Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Madea Goes To Jail

Have you seen this woman? She's wanted here in Hollywood and pictured everywhere from Beverly Hills to North Hollywood to South Central and beyond. This pic I took right on the corner of Sunset & Vine.

Those of us that could easily pick her out in any police line up, know that such a picture could only mean one thing. Madea's baaaaaack! Obviously, you can't keep a good man--I mean woman--down and Lionsgate and Tyler Perry Studios'(TPS) show us why in thier new film, "Madea Goes to Jail". But this time the pistol-toting matriarch is going to have to do some time in the big house, and I'm not talking the one where brother, Joe, collects his check. No, I'm talking about the only place where Lil' Kim and Martha Stewart would ever be caught wearing the same colorful outfit. You guessed it! JAIL!

In this new comedic adventure Madea's antics--including a high speed chase and assault on several police officers--land her in anger management classes taught by none other than, Dr. Phil. Of course, when the classes fail and her road rage gives new meaning to "need a lift?" she winds up back in court. This time before no-nonsense law enforcer, Judge Greg Mathis. With one brief look at her record, he sends her away for an extended vacation courtesy of Dekalb County, Georgia.

But Madea isn't the character wreaking havoc in the lives of ATL's finest. Good girl gone bad, Candace Washington (Kiesha Knight Pulliam), is turning the life of high school friend, Joshua Hardaway (Derek Luke) upside down. A young Assistant District Attorney on the move, Hardaway's life is going smoothly--a pretty fiance (Ion Overmann), solid career, plans for a "buppy" future--until he's reunited with Candace, in court. She's now a prostitute in need of defense. Outwardly, the two have nothing in common, but secretly they share a past that significantly impacts both their lives.

In jail is where Madea and Candace meet. As their friendship blossoms they are taught the value of forgiveness and responsibility with the help of an unconventional counselor/teacher named Ellen (Viola Davis). It's a predictable moral story, but you don't really mind when you're busy laughing at Madea's jail house rowdiness.

Overall, the film is an enjoyable escape. The story is simple but not overly dumb-down. Yes, there are some stretches in the story, as one reporter pointed out during the press junket, but it doesn't take away from what audiences enjoy most about a Madea film--and that's fun and laughter. Personally, I would have liked to have seen better development of the love story between Candace and Joshua, but I can always go back to "Diary" for that.

So would I recommend seeing "Big Mama" Madea take charge of the big house in theaters this Friday? If you are in need of a laughter and a little escapism from your worries, then I say, yes. And if you are worry-free, my answer is the same. Though TPS may not have hit the cinematic ball out of the park this time, I still think this film is worthy supporting so that he can continually keep stepping up to bat in the Hollywood game. Remember, it's all about the box office benjamins, baby!

And in other TPS news, if you should happen to bump into Ms. Ross, Diana that is, please tell her that Tyler Perry is trying to reach her. Recently at the Four Seasons Hotel, Perry told press he's got a supreme movie role in mind for her in his new film, "A Jazz Man's Blues."

"Tyler Perry is after Diana Ross! Put that in the headlines", said Perry."The script is done. I wrote it in 1995...Got to get the right cast to do it. She's a major part of it along with Ben Kingsley, Cicely Tyson, Kimberly Elise, and myself."

And he also told us that "Why Did I Get Married?" fans need to get ready. "Why Did I Get Married Too" is on its way. Said Perry, "I'm writing it right now!" And you David and Tamela fans, have more to look forward too as well. The dynamic acting and singing duo now have their own show and it will air soon on TBS! Hallelu-er! Check www.tylerperry.com for more information.

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