Copyright 1995 ABC-CLIO. This review was taken from the ABC-CLIO Video Rating Guide for Libraries on CD-ROM, a 5-year compilation of over 8900 video titles and reviews, 1990-1994. For information regarding order VRGL CD-ROM, contact: ABC-CLIO, P.O. Box 1911, Santa Barbara, CA 93116-1911; 805-968-1911

This following text has been included in the UCB Media Resources Center Web site with the kind permission of the publishers.

Is a Long-Memoried Woman

  • Rating: ****
  • Audience: High School to Adult
  • Price: Public performance: $350.00
  • Date: Copyright 1990. Released 1991.
  • Descriptors: Blacks - History - Women.
  • Production Information: Live action, Stills. Produced by Ingrid Lewis. Color. 50 min.
  • Production Company: Yod Video
  • Available from: Women Make Movies 462 Broadway, 5th Floor New York, NY 10013 (212)925-0606
  • Cataloging: 811.5 Nichols, Grace||Afro-American women poets||Slavery - United States
  • Awards: International Film & TV Festival of New York Gold Award, 1990.
  • Print Entry #: 3:1619
  • Reviewer: Marilyn Payne Phillips

    A Gold Award winner at the International Film and Video Festival, I Is a Long-memoried Woman is a powerful and moving cinematic experience based on a collection of poems by Grace Nichols. This program by Frances-Anne Solomon is very successful at incorporating creative movement, archival photographs, and special effects to make a statement about the African slave woman's experience in a historical context. Men, primarily white, freely debased black women and black men were generally impotent - unable if not unwilling to be heroic. Nichols says, "The book is a celebration of the endurance, vitality, and spiritual strength of the black woman."

    The video is less articulate with its use of interview clips with Nichols. Her speech is halting, bound to earth in contrast to the soaring performances of the actresses and dancers. The choreography demonstrates strength, vitality, and an earthy, tongue-in-cheek angry humor when portraying the white slave owners in elaborate "white face" and period costumes.

    The review tape did have some sound problems two-thirds through the production; I hope that this is a fluke in an otherwise polished and professional program.

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