' special effects as a strong selling point.

Even the sound of the planes whizzing by recalls the Phantom Menace's pod race. Say what you will about Lucas' tin ear, when the bearded one makes it visceral he's hard to top. Flying high above Europe, swooping and darting with an endless array of planes, the cutting style delivers a terrific sense of urgency. Better still, we're right alongside the pilots in the cockpit. As hectic as things get, we're never lost. This is how action should be done. A battle against the German's superior jet squad is the film's highlight. (E! Online)

Check out the Red Tails trailer below:

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