Neko & Patricia Meicholas of Guanima Press Ltd visit the students of Bayview Academy with gifts of their new book Lusca and Other Fantastic Tales
By Neko Meicholas
Why does it always seem that everything I do starts with me not wanting to be bothered?
Have I gotten that old?
Have I become that miserable?
As usual, the evening started with me having promised to do something and no longer wanting to do it. Only two things kept me moving forward; I had made a promise to my niece to go and she had already spent her money. Too, I had wanted to support the efforts of another Bahamian artist…something I always try to do.
As I had missed the premier of the movie at Atlantis because of a total screwup in our scheduling I felt I was obligated to get my tired, overburdened tokhes (tuckus? Whatever!) up and go and support Kareem Mortimer’s latest effort and I’m glad I did.
Although Cargo has its weak points, like several dialogue/script issues, problems with Bahamian dialect use and a few unconvincing actors who really need to hone their skills, Kareem’s production held my attention. He told a story and told it beautifully. Would I ever watch this movie again? Hell no! By the end of the movie my heart was broken and I was so intensely depressed I could not bear to voluntarily put myself through that level of emotional devastation again. Quite frankly, Kareem was too successful at achieving his goal and telling his story, and telling it excellently.
WELL DONE KAREEM!
There were several powerful scenes in the movie delivered by the two stand-out actors: Berneice (played by Persia White) has a meltdown at the dinner table and Mona (played by Sky Nicole Grey), the Jamaican caretaker, finds herself trapped in a terrible situation as a result of Kevin (played by Warren Brown), the main character’s terribleness and descent into complete depravity. These two women actually play the most tragic characters in the movie.
After the movie ended and I had given it more thought, I realized that, in Cargo, Kareem had paid homage to the film American Beauty that stars the now sadly disgraced Kevin Spacey. I will leave you, the viewer, to discover those bits on your own.
In Cargo, I truly appreciated that Kareem had gone after art. The beautiful opening scene with the wooden necklace/rosary floating languidly in the blue water with the sunlight dancing around which heralds the only positive moment that comes later in the movie; the little broke-down crap-ass piece of boat chugging, forward in an endless sea of blue heading toward an uncertain destiny; the grot and ugliness of Celianne’s (played by Gessica Geneus) home and the moment when Kevin is forced to clean his mother’s shit from the walls of her room are a few.
And… for those more prurient viewers out there YES this movie has more than enough “T”, “A” and “D” to keep you happy. I mean quite frankly and quite humorously locked in my mind is Celianne’s dark, rigid skyward-pointing nipples contrasted against her suspiciously proud breasts and the blue water… I wonder how these aspects were negotiated in the actors’ contracts? (Insert wicked grin here).
Like the movie Lord of the Rings with its too many endings, I feel that Mortimer could have done without the multiple endings of Cargo, especially, the pointless scene between the grandson and grandmother.
Would I recommend going to see Cargo to anyone?
Kareem does a great job of telling a story that needed to be told and does a beautiful job of doing it…never mind a few hiccups.
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By Neko Meicholas
I am not interested in writing fancy, big-worded, pretentious, pleonastic art reviews—in short no bafflegab for me. I have neither the inclination, nor the desire and I would prefer to write about my gut reaction to an artist’s work.
I have just returned from an awesome experience. Everything seemed to align to make it wonderful. And to think, I had been tempted not to bother to attend, simply because I could barely muster the energy to stuff myself into stiff clothing. I’m so happy that I ignored my cave-dwelling, hermit’s personality and made the effort. I put on the clothes, got into the truck, drove over the bridge, etc, etc.
We arrived early. We had half an hour before we were to be met. As we were at the Cove on Paradise Island, waiting in their beautiful surroundings would be absolutely no problem. What is more, today was the first day of Bahamian winter which meant that the temperature was simply perfect—not too hot, not too cold. So we sat in their breezeway and we spent the time watching…the carp? Koi? Fish!
By the time our greeter, who had walked past us twice, finally realized that we had arrived early and cautiously approached asking who we were, we had been waiting for nearly forty minutes. I had seen her both times and had a more than 1,000% correct inkling that she was the one meeting us, but I wanted to take some photos and I wanted to watch the fish and so I played truant, looking for an excuse to avoid being shut in by ceremony. No harm done…cheerfully, our greeter finally escorted us through the many walkways of the Cove, onto the waiting buggy and then out onto the beach at the wondrous Cove Point.
We were already perfectly calm from our visit with the fish but—the ocean, the setting sun, the Junkanoo drummers playing in front of the fire and the view, in the distance, of the sculptures in Antonius Roberts’ newest Sacred Space simply made for perfect tranquility.
We were in an extraordinary space. A foretaste of heaven maybe?
The big G’s natural resplendence, and the man-made glory He doubtless inspired was reaching out to touch our tired, slightly discouraged, and definitely overburdened souls. As we walked along the sand and finally stood in the centre of Antonius' seven praying women I took a deep breath and simply reveled in the moment, the art surrounding me and the perfection of my surroundings. Everything had worked together in perfect harmony.
The carved wooden women with their copper headdresses stood in still adoration and in contrast against a darkening sky, lending to its own mauve-tinged glory. The event introducing the bevy of sculptures to the group was brief. It opened with Jack and B’er Debbil—a fun session of storytelling by Patricia Glinton-Meicholas; a few words from the COO of Atlantis, Audrey Oswell and then the artist, Antonius Roberts paid a tribute to women—especially those who have contributed to his formation.
Cameras dangling, I stood on the side clicking away and simply standing quietly in and enjoying the moment. Was anyone else feeling what I was feeling?
As with all good things they end far too quickly. Personally, I would have happily spent another few hours in that glorious space that was filling me with such a wonderful sense of much needed peace.