Global Visions Film Series: For Colored Girls

Document Type


Publication Date



Global Visions Film Series: For Colored Girls

Told in the form of of a "choreopoem," a work that combines dance and poetry, Ntozake Shange's award-winning, experimental play "For Colored Girls" will be the first film of the semester for the Global Visions Film Series.

Director Tyler Perry, through some controversy, brought the film adaptation to the screen in 2010. Some critics openly questioned whether or not the director could give the proper treatment to a film widely regarded an iconic feminist work.

First published in 1975, Shange’s piece gave rise to toxic issues such as alcoholism and child abuse within the Black community that still plague and perpetuate the reality of Black and Brown community some 30 years later.

Illustrated through the story of Black and Brown women with intertwined lived experiences, the film exposes adorned and unadorned realities with a sense of concrete experience.

Thanks to the prose that created the film, the movie’s trailer offers a dialectically framed anticipation that portraying how Black and Brown women suffer, walk, talk, live, feel, and experience.

Black female identity in the film is both fragile and strong, full of pain, and portrayed in identification to a particular color

  • Janet Jackson (Jo/Red)
  • Loretta Devine (Juanita/Green)
  • Thandie Newton (Tangie/Orange)
  • Whoopi Goldberg (Alice/White)
  • Kimberly Elise (Crystal/Brown)
  • Anika Noni Rose (Yasmine/Yellow)
  • Kerry Washington (Kelly/Blue)
  • Tessa Thompson (Nyla/Purple) and Phylicia Rashad

The number of actresses in Black and Brown skin within these roles, gives rise to the stark absence of Black and Brown skin on film, and to the lack of complexity of character generally seen in female roles.

The Global Visions Film Series

The Department of Anthropology’s popular Global Visions Film Series (GVFS) will bring an exciting array of films to the community of Grand Forks for the 9th consecutive year. The Global Visions Film Series presents two films per month in the Memorial Union Lecture Bowl on the campus of the University of North Dakota. The series is currently the only venue in Grand Forks to view award-winning, nationally recognized independent films from a wide variety of contemporary film makers around the world. This fall, the series will bring six films to UND. All films begin at 7 p.m.

The series begins with For Colored Girls, based on Nobi Award Winning American playwright and poet Ntosake Shange’s play. . Each of the women in the film portrays one of the characters represented in the collection of twenty poems, and each poem deals with intense issues that impact women in a thought-provoking commentary on what it means to be a female of color in the world. The film is based on Ntozake Shange’s electric play, the self-described choreopoem “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf.” It is a classic of its unapologetic feminist era, consisting of some 20 poems accompanied by choreographed movement and music, including a blast of Martha and the Vandellas. The characters are seven chromatically differentiated women (brown, yellow, purple, red, green, blue and orange) from points across the country. It is a classic and unapologetic film reflective of the feminist era, of seven chromatically differentiated women (brown, yellow, purple, red, green, blue and orange) who explore and explode their stores from points across the country. This is a must see film! Rated R.

Global Visions is working with the University of North Dakota’s Great Conversation series by screening two films related to humanitarian work carried out by Doctor’s Without Borders. Dr. James Orbinski will speak on October 26th, and in honor of his visit, Triage: TRIAGE: DR. JAMES ORBINSKI'S HUMANITARIAN DILEMMA and Living in Emergency are screening on October 19th, and November 2. For more information contact:

Robin David, Assistant Professor

Honors Program, 777-6185

All films in the Global Visions Film Series are award winning national and international films, whose cinematic acuity and artistic perspectives reveal the realities of daily life from cross-cultural perspectives, exposing the unity and disparity of the human condition around the world.

Upcoming Global Visions Films Include Night Catches usWednesday, September 7TriageWednesday, October 19Living in EmergencyWednesday, November 2BiutifulWednesday, November 9Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane ArbusWednesday, December 7

This document is currently not available here.