- 1 hr 31 min
B*A*P*S is a 1997 comedy film that follows the lives of two best friends, Nisi and Mickey, who dream of becoming rich and famous. They find their opportunity when they enter a "Black American Princess" contest, seeking to win a grand prize of $10,000 and a chance to audition for a music video. The contest is being held by Mr. Blakemore, an eccentric millionaire who is searching for his long-lost granddaughter and heiress to his fortune. Nisi and Mickey, played by Halle Berry and Natalie Desselle Reid, are two waitresses at a Georgia diner who stumble upon the contest while waiting on the contestants. With their fierce personalities and unique take on what it means to be a Black American Princess, they decide to enter the competition themselves. Along the way, they develop a close and comical relationship with Mr. Blakemore, played by Martin Landau. As they prepare for the contest, Nisi and Mickey are thrown into a world of glamour and luxury. They are transformed from their working-class status to becoming socialites, attending lavish parties and rubbing elbows with the elite of Atlanta. However, their authenticity and values are put to the test as they are faced with the stereotypical expectations of what it means to be a Black American Princess. The film tackles themes of classism, sexism and the struggle of black women to break free from societal norms. As a part of their journey, Mickey and Nisi's bond is tested when they realise that the competition isn't everything that it's cracked up to be. Mr. Blakemore himself has been estranged from his family due to class differences, and is seeking to reconnect with his granddaughter in order to heal old wounds and right past wrongs. The performances of the cast are the highlight of the movie. Halle Berry's portrayal of Nisi is captivating and her comedic timing is impeccable. Natalie Desselle Reid's Mickey is the perfect foil to Nisi's larger-than-life personality with a more laid-back demeanor. Martin Landau's Mr. Blakemore, while initially portrayed as an eccentric millionaire, developing into a more nuanced and sympathetic character as the movie progresses. The movie's direction and cinematography follow a typical formula for the genre. With a running time of just over an hour and thirty minutes, the film is fast-paced, with distinct shifts in tone. The soundtrack, produced by Babyface, adds a touch of class to the movie, featuring late '90s R&B influences that underscore some of the film's more emotional moments. Overall, B*A*P*S is a feel-good comedy with heart, it explores the journey of two best friends and the struggles that come with breaking traditional societal norms of beauty, success and class. It's a movie that manages to balance its comedic effect with its social commentary, resulting in a movie that is both thought-provoking and entertaining. So if you're in the mood for a heart-warming tale of friendship, self-discovery and chasing your dreams, then B*A*P*S is the movie for you.