I am sooooo not in the audience for a Chris Rock film--or so I would have thought. I'm white, in my 60's, liberal but not urban or indeed hip in any sense, and the only five rap artists I could name are those who went on to acting careers.
And yet...this was a definitely movie for me. It's observational, mature, witty, good-hearted, mostly a rom-com but also about the battle between external expectations and inner desire, young adulthood and maturity.
The plot of the movie, which has everyone but a few good friends wanting poor Andre to keep doing his funny stuff, the talking bear movies, while he wants to do more significant work? That ends up perfectly predicting the audience reaction you see here via the reviews. "Where's the hysterical Chris Rock **** jokes?" people stuck in 1992 want to know.
There is some of that in here...and it's exactly the stuff I hated (Cedric and the whores; the tampon thing--ish, edit them both out) and that made me rate this a couple stars lower than I might have otherwise. So as I pity Andre in the film (omg, having "Hammy!" shouted at you 1000 times day!), I pity Rock even more for living out this life, even in the year since this movie's release, even right here on IMDb, with angry comments by old-school fans of his. Man, that's life imitating art imitating life.
I hope I see more like this from him.
I enjoy that I was able to like all these characters and sympathize with them. I liked the set up for the reveal about Chelsea. I liked how Silk was a stock character you thought you knew, until he wasn't in the final 1/4 of the film. I was tickled. I was moved. I was pressed to think.
(and I did sort of like the rap song running over the end credits, so one never knows, eh?)
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