We’re back here at LMR with what we hope to be a much more regularly scheduled show!!
Beauty Shop is a movie that I discovered because Queen Latifa is one of my favorite (I mean like FAVORITE) actresses. It’s a romantic comedy and one of the reasons I find it to be an important movie, even if it isn’t the best movie, is because it reminds us that love isn’t just for skinny white women and muscle bound white men out of a Nicholas Sparks’ book-turned-movie. Whenever Queen Latifa stars in a film there is barely, if any mention of her weight being a negative aspect of who she is, even when it’s her character who feels insecure about herself.
Beauty Shop casts aside physical insecurity for the insecurity you and I face every day where our dreams are concerned. She wants to own her own beauty shop (heh, heh, get the title?) but she also needs a high paying job so that she afford the tuition for her daughter’s private schooling (she’s a musical genius don’t you know?). It is this reason, and only this reason, that Latifa’s Gina Norris stays in her demanding (and demeaning) position at Jorge’s (Kevin Bacon, OOOOH!) shop. At least that is until Jorge underestimates just how much Gina does to make his salon a success (he can’t even operate the soaking station’s extendable faucet for Christ’s sake~!).
This leads us into the meat of our plot as Gina strikes it out on her own and reminds us that dream’s aren’t enough (credit is better) to get what you want out of life (even if you’re a really hard worker mind you). Hoping to get a bank loan because of her confidence in her skills and the effort she put into her prospectus, she is forced to use her skills as a hair stylist to forcibly make over the frumpy personal banker so that she’ll see that Gina is a safe investment (in what is definitely one of the most edge of your seat scenes I’ve ever seen…. Alright that’s not entirely true…).
Queen Latifa and Kevin Bacon aren’t our only actors, though, granted many of you will think they’re the most notable. Mena Suvari (American Pie) and Andie MacDowell (Sex, Lies, and Videotape) both play quirky customers who follow Gina to her shop because her hair crack is just that awesome. Alfre Woodard (Desperate Housewives, Take the Lead), Golden Brooks (The Game), Alicia Silverstone (Clueless, the film not the show), and Bryce Wilson (….a rapper I suppose?) all play some of her just-as-quirky hairstylists. Each of them bring a unique flare to the movie when they’re onscreen and seeing them interact in that sacred hairstylist-customer relationship reminds me why it’s A-okay to spend a crap ton of money to get a cheaper therapy session than it would be from your neighborhood psychologist.
This movie is a spin-off of the Barbershop duology and I won’t lie, I prefer this one to those ones.