Review: Something New

Something New, a movie with a story that just might be a perfect romance, is now on Netflix. Can you tell it's a favorite of mine?

Something New is not just a great story, it's superbly acted. In case you don't subscribe to Netflix, you can
stream it or buy the DVD/BluRay from Amazon.


Kenya McQueen (Sanaa Lathan) is an over-achiever from a family of the same. She's beautiful, smart--a CPA up for partner--and unhappy. You might think this is just another story of a woman looking for a man, but it's more than that. She's looking for freedom to be herself, but she doesn't know that yet.

When challenged to "let go and let flow," she accepts a blind date, but she's plainly stunned and dismayed to find that the man is white. He's just the opposite of what her ideal man is: handsome black men who is a professional of some kind. Brian Kelly (Simon Baker) works with his hands. Through some rather amusing incidents that follow, she ends up hiring him as her landscape architect.

The Outcome

As one might expect when you get two single, appealing adults of the opposite sex together, attraction follows. Brian challenges herself to really leg go--of her hair weave, her insistence on clothes that are black and a home that's beige. A life that is beige!

Even as she's falling in love with this adorable man who dotes on her, she uncomfortable and embarrassed by the fact that he's black. After she's lost Brian and met the man who meets all her criteria--portrayed by the always-handsome Blair Underwood--does she realize what she has lost.

Sanaa Lathan is perfect in this role of an uptight woman professional, and Simon Baker matches her performance. At the end of the movie, when he kisses her it just looks so "real" as if he doesn't care what's going on around him, he's entirely focused on her. For Kenya, at the end, she's relaxed, smiling, and like a new woman because she really has received everything she wanted--and everything she didn't know she needed.

The Cast

Sanaa Lathan and Simon Baker headline a cast composed of Alfre Woodard, Earl Billings, Katharine Towne, Stanley DeSantis, K.C. Clyde, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Golden Brooks, Taraji P. Henson, Marcus Brown, Russell Hornsby, , Danny Wooten, Mike Epps, Lee Garlington, Tonita Castro, Matt Malloy, David Monahan, Gabriel Tigerman, Donald Faison, and Tanisha Harper.

The fabulous Alfre Woodard is Kenya's mom who has rigid ideas about how her daughter should live her life. Wonderful Earl Billings who has been in just about everything in his 30 years on the stage, movies, and TV,  is her father, a man so full of wisdom that steals the show with a scene in the ladies' restroom in which he encourages her to follow her heart. Like Ms. Woodard, he's just good in everything I've ever seen him in.

Takeaway Truth

This isn't just a good romance movie. It's a good movie about how life can change in an eyeblink--just as dreams and expectations can.

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