About Features Reviews Community Screenings Archives Studios Home
April 2007

Are We Done Yet?

By Wilson Morales

Are We Done Yet?

Distributor: Columbia Pictures
Director: Steve Carr
Producers: Ted Hartley, Ice Cube, Matt Alvarez, and Todd Garner

Screenwriter: Hank Nelken, based on characters created by Steven Gary Banks and Claudio Grazioso, and based on the films, “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House”

Cast: Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen, Philip Bolden, John McGinley,

Rating: PG



There’s nothing worse than watching a sequel to a film that has lost all of its flavor. Ice Cube is one of the few actors that have made sequels out of some of his film. In fact, he’s the sole reason why the “Friday” and “Barbershop” film franchises were even made. He provides the spark and lets the others do the work. Sooner or later he had to hit a bump, and with latest film, unless the box office say otherwise, “Are We Done Yet” should have stayed in his head as idea and not a film. Though the first film, “Are We There Yet?”, was a huge success with $98 million and inevitably a sequel was all but guaranteed, Cube forgot to add the comedy that worked in the first film instead of relying on elements from other films.

Basing the film on the 1948 classic, “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House”, Nick Persons (Ice Cube) is now married to his then-girlfriend Suzanne (Long), and she’s expecting twins, which will add to his immediate family when you include her kids, Lindsey and Kevin (Aleisha Allen and Philip Bolden). To make it easy for everyone to live comfortably, Nick buys a country house from real estate agent Chuck Mitchell, Jr (McGinley). All starts to look good until things start to fall to apart one by one, starting with the roof, then the floors, and then everything else. Before you know it, Nick now has to spend more money and hire a contractor, who happens to be Chuck, and things just get worse. Not only has Nick entered his life in more ways than one, but he also has a made a friend with Suzanne, which just irks Nick. Nick also has to battle the local animals that prey around the house such as the raccoons. He also has to earn respect points, once again, from Lindsey and Kevin, when he starts to act like a responsible stepdad to them. When he loses control of the situation as well as his family, Nick has to find a way to make things right before his twins are born.

Family filled adventures are usually lightweight because they don’t have much of a plot except for scenes that kids can enjoy, and there’s plenty of them here; but the problem lies in that we have seen all of this before and gets redundant very quickly. From “Home Alone” to the “The Money Pit” to “Big Momma’s House” to countless others, there’s isn’t one element of originality here. Everyone’s on remote. Cube does everything BUT make you laugh. It’s nice to see Nia Long get back in the game, but does she have to be pregnant and given little to do. Her role here is just a shy more minutes than she had in “Big Momma’s 2” where she played a pregnant newlywed in that film as well. Once Cube starts to lose against the animals and the kids, you pretty much know where the film was going. McGinley seemed to be the only one enjoying the “laughter” on screen, but after some scenes, his act got tired as well. Do yourself a favor and stick with the first film before we get another “Are We…..Yet?” film.