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May 2006

Big Momma's House DVD Review

By Kam Williams

Big Momma's House DVD Review


Cast: Martin Lawrence, Nia Long, Elton LeBlanc, Sarah Brown, Michelle Parylak
Director: John Whitesell
Format: Color, Dolby, Dubbed, Full Screen, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Number of discs: 1
Rating: PG-13 for coarse humor and a drug reference
Studio: 20th Century Fox
DVD Release Date: May 9, 2006
Run Time: 98 minutes
DVD Features:
Available Subtitles: English, Spanish
Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.1 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.1 Surround)
Commentary by director John Whitesell, producer David T. Friendly and actor Zachary Levi
12 deleted/extended scenes with optional commentary
"Big Momma's Secrets" featurette

Martin Lawrence Back in Drag for Uninspired Adventure

Besides Martin Lawrence and Nia Long, no other original cast members were signed on for this sorry sequel, and Nia's role has been radically reduced to a wraparound role as his hand-ringing and very pregnant wife. As a result, Big Momma 2 is a star vehicle with Martin expected to inject energy into every scene.

The movie takes place in Los Angeles, where FBI Agent Malcolm Turner has taken a desk job in deference to his spouse's concerns about his dangerous profession. However, after his partner is slain by a computer espionage ring, he decides to bring the perpetrators to justice. So, he dusts off the fat suit and applies for a job as a nanny in the home of the prime suspect. But what Malcolm didn't count on was that that trying to tend to the creep's three kids would turn out to be as challenging as cracking the case.

Expect to sit stoned-faced throughout the duration of this humorless adventure, from Big Momma's blackmailing his employers to get the job ("I got Al Sharpton on speed dial") to the mean-spirited way he makes fun of white people dancing ("flailing like a couple of stroke victims").Worse than its absence of wit or charm, the movie's preposterous premise tests the bounds of rationality at every turn. Why would Malcolm lie to both his wife and his boss about going back undercover? Why would he choose to dress in drag again, when it was totally unnecessary? Why would he claim to be half-Jewish? Why would he fill a beloved pet dog's water bowl with Tequila? And why, after all the trouble he goes through to catch the murderer, would he then intervene to keep the killer out of prison? No logic, no laughs, just a textbook "take-the-money-and-run" sequel.

Fair (1 star)