Despite the suggestive cover (featuring four scantily clad women covering up with sheets) and the catchy title,Â I’m Through With White Girls is actually much more of a quirky indie treatise on finding true love, overcoming commitment phobias andÂ learning to takeÂ risks than it is a film about race, race relations or sexual misadventures. And though allÂ three of these things are subtly involved in the plot,Â they only serve as backdrops for the real story:Â the saga of aÂ 30-something who’s never been able to commit learning what to do when he finds Ms. Right.
Jay Brooks (played with geeky aplomb by Anthony Montgomery) is a graphic novel artist who has never had much luck with the ladies, as the opening montage of the film makes abundantly clear, showing Jay scribbling a quick goodbye note on a piece of paper before taking off while his girlfriend is in the shower. As a plethora of white girls commence to read the exact words from a plethora of goodbye notes that Jay has written, the audience learns that this isn’t an isolated incident; in fact it happens all the time. Jay’s best friend picks him up, he has a few inane conversations, and then decides that he’s going to quit dating white girls and attempt to nab a “sistah.” We then get to see the standard montageÂ of “bad dates” as Jay chats upÂ several entirely unrealistic caricatures before hopelessly giving up.Â It’s a relatively unimpressive introduction to the film and the film’s characters, and theseÂ first 20 minutes don’t do much to endear the audience to the plot or Jay himself. In fact, the film seems doomed to wallow in slightly pretentious, subtly racist humor until Lia Johnson bounces into the picture as the winningly oddball love interest, acclaimed author Catherine Williamson.
From this point on, the script really picks up and the humor provided by screenwriter Courtney Lilly (“Arrested Development”) begins to shine through. The relationship between Catherine and Jay feels genuine and realistic, even as the rest of the film meanders around, carefully balancingÂ between absurd and overly conventional. Johnson is fun and watchable and provides a solid anchor-point for the rest of the cast to circle around.Â Though it could have been confusing whyÂ Catherine (a successful author)Â is so enamored of Jay (a slacker commitment-phobe), Johnson is just off-kilter enough and Montgomery just smooth enough that it works perfectly.Â Also, Lilly provides enough dialogue around this very subject to make the question more of a genuine interest than a simple unrealistic plot point.
And while the film’s low budget does show through at times -Â especially during the numerous close-ups thatÂ first-time feature director Jennifer Sharp uses -Â by the end, I’m Through With White Girls is an enjoyable, quirky indie commentary on relationships. The jokes, when they hit, are actually funny (though there are a few misses), and the characters are fun to watch. This may be a straight-to-DVD release, but that doesn’t mean it’s ultra-low quality. It could stand to be a bit shorter, as some of the side stories (Jay’s brother (Lamman Rucker)’sÂ impending marriage and his best friend (Ryan Alosio)’sÂ desperate attempts to pick up a coworker) are a bit distracting and less developed than the central plot, but overall it’s a solid romantic comedy.
Zach’s Rating: C+
Perfect For: Anyone looking for a low-budget pick-me-up
Stay Away if: You want to stay away from stilted conversations
To purchase I’m Through With White Girls, visit Amazon