Yesterday, I logged on to Twitter to discover everyone talking about the same thing: a film titled Loqueesha, shot and set in my native city of Detroit. Considering the way everyone seemed baffled by the film, I figured I had to give the trailer a watch. And…my God. I’m still trying to wrap my head around writer/director/star Jeremy Saville’s vanity project.
The gist is this: Joe (Saville) is a Detroit bartender who knows how to read everyone. Everything he says is genius, blunt, and astute. Unfortunately, he can’t hold a steady job giving advice because all those careers are going to those pesky minorities! When his gifted son is accepted to private school, and he needs to find a way to earn the money to support him, Joe comes up with a wacky scheme: what if he were to pretend to be a loud, opinionated black woman – one who speaks with the exact same voice with no variations, but uses very specific slang vernacular. As he realizes the entire city is I love with Loqueesha and her tell-it-like-it-is attitude, Joe realizes that society needs to look beneath the surface to realize that white men are just as good as black women.
I…I just can’t. Who thought this would be a good idea? Who thought this would be a good idea in 2019? Why does he speak with the same voice as Loqueesha as he does for Joe? Why are there so many shots of African-American women going, “Uh huh, you go girl!?” Why is there a scene where he tells a woman contemplating suicide to jump? Why is this scene presented as a good idea? Why is the tagline so generically dumb as “Sometimes you have to become somebody else to find out who you really are?” It’s just all so baffling. I described this movie to my father and his first response, without hesitation, was, “Didn’t that movie come out in 1986 called Soul Man? And wasn’t it extremely racist even then?” This is honestly one of the most baffling movies I’ve ever seen. I can only imagine that Saville watched Tootsie and thought “Yeah! I can do that! Guys do have to go to such lengths to get jobs these days!” However, there are a few key differences between Tootsie and Loqueesha: a) in Tootsie, Dustin Hoffman’s Michael Dorsey is not unemployed because women keep taking his jobs, he’s unemployed because he’s an assh*le in need of change; b) the main arc of Tootsie is that Hoffman’s Michael slowly learns the effects of sexism in everyday life, including the ways he himself had been sexist; and c) Tootsie is actually funny. The only comedy that can be found in the entire Loqueesha trailer is the comedy of, “Oh, so they’re really doing this? This isn’t a clip from, like, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia? Or Bamboozled 2, written and directed by Spike Lee? I just…I don’t know what to say. I really shouldn’t have written this article, as I don’t want to give this dumbass or his film any sort of attention, and I really shouldn’t post the trailer. But I’m doing both anyway, because you, the movie-going audience, deserves to know that this movie exists, and that there are still people within Hollywood who are out of touch. I will not be posting the date, I guess you can Google it if you want. Watch at your own risk.