Beyoncé does it again…and she did not disappoint – Her grand statement of African-diaspora Unity, Pride and Creative power.
Black is King is a 2020 American musical film and visual album directed, written and executive produced by American singer-songwriter Beyoncé. The film serves as a visual companion to the 2019 album The Lion King: The Gift, a tie-in album curated by Beyoncé for the 2019 remake of The Lion King. The core theme of the film is that with kingship comes responsible manhood and centres on Africa’s ancestral legacies and glories of Black beauty.
Beyoncé definitely shined as she played various roles in this story – mother, Boss, Clubber, Biker, Queen… – with an apparently infinite wardrobe that draws on ancient African essence alongside extravagant haute couture.
She places herself in glorious open landscapes, a mansion, a gritty warehouse and a leopard-patterned Rolls-Royce and was glorious enough to share the screen with African and Black American faces: dancers, tribal elders, City hustlers and willingly lets herself be upstaged by African collaborators whose faces most of her American fans may not have seen, like Busiswa from South Africa, Saltiel from Cameroon and Yemi Alade, Tiwa Savage, Wiz kid, Mr. Eazi from our very own Nigeria.
Everything from the Song vocals, Production to Dance have been talked about since the film got out and most reviews praise all the work that went into bringing this to life, however the fashion tops them all and we would like to describe the fashion as overwhelmingly beautiful. Scene after scene after scene had pieces that would leave you speechless. To describe the amount of fashion on display as an “extravaganza” or a “feast” or any other words used to generally convey exciting haute runway content doesn’t even begin to come close to the reality of the production.
Unlike what most other celebrities would do, Beyoncé collaborated with multitudes of designers across the globe. Just to mention a few; Valentino Couture (Cheetah-Print body suit); Erdem (rose festooned giant flounce tea dress); Burberry (Cowhide cow print); Thierry Mugler (rainbow printed jersey draped mini dress); London based Michaela stark (denim corset and pudding jeans); Ivory coast based Loza maleombho (graphic print gold-buttoned jacket)… each song had more than a dozen looks. Our very own Tiwa Savage and Yemi Alade were not left out in the fashion frenzy. WHO ROCKED BEST – Tiwa Savage or Yemi Alade? Leave a comment at the comment section below.
Because of the world and times we live in, expect some negative comments about her efforts especially on social media. Some would say this is not a true representation of Africa and others will just blatantly hate. However, throughout the film, Beyoncé connects the fantastical narrative of the Lion King to a more general message of Black legacy, what it means to honour one’s ancestors, and what lessons should be passed down to the next generation, looking at Black America as the lost Simba who needs to find his way back to the Mother land – and I think she did a great job.
Let us know what you think. we would like you to comment on the comment section below.