Destination: Planet Negro! | Chicago Reader

Destination: Planet Negro!

This parody of old black-and-white sci-fi cheapies begins promisingly enough, with amusing opening credits and a setup in which a group of African-American intellectuals, circa 1939, decides that the future of the race depends on colonizing Mars. An astrophysicist, his brilliant protofeminist daughter, and a cocky pilot flee a traitor within their ranks and rocket into outer space, landing on a multihued planet that turns out to be earth in the 21st century. The ensuing satire has many targets, including self-hating blacks, Tea Party-style politics, and homophobia. If only director Kevin Willmott had trimmed the movie by 15 minutes or so; as it is, the humor is largely vitiated by awkward pauses and lame reaction shots.

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