Radio host/comedian Steve Harvey’s book “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy and Commitment,” for one is a long-winded title. Also, Harvey has been married three times so why would anybody listen to his “sound” advice? On top of that the title is a tad misogynistic. In conclusion, their wasn’t much promise for cross promotion.
The film adaptation “Think Like A Man” was plotted as the ultimate battle of the sexes by featuring vignettes of an ensemble cast of the thirty-somethings navigating through their respective relationships with the world’s most popular comedian (Kevin Hart) throwing gasoline into the fire. The rom-com also broke down barriers, put forth by the mind set that ethnicities should socially segregate. Truly the film wasn’t very good, but it was progressive and for that it deserves credit.
“Think Like A Man Too” has the same ensemble with Hart leading the way. The group of friends are reuniting for the destination wedding of Michael (Terrence J) and Candace (Regina Hall) in Las Vegas. As the trip progresses and circumstances get progressively worse the gang of friends must unite to make sure the couple are betrothed by any means necessary.
About a third of the flick calls Hart into action as Cedric, a man-child who runs around Caesar’s Palace with his sugar mama’s (Wendy Williams) credit card like he is a kid who ate too much candy at Toys-R-Us. A more appropriate titled film would be called “Kevin Hart Goes To Vegas” and honestly that would have made for a better comedy altogether. He accentuates the broadest of humor into a some rather hilarious segments (including an accidental showdown with a Bieber-less Floyd Mayweather and a ridiculous Bam-Bam costume).
His stand-up has never been on the same level as his idols Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby, but he utilizes his physical stature with gut-busting poise. Hart is known for his hard-working mentality and it’s obvious he is working diligently to evoke painfully loud laughs from filmgoers. Don’t expect anything witty, or exceptionally clever from Hart’s brand of humor, but not every comedy has to be slight and subtle, especially when executed correctly. Remember there is a HUGE market for this comedic styling, the evidence lies within Hart’s lucrative box office return.
The conceit of old friends gathering for a weekend of debauched activities, conflict resolution, and one maverick character (Hart) for comedic relief is uninspired, and derivative from films such as “The Big Chill” and “The Hangover,” maybe even a combination of the two. However, director Tim Story has a decent filmography under his belt. The work Story accomplished with “Barbershop” (forget about the sequel “Barbershop 2: Back In Business) is a decent ensemble with a good narrative foundation that holds up to a certain extent twelve years after its’ release.
Supporting cast members Taraji P. Henson Michael Ealy, Gabrielle Union, Romany Malco and Meagan Good are appropriately casted in their roles, but their talents fail to outweigh the schlocky, overwrought narrative beats.
Bottom line, Story makes the best of material as the kinetic pacing keeps the film moving,particularly when Hart is let loose. Come for Hart, just don’t double down on any other aspects warranting a return trip.
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