Movie Review: “Think Like a Man Too”

ImageSequels, as “22 Jump Street” joked, are always “the same, only worse.”
So any pretense of insight into the battle of the sexes and any real connection to stand-up comic turned self-appointed relationships expert Steve Harvey’s book, “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man,” is long forgotten in “Think Like a Man, Too,” the sequel to the surprise hit of two springs back.
Kevin Hart has become the break-out star of this ensemble, so “Too” is basically a star vehicle for the Manic Little Man — with Vegas as the playground for this “Bridesmaids” meets “The Hangover.”
This generally mild-mannered comedy sinks or swims on Hart’s back. And as one scene makes clear, Little Man can’t swim.
Our “Think Like a Man” couples head to Vegas where Candace (Regina Hall) and Michael (Terrence Jenkins) are getting married.
Cedric (Hart) has been mistakenly been named Best Man, and is spending every cent he’s got — and then some — for a bachelor party for the ages for Michael, with Dominic (Michael Ealy), “Zeke the Freak” (Romany Malco), Jeremy (Jerry Ferrara) and and Bennett (Gary Owen) along for the ride. Business executive Lauren (Taraji P. Henson) has set up a bachelorette party for Candace, Mya (Meagan Good), Kirsten (Gabrielle Union), Tish ( Wendi McLendon-Covey) and Sonia (La La Anthony). If only the groom’s overbearing mom (Jenifer Lewis) will let her.
Hart’s Cedric narrates the tale, which feebly grasps at basketball metaphors to “keep score” as the two ensembles head out into the Sin City night. Cedric nags the groom.
“You’ve got the rest of your life…to follow this woman around the grocery store,”
And he needles their posse for their lack of party prowess.
“I’m SICK of this NON-tourage.”
Introduce strains in the careers/lives of Chef Dominic and workaholic Lauren, baby-making efforts for “bossy” Kristen and stoner Jeremy, and Cedric’s own “we’re on a break” marriage.” Throw in some weak Vegas cameos (Floyd Mayweather, Drake) and assorted overly familiar gambling scenarios, a funny Ladies Lip Sync Bel Biv Devoe scene that is the film’s highlight, and a pretty good brawl in a strip club, and that’s about it.
We’re invited to laugh at the “Uncle” (silky smooth Dennis Haysbert) brought in to distract Michael’s obnoxious mother and begged to giggle at the recycled “Never say never in VEGAS, baby” zingers.
None of it’s fresh, and Hart’s finest moment comes way too early — a no-holds-barred recreation of Tom Cruise’s underwear dance from “Risky Business” — to justify building the movie around him.
Maybe the funniest gag is the actual Steve Harvey cameo, a backhanded slap at just how far one comic/radio host/game show host/author/self-help chat show counselor can take “selling out.” The answer — when your face is on a slot machine.
But if there’s one lesson we, if not this “Think” cast and crew can take from “Jump Street,” sequels can be “exactly the same.” They don’t necessarily have to be worse.

Image
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for crude sexual content including references, partial nudity, language and drug material
Cast: Kevin Hart, Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, Megan Good, Michael Ealy, Jenifer Lewis, Romany Malco, Dennis Haysbert
Credits: Directed by Tim Story, scripted by Keith Merryman and David A. Newman. A Screen Gems release.
Running time: 1:46

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6 Responses to Movie Review: “Think Like a Man Too”

  1. Fred says:

    I won’t knock you for your review because it’s your opinion and you’re certainly entitled to such. Having not seen the new film yet I can’t comment on it’s quality, but as far as the first film goes it was excellent and i’ll have to disagree with you there. It’s probably hard for you to grasp the humor and the meaning of it from films like this with predominantly black casts in them. And it’s no knock on you or anything, it’s just our humor is a little bit different and can be hard for some non-black folks to comprehend. Everything they’re saying I get, I’ve heard it growing up and get the full meaning of it, but from your perspective there might be some lines and comments where your saying I don’t get it, what does that mean?

    • I never said I didn’t like the first film. I did. Interviewed STeve Harvey about it when it came out. This is inferior.

      • Fred says:

        I understand, you not the only critic by far that feels that way judging by the reviews. The general consensus on this film seems to echo your sentiments. Traditional comedies rarely seem to match the superior originals, the recent ’22 Jump Street’ is one of the rare films that seems to have buck that trend. Though I’m planning on seeing it this week, it’s too bad ‘Think Like A Man Too’ isn’t a better film.

      • It plays well enough for an audience, I figure. Some folks laughed, and there are a few good moments (mostly from the ladies). And you won’t be alone. This puppy is critic proof. It’ll do business, critics be damned.

      • Fred says:

        In that way it is critic proof and will probably perform well enough to get to a 3rd film. The problem is when there is a drop off in quality, it’s usually always felt the film after and not the current one. Look at “The Hangover”, because the first film was so well liked the sequel became an even bigger hit, but because the sequel was considered to be inferior by critics in general, the 3rd film really suffered and paid the price as it came nowhere near the previous films domestic box office grosses.

      • If it doesn’t do the predicted $36 million on opening, Hart will have bigger fish to fry and move on. It’s on a par with “Hangover II,” in terms of laughs. But if Hart’s smart, this will be his exit. He waited a long time to get in this position, he can afford to turn choosy. Right now.

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