They Never Looked Better: Angela Basset in “How Stella Got Her Groove Back”

Angela Bassett is the kind of classy woman that can look good in just about anything she does. Be it horror, drama, film, TV, or anything she’s bound to look as good as she can. But there’s one film in which she looked absolutely radiant that has gone and been forgotten by a good number of people. That’s kind of regrettable really since just watching it you can see that she was at the height of her acting career and managed to peak at just the right time. The film is How Stella Got Her Groove back and watching Bassett is pure joy mostly because she looks positively beautiful throughout the entire film.

There’s only one scene in which she doesn’t shine and it has to do with the mud mask, or whatever the heck is on her face, when she and her friends are in the spa. Apart from that scene it can be said that Bassett shines throughout most of the film. Even in her busiest, most hectic moments she is still a vision that most people shouldn’t be able to deny.

The film is all about a woman entering her 40’s that has a son, an ex-husband that she’s glad to be rid of, and a high-powered and pressure-filled job that keeps her constantly on the go and never seems to grant her the time to truly relax for more than a short period of time. She’s educated, she’s successful, but still her life seems rather empty in some regards. While she has her son that she absolutely loves Stella is still missing something in her life that she can’t seem to find on her own.

That all changes when she and a friend make their way to Jamaica for her first real vacation in a very long time. There she meets 20-year old Winston, a pleasant young man that eventually teaches her that life doesn’t have to end when you get older. There is a lot of controversy with the fact that a 40-year old woman is seen to be falling in love with a 20-year old man, but sometimes love doesn’t recognize the boundaries of age, and as they continue to explore one another’s worlds Stella begins to realize just what’s important and how her life needs to change.

Even in her moments of doubt and indecision Bassett looks absolutely beautiful. It’s as though this film was designed to allow her to ascend to a look of such perfection that it would be a once in a lifetime moment that would never come again. She’s looked absolutely lovely and in many ways very distinguished ever since, but as Stella she was definitely at her finest, and this is a role that probably won’t be topped as far as how magnificent she looked in every frame.

Since then she’s been in a long list of productions, but only one I can recall at the moment seems to show that same passion and fire that she had as Stella. During her stint on American Horror Story: Hotel, she played the role of Ramona Royale, and she looked absolutely dangerous as well as regal in a way that she hadn’t in a long time.

Angela Bassett is far more of an A-lister than she gets credit for.


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