Weekend Movies–When everything gets 90% on Rottentomatoes, is anything good?

barber1Seriously flummoxed by the laudatory reviews for the overloaded, stagey/preachy most-laughs-miss “message” comedy “Barbershop: The Next Cut.”

It’s an almost two hour sermon, with characters marching onto center stage, doing their “bit,” then sauntering off. Badly directed, Common can’t play comedy, covers similar ground as the earlier films, tedious misuse of JB Smoove, Anthony Anderson as a stock type, Nicki Minaj? Did Ice Cube suddenly become a good actor? Come on!

The best gag in it might be the pretentiously inventive names the cast chose for themselves — Eve, Tyga, Cedric the Entertainer, Ice Cube, Common, Smoove, Minaj. Cedric’s “Eddie” in the film ought to go off on that.

Ice Cube hectoring his son about pretending to be “hard” when he isn’t (pot, kettle), lecturing about the need to wear a belt in your pants. That could’ve been ironically funny. But no.

Is “Hey, I hate white people, too!” joke from the “conservative” Indian-American hairdresser funny enough to put it over, the “What’s Obama ever done for us?” and “save our neighborhood from gang bangers/the City” debates, the attempted infidelity dismissed without a thought?

Junk movie. Badly written, badly directed, badly acted. Not as good as the first “Barbershop,” not as bad as the last one. Come on, people. Standards! Have some!

A lot of reviewing organizations sent their third stringers to this. And 90%+ on Rottentomatoes is what you get.

The latest CG+actors version of Kipling’s “The Jungle Book” may still be “Disney’s The Jungle Book.” Not their first or second version of it, either. But it’s earned great reviews, too. 

“Criminal” is a simple-minded sci-fi dog from Summit, another body switch movie rendered watchable by a gonzo turn by Kevin Costner, who leaves his stoic heroic persona aside for a fresh walk on the wild side. Watchable, but bad.

Like “Barbershop.” Only shorter.

“Green Room” is a well-regarded horror thriller that hits more screens at the end of the month (smarter to get it way out in front of the summer films, but what do I know?).

Nothing else, including the new musical film from the creators of “Once,” “Sing Street,” is getting a wide release.

“Jungle Book” and probably “Barbershop,” both established brands, will OWN “The Boss” and “Batman v. Superman” at the box office.

Box Office mojo figures $78 and $29 million openings for the two new films.

Box Office Guru figures $70 and $28 (with the all-star “Criminal” managing only $7).


About Roger Moore

Movie Critic, formerly with McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orlando Sentinel, published in Spin Magazine, The World and now published here, Orlando Magazine, Autoweek Magazine
This entry was posted in Reviews, previews, profiles and movie news. Bookmark the permalink.