Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Overlooked Movies: Why Do Fools Fall in Love?

We're all familiar (overly so) with the story of the star who falls far and hard, and Frankie Lymon fell farther and harder (and faster) than most.  Fortunately, Why Do Fools Fall in Love? doesn't take a straightforward approach to his story, and it's not even his story in the end.   Check the billing on the poster to the left.  The guy who's playing Frankie is fourth.  The movie's the story of his estate and the battle for it among his three wives, all of whom he may or may not have been married to at the same time.

This doesn't mean that Lymon's story is glossed over.  It's covered, all right, and there are some very ugly moments, especially in a movie that's essentially a comedy.  The moods mix well, better than I thought they would, and I got a kick out of the movie, especially the performances of the three leads.  Halle Berry has a good time as Zola Taylor (of the Platters, in case you don't remember), and Vivica Fox has even more fun as the con woman wife.  Lela Rochon, the Georgia schoolteacher, isn't as flashy but is equally effective.  Of course in a movie with Little Richard playing himself, "flashy" is a relative term.  Little Richard is great.

The '60s settings, the color photography, and the music all add to the fun.  I've had this DVD sitting around for years, and I don't know why I hadn't watched it.  I'm glad I finally got around to it.  Lots of fun. 


Jeff Meyerson said...

We watched it some years ago on cable and, like you, I enjoyed it more than I'd expected to. I hadn't realized until then that Zola Taylor was one of his wives.

Tom Johnson said...

They aught to make a movie on Zola Taylor's life.