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“Homecoming: A film By Beyoncé”: Black Culture Congratulating Itself

I have real problems with pride in culture heritage. It hits me as inverted racism. People may be affected by where they are born but more in the sense that if Einstein had been born to Sudanese bedoins in the Sahara desert, he would have never amounted to a thing. I see no reason to take either pride or no pride in your cultural heritage. It has nothing to do with you. Beyoncé… I loved her circa through 4 to Lemonade, but then her self-righteous smugness began to get on my nerves.

First there was the Lemonade concert at Citifield, where she was excellent, true, but it was freezing cold, she didn’t get on stage till 945pm and spent her (excellent –here) show and then couldn’t stop jabbering about how great women (aka: herself) is: “All women are strong” is not anything, it is nonsense on the face of it. IT ISN’T TRUE. It is sexism, and not against men but against women,.

Equally, while I can see why Bey may connect with African culture to a degree, once you begin implying that it gives you some form of superiority I have to backa way. Bey may well be superior… but if she is, her blackness is incidental.

So anyway, I saw half of the Citifield gig, and then, after spending a fortune on tickets for the Bey and Jey show last year at Metlife, it rained and rained and rained and I never even made it there and even if I had, they didn’t go on stage till 1130pm and even if they had…  I saw em together in 2014 (here) and concluded : “Musically the show was ok to not ok, but the duo as people with their conspicuous consumption and tone deaf snottiness are so horrible,I can’t stand em. It’s like they gave Mickey Mouse’s role to McScrooge… most drugs will kick in if you give them enough chance and in the end this was a pointless exercise in megalomania and adrenalin dope pushing…”

Am I done? I could get into Bey’s 215 “Global Citizen” gig and more… but… you get the idea.

On record, Lemonade was a masterpiece and Everything Is Love most certainly wasn’t.

Any problems that might imply have to be put aside for Netflix’s excellent “Homecoming”. Just a concert film with some backstage stuff and a lot of huffing and puffing, if yu can get past everything to its roots, this is he Coachella 2018 performance, beautifully filmed, beautifully executed. A cast of, well over 50 dances, a crowd in the tens of thousands lose their shit, and Bey manages to convey the high wattage superpowers that she doesn’t have as much of any more.

The dancing is great, the Pan Africanism is great, the songs are amongst her best and the Destiny Child reunion is a great deal of fun. She is electrifying while she watch her even if she seems to be losing her lustre while you watch. Incidentally, the Frankie Beverly and Maze cover on the album (available everywhere) is one of the best moments of the evening. And if Beyoncé is gonna have a hard time after the sunk like a stone Jay Z collaboration, she is going out in style. It was all that stuff everybody wrote that it was, and that’s coming from a former fan. All her self congratulations is a drag and unnecessary (whoever does it, except early Jay Z, it has reeked of self-doubt. Also, the Blue Ivy duet is nauseating. and all we get of “Hold Up” is 46 seconds -hold up indeed. But let’s forgive her because if this is not her last hurrah, it is surely her last hurrah this decade.

Grade: B+

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