A Haitian Romantic Comedy Movie Worth Seeing

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A Haitian Romantic Comedy Movie Worth Seeing


Richard J. Arens is not too bad of a director. To my knowledge, he has helmed three movies thus far: Alelouya (which I thought was hilarious), and My Name Is (which I thought was monstrous), and of course Show Kola. It seems that following Show Kola Arens has gone to make Haiti Cherie: Wind of Hope. The trailer for that movie, doesn’t exactly look enticing.

Show Kola, his second released film, on the other hand, definitely deserves a look. It’s one of few ensemble cast Haitian movies that I’ve seen where one doesn’t lose sight of the characters, as the movie progresses. The movie’s 87 minutes or so, are divided (perhaps not too equally) between four friends: Kerby, Theo, Bob, and Donkey Mix.

Bob is a university psychology major with mommy issues. His mother abandoned the family some years ago, leaving his father in a catatonic state, and Bob himself in a permanent woman-hating mode. He’s romancing Barbara, his father’s goddaughter half-heartedly, but his eyes are elsewhere, roaming, and seeking some unsuspected females to devour.

Arens assembled some of the Haitian movie industry’s best young talents, and up-and-coming talents. In terms of established talent, Georges-Henri Beauvoir—who we have not seen since he starred as François in La Peur D’Aimer —is Kerby (actually he appeared for like 5 seconds in La Rebelle in the birthday party scene). Kerby is so bent on impressing the neighborhood useless pretty girl Christelle, that he misses the lovey-dovey stares and intentions of the long suffering Ingride.

Paul-Henry Athis—who made an impressive debut in La Face de L’Ombre, and went on to star in Les Couleurs de la Dignité— is Théo, the jealous boyfriend to Lourdes-Milla, played by the brilliant Nathalie Ambroise (of La Rebelle fame). Handy Tibert, who is one of the best young actors in the Haitian film industry (Barikad, La Victime), gave a credible performance as Donkey Mix, a deejay (the movie’s title is actually taken from the character’s radio show) who is in love with his boss Supplice (Marie-Yolène Félisma), but can’t bring himself to face the intimidating career woman.

Newcomers Rachéle Abraham (Christelle), and Francila Saintilus (Ingride), Marjorie François (Barbara) round off the well-put together cast. There were others too who appeared, however briefly, but who still made an impression Fritz-Gérald Emmy (as the perverted rapper Jay-C), Aristène Posnel (as the chain-smoking Djomeka), and Maxime Moise, as the man whose estrangement from his wife has led him to an overall mental and physical decline. The director himself has a cameo in the movie, as a disabled radio personality, and Hughette F. St Fleur and Schudson Boursiquot have some marginal roles, while Reginald Lubin appears as himself. At one point, there was a trailer of the movie with the actress (J)Gessica Geneus playing one of the leads, but she must not have made the final cut, or perhaps dropped out of the movie.

Oh, well. On with the movie.

The couples, or potential couples all somehow manage to quarrel prior to Valentine’s Day. But in true romantic comedy fashion, all is mended in time for love to triumph. It was quite ridiculous for Arens to give Ambroise the same lines that she had in La Rebelle as the rebellious Lorraine Dubois (“Je te signalle que c’est mon anniversaire.”). Did he think that we wouldn’t notice? Is there a shortage in dialogue land?
Overall though, with Show Kola, it’s obvious that Arens was trying to do something different, in terms of story, in terms of experimenting with structure and style, and in those aspects, he certainly succeeded. The plot could have been stronger, but most of the resolutions had meat on them.

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ABOUT K. St FortK. St. Fort is the Editor and Founder of, well, Kreyolicious.com and wishes to give you a heartfelt welcome to her site. She loves to read, write, and listen to music and is fascinated by her Haitian roots, and all aspects of her culture. Speaking of music, she likes it loud, really, really loud. Like bicuspid valve raising-loud. Her other love are the movies. She was once a Top 50 finalist for a student screenwriting competition, encouraging her to continue pounding the pavement.She has completed several screenplays, with Haiti as the backdrop, one of which tackles sexual abuse in an upper middle class Haitian family, while another has child slavery as its subject. She is currently completing another script, this time a thriller, about two sisters who reunite after nearly 10 years of separation. A strong believer in using films to further educational purposes, and to raise awareness about important subjects, she has made it a point to write about social issues facing Haiti, and making them an integral part of her projects.She has interviewed such Haitian-American celebrities as Roxane Gay, Garcelle Beauvais, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Briana Roy, Karen Civil, and many, many more.And that’s her writing this whole biographical sketch. She actually thinks writing about herself in the third person is cute.MY WEBSITEKreyolicious ™: kree-ohl-lish-uh s: Surely an adjective…the state of being young, gorgeous, fine and utterly Haitian. Kreyolicious.com™, the hub for young, upwardly mobile Haitian-Americans, is akin to a 18th Century cultural salon but with a Millennium sensibility–an inviting lair, where we can discuss literature, music, problems facing the community, and everything on the side and in-between.Kreyolicious is the premier lifestyle, culture and entertainment blog and brand of the hip, young, trend-oriented, forward thinking Haitian-American. It’s the definite hot spot to learn more about Haiti our emerging identity as a people, and explore our pride and passion about our unique and vibrant culture. Within the site’s pages, Kreyolicious.com is going to engage you, empower you, and deepen your connection to everything Haitian: the issues, the culture, our cinema, the history, our cuisine, the style, the music, the worldwide community.Make yourself at home in my cultural salon. If you’re looking to learn more about Haiti, Kreyolicious.com invites you to board this trolley on a journey–on our journey. For me too, it is a process, a non-ending cultural odyssey. If you’re already acculturated, I can certainly learn something from you. We can learn from one other, for certain.With my site, Kreyolicious.com I look forward to inspiring you, to enriching you, and to participating alongside of you, in the cultural celebration. And being utterly kreyolicious.How do you wear your kreyoliciousness? On your sleeves, like I do?Kreyoliciously Yours,Your girl K. St. Fort,Ahem, follow me elsewhere!

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