Hybrid-Documentary to Unlock Complexities of Black Women’s Hair

Friday, November 15th, 2013

hair13u-2-webI was very pleased when I saw an article in the New York Daily News about first-time film maker, Rhadames Julian, making a hybrid-documentary to untangle the experiences black women have had with chemical relaxers, perms and other processes to change the look and texture of their locks.

What exactly is a hybrid-documentary? Honestly I am not sure. But before I saw Chris Rock’s “Good Hair” I was ambivalent about going natural. After viewing the film my mind was made up. So I support any film, stage play or series of photos that highlight black women going natural and maintaining the texture they were born with.

In the article Julian said;

“I want my film to make people think. What I’m saying is, hey, take a leap of faith and go back to your natural state, and see what happens.”

The Puerto Rican born and current Harlem resident along with his four-person team began working on the project in March. In the film titled, “Follicle: People of color, Identity and the Barriers That Lie in Between” he interviews women from South Africa and the U.S.

So far Julian raised $4,000 but needs at least $350,000 to see the project through. Julian blames commercialism, high profiled celebrities with straight weaves and mainstream hair ads for the reason some black women shy away from their natural hair.

“Hair and identity,” Julian says “are intertwined, and he plans to combine fiction and non-fiction techniques to make his points, in slightly more serious fashion than comedian Chris Rock did in “Good Hair.”

“I believe the first thing we have to do collectively to get to a better place is to accept the way we look first.”

I couldn’t agree more. I often wish we loved ourselves more or weren’t taught to think our natural state is unattractive. But all of that is wishful thinking now. Moving forward positive images about our hair, skin and features are important. This is why I hope Julian’s film gets made and is a huge success. We can never have too many images like his and Rock’s that spotlights the true beauty about black natural hair.

To make a donation visit http://www.folliclefilm.com.

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