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The Watermelon Woman
The Watermelon Woman
Actors: V.S. Brodie, Lisa Marie Bronson, Cheryl Clarke, Emmy Collins, Irene Dunye
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, African American Cinema
UR     2000     1hr 33min

Cheryl Dunye's debut feature is as controversial as it is sexy and funny. Cheryl is a twenty-something black lesbian working as a clerk in a video store while struggling to make a documentary about Fae Richards, an obscure...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: V.S. Brodie, Lisa Marie Bronson, Cheryl Clarke, Emmy Collins, Irene Dunye
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, African American Cinema
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Gay & Lesbian, Drama, African American Cinema
Studio: First Run Features
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 05/09/2000
Original Release Date: 03/05/1997
Theatrical Release Date: 03/05/1997
Release Year: 2000
Run Time: 1hr 33min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 3
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Widening the Spectrum: Multiple Issues, Multiple Minorities
(5 out of 5 stars)

"As a lesbian film student of color, I find inspiration in Cheryl Dunye's vision. "The Watermelon Woman" seamlessly weaves together the issues of race relations, ethnic and lesbian identity construction, and prevailing oppression in all its subtleties. Setting up the film as a pseudo-documentary of an aspiring filmmaker's research on a Black lesbian actor from the thirties counterpoints a historical context of these issues, with its modern manifestations. An excellent film from a multiple-minority perspective. The acting may call for more training, but the successful execution of the issues excuses the sometimes contrived reading of lines. The portrayal of Guin Turner's naively ignorant character (a white woman who prefers men and women of African-descent) was well written and played. The film illustrated race relations on many sides of the issue -- the relations between people of the same race and cross-racial relations. Funny, as well as socially valuable, "The Watermelon Woman" is one of those rare films that reaffirm my expectations for film: not just as a form of entertainment or art, but as a tool for social commentary."
Excellent portrayal of the artistic process...
Miss D. AwesomePants | Hoboken, NJ United States | 02/10/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This movie is the story of a woman that wishes to become a film-maker. She becomes obsessed with an actress from the 30's - and begins searching for information on her, and films a documentary in the process. Soon, the lead's love life begins paralleling the actress that she is researching.This film can be viewed on several levels... as a (lesbian) love story... a romantic comedy, if you will. It can be viewed as a story about African American women finding their place in an urban society. Or it can be viewed as a study of the creative process.The love story bored me (luckily both Cheryl Dunye and Guineviere Turner are both really hot!)... but the exploration and struggle of the artistic journeys of Cheryl was very interesting. Any film-maker, artist, photographer, etc. would enjoy this movie... and it should not be dismissed as another silly, unrealistic lesbian love story."
A Trip Out Film! | usa | 07/23/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This Film is very Creative& Shows The World&Lives of Lesbian deals with Race,Sex&Class Issues.i happen to catch it on B.E.T Starz's&it kept my showed the flaws of The Women&everyday struggles&Battles they went thru.I wish HBO,Showtime,etc...would also show this film for a wider audience.because this Film Balance's out alot of's a trip out film!"
Miss D. AwesomePants | 02/04/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"A film that shows the neurotic side of some lesbians. A film that proves to me that I am not the only lesbian in the US who would doggedly pursue any tidbit of information on a famous person I presume to be a lesbian. Hey, I'm not proud of it....but it is certainly calming to know there are more of us out there. Simple dialogue and charming characters made this a very enjoyable movie."