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Fresh Black Girls: Angela Bassett!

31 March 2008 14 Comments

The other night I was watching What’s Love Got To Do With It?, a favorite of mine since high school. After over 20 viewings, every nuance of Angela Bassett’s performance still impresses me. In fact, if Angela Bassett were white she’d have star power along the lines of Julia Roberts, and if you don’t agree then you should pack your things and leave this blog. Homegirl can ACT, and she does so always, under any condition necessary. She is our go-to girl for first class acting and sure should be after almost twenty years of experience (and for those of you who know that I’m a sucker for the Ivy League thing, she spent seven years at Yale in the Af-Am Studies and Drama departments). Angela Bassett is our go-to girl for first-class acting, which also makes her the poster girl for “when bad movies happen to great actors.” Waiting to Exhale? Ok. Vampire in Brooklyn? Yipes. In fact, what inspired me to FBG her were the reviews I read of Meet The Browns, which all noted her exceptional performance in the midst of perfectly acceptable (and not much more) black film. Perhaps because there simply aren’t enough roles out there for her she feels obligated to bless us with her gifts and thereby ends up conjuring that episode of Good Times where the Evans family shines up Ned The Wino and props him up on the sofa so that Florida can win some “Housekeeping in the Hood” award. She just sets the bar so consistently that no one else can keep up, and I have to love her for it. To really tie the noose around the neck of black cinema, she even played Betty Shabazz TWICE (in Malcom X and Panther), and Betty Shabazz has only been depicted in four movies. She also authentically played Katherine Jackson and Rosa Parks. Sacred black entertainment stuff – I mean really, what more can anyone do to immortalize our icons onscreen? And, guess who turns 50 this year but is still super fly and tight with arms that I aim for while on the weight machine trying to turn my grandma guns into something tank-top worthy? On another note, I love that she’s always with her man Courtney B. Vance – another veteran actor – genuine black-love style and you KNOW it’s for real. Just pure black beauty and radiance. If you feel me, please comment by cosigning on her freshness.


  • Malcolm said:

    There is no justice when you have white actresses starring in big-budget Hollywood movies with not even half the talent of Angela. Although I am not a big Tyler Perry fan, I do applaud him for creating works that help to keep some of Black Hollywood employed.

    When I saw Angela Bassett in “Vampire In Brooklyn”, all I could say was “Why?” Even though it didn’t cost me anything (I used to get free rentals when I worked at Blockbuster), I was still mad for wasting a freebie on that mess!

  • dara said:

    and Courtney Vance is FINE!

  • La Diva Sim said:

    Angie B is so very fierce. She continues to set the bar even when roles worthy of her are shriveling up. You sure did her justice with this post!

  • Aaliyah said:

    so, so fresh. so sad to see her in “meet the browns”, but she does have twins to feed so i understand. sigh.

  • Lola Gets said:

    I had an opportunity to sneak into Meet the Browns for free this past weekend. I went in, looked up at the screen, looked back at the moviewatchers, and got the hell out of there! I did not wanna see that hot mess, even if it didnt cost me squat!

    I do think Angela is a great actress and I wish there were more worthy roles available to an actress of her caliber.


  • Qucifer said:

    AB is absolute royalty I love love love some of her

  • A.S.K. said:

    I co-sign on her black-love style. Love the names she chose for her twins.

    But as an actress? I’ll pass.

    She is completely one-note. Furious Style’s wife is the same as Tina Turner is the same as the-woman-who-set-fire-to-her-man’s-clothes is the same as Betty Shabazz…
    She’s got the sacred roles down cold. But where’s the range? She gets props just because she plays righteous characters?
    I am completely underwhelmed by watching her in film after film after film, always with the hard jaw, the tight smile, the…ACTING. I never see her character. I always just see Angela Bassett.

  • Stacy said:

    i LOVE angela bassett… and its so true that she doesn’t get the recognition she deserves. where is her big budget “mainstream” movie? where is her oscar win?

  • pjazzypar said:

    Amgela Bassett is quite underrated. She should have won the Oscar for “What’s Love Got To Do With It”, but alas, she is not white and that makes a big difference. She still wants to act so at almost 50 (the girl looks good though) she has been relegated to accepting roles that are beneath her. Alfre Woodard is another actor who falls into this category, too much talent and not enough good roles. What’s a sister to do?

  • aj said:

    She has always been one of my favorites. I can’t believe she’s 50 – wow….I need to get to the gym…I want to be like her when I grow up!

  • beforethemayflower said:

    I never see her character. I always just see Angela Bassett.

    Probably the result of typecasting and not being offered roles that will showcase the full range of her talent.

  • A.S.K. said:


    But what IS the full range of her talent? How do we know if she always plays the same role?

  • Anonymiss said:

    I’d love to see her in some indie flicks.

  • Izzy said:

    Didnt her and Court break up? Let’s do an update on how much more FBG she is from exhaling another trifling wolf in good man clothing. She’s also one of the most stunning faces in the world, look at them cheek bones! work qween

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