Released: 21st May
Seen: 29th May
Earlier this month a trailer was brought to the attention of the internet for a movie titled Loqueesha, a film by alleged comedian Jeremy Saville that was about a white man pretending to be a black woman in order to try and get a job. This trailer blew the hell up on social media because everyone had to know just who the hell would release such a film. It got such sweeping negative attention that the original uploader of the YouTube video ended up deleting the video from their account. There was controversy galore, not only because the trailer was obviously racist and unfunny as all hell but because it came out that a claim in the trailer that the film played at the San Luis Obispo Film Festival turned out to be a lie because the film was actually pulled before the festival and therefore never screened once. So, you’d think with all this obscene negative reaction to the trailer that the smart thing to do would be to lie low, never release the film or maybe dump it out on VOD in a year or so when the heat died down but no one involved in this film ever claimed to do the smart thing so here we are, not even a month later and the film was put on Amazon Prime. I will now talk about it for a large amount of time in order to protect you from what is in this film… I’m watching it, so you literally never have to.
Loqueesha (GOD, I ACTUALLY HAVE TO TALK ABOUT THIS THING!?) follows Joe (Jeremy Saville), a bartender who, like all bartenders, gives out free advice to drunken louts who have nothing better to do than to sit in an empty bar in the middle of the day when the bar is clearly closed to the general public so they can film. ANYWAY, one day a woman called Rachel (Tiara Parker) comes in and gets the same generic advice that everyone else gets and believes Joe to be some kind of advice-giving genius. Armed with this knowledge, she suggests that Joe try out for a radio show but he gets rejected. Upon rereading the advertisement, he notices that they would prefer someone who’s a woman or minority and so, therefore, he thinks it’s perfectly acceptable to put on a stereotypical black woman voice and try out for the show again. Naturally, because this movie clearly takes place in the upside down, he gets the job and now must do a show on the radio as Loqueesha, doling out advice to people… oh, and at one point he appears to be actually possessed by the spirit of Loqueesha who pops out randomly. Oh god, this movie is a real thing that really happened, someone really sat down and wrote this script, hired actors, built sets and actually took time out of their lives to make this movie exist in our reality.
So, we all know this movie is racist trash. We knew that from the trailer, from the concept, from the phrase “White man pretending to be a black woman”. We all remember Soul Man, this idea not only doesn’t age well, but it’s also objectively a bad idea that bad people have. Now we all agree that this is an awful idea, why does the main character have it? Why are we witnessing this obvious moron do an obviously moronic thing? I mean, he’s basically the Mrs Doubtfire of racism so let’s just ask if his reason is as understandable as “It’s literally the only way I’ll be able to see my kids”… NOPE, the reasoning is that his awful ex-wife, who was completely right to divorce him, wants to send their child to a school that costs about 13 grand a term and this is something that would clearly happen. I mean, it’s not like divorces happen in courts and couples with children have rules regarding things like school that are enforced by judges- OH WAIT! Yeah, this isn’t a judge ordering our hapless moron to come up with the money, his ex-wife (EX! FORMER! NO LONGER NEEDS TO LISTEN TO HER WITHOUT A LAWYER PRESENT!) just wants to send her kid to a stupid fancy school that the kid doesn’t even really care about that much and therefore, let’s put on the racist voice and do a racism… this is a bad reason for the plot to start because of all the obvious reasons.
Then there’s the dialogue which is somewhere between “Racist caricatures” and “Are you actually kidding me, people wrote this? This script wasn’t just written by cats walking over keyboards?” We’re talking black women who say to Joe, a white man, “You’re a better black woman than I am” or a suicidal person calling in saying that they’re going to jump from a bridge and the instant response is “OK then, enjoy your jump”. A human being, a member of our species, wrote that. None of the lines work, none of the ‘jokes’ work. Even the moment when someone finally calls him out on the obvious racist bullshit doesn’t work because this script is bad and doesn’t understand how people work. Also, that scene where someone calls him out? Yeah, that person ends up making out with him and going to bed with him literally moments after calling him a racist misogynist… because apparently, this man is irresistible to very stupid women. Every line of dialogue is painful and the delivery can’t save it, especially by our lead who has literally no sense of comedic timing or how to deliver a joke. Then again, he also wrote the damn thing, so why am I expecting him to actually know how jokes work?
No one in this movie knows how jokes work; no one knows how acting works. I understand that most of them are in this for the paycheck (which I have to assume was cashed BEFORE turning up just in case this was an elaborate scam) but how the hell did they think this was OK? So many people signed off on being a part of a movie that’s so objectively wrongheaded and don’t even try to act. Their characters are basically stereotypes (again, written by the lead actor, this isn’t a shock) and their performances are so bad that even community theatre wouldn’t accept this. Here’s how bad these characters are, the main villain of this movie? The black woman whose image accompanies this movie. TO MAKE THIS CLEAR, a movie where a white man pretends to be a black woman decided that the villain should be an actual black woman. That’s a decision that a person made that was signed off on by everyone involved because they wanted to get paid. On top of that, the actors don’t even really try to make the ‘jokes’ work, which I understand would be impossible because the ‘jokes’ in this movie are about as funny as being hit by a car, but at least you could try and work out where the joke was meant to be and make it work while reading the line. Honestly, the line readings are so awful that it makes me thankful that no one wasted good sound editing on this movie.
Not only is the sound editing awful, from bad mixing to a glorious moment of dubbing where two characters are clearly saying the word “iPhone” but they dubbed the word “Smart” in where the “I” should be, but the visual style of this film is ghastly. The set design looks worse than the sets I used to make for student films on a budget of nothing with two flaps they had at the school. The crap I assembled to try and pass a video class should NEVER look better than something in a professional (HA) film released by (alleged) professionals. The sets are awful, the lighting is awful, they can’t even colour correct the damn film properly because the main actor constantly looks like he has jaundice. It’s dull and lifeless which really lets the objective racism stand out. Did I mention how this shit is racist? Because I may have forgotten to mention it so, hang on
THIS FILM IS GODDAMN RACIST AS ALL HELL!
There, I feel better now.
Loqueesha is the antithesis of what a movie should be. I shouldn’t even call it a movie, it only gets that classification because it’s a sequence of moving images that are edited to create a piece of work that lasts 98 minutes and is, therefore, called a movie. It’s abysmal, appalling, awful, abominable, appalling, atrocious and that’s just the A’s. It has no purpose, it has no meaning, and it has nothing of value to offer. It tries to do this whole “You should be honest about yourself” thing, except that rings hollow because it’s literally being said by a man doing a racist caricature of a black woman. I genuinely thought I wouldn’t find a film that upset me more than I Spit On Your Grave: Déjà Vu but at least THAT film knew it was complete trash and never tried to be anything, this film (and the people who made it) seem to think there’s actually something redeeming here. There isn’t, it’s an unfunny waste of a film that will only be remembered because it provided the internet with a good punching bag for a month. Hell, I might not even put it on my worst list because that’s more attention than this film deserves. It’s a stupid badly made garbage fire and everyone who was involved in it, from the people who held the camera to the guy who delivered food to the set should feel ashamed for having unleashed this shit.