The Best Man Holiday

So this fellow had written a fictitious book inspired by events in his own life... When the old group gathered for a wedding, friends questioned how much of that book was really fiction and how much was actual fact. Oops! That was the premise of "The Best Man" in 1999. Now we have a sequel which takes place 15 years later. And yes, the plot has thickened ...but those old hurts still haven't gone away.

Our little bunch has never been so witty or so appealing; the dialogue is racy, raunchy and very, very funny (the delighted audience laughed out loud over and over again). Religion unabashedly plays a big part in the plot and it is used with NO irony or derision, so we see successful middle- class families who attend church, pray together, and raise polite well- mannered children who sing religious songs at family gatherings. This is a feel-good movie with a huge principal cast, so I must limit this to just a few.

They are:
  • Taye Diggs ("Baggage Claim") is Harper, that selfsame author, back on the prowl again in quest of a topic for a new book. Since his first book's middling success, he seems to be in a sophomore slump. (He was The Best Man 15 years ago.)
  • Sanaa Lathan ("The Cleveland Show") is his wife Robyn, finally due to have a baby (Harper has a low sperm count); problem is, it's breach so she's scheduled for a C-section right after the holidays.
  • Morris Chestnut ("Ladder 49") is Lance, our Alpha dog: a pro football player, a devoted husband, and a loving father of four (he was the groom 15 years ago). Mr. Chestnut says he doesn't take his shirt off in every film, but I am happy to report that in this one he DOES!
  • Monica Calhoun (Lots of TV) is Mia, Lance's adored wife and mother to his four children. (She was the bride 15 years ago.) In that crucial football game she watches with her youngsters, we see something that resembles a rugby scrum rather than a traditional football play.
  • Terrence Howard ("Prisoners") is Quentin, a successful but wayward friend who is always in the middle of everything. I have never seen Mr. Howard so funny!
  • Nia Long ("House of Lies") is an executive with a successful book publishing company. She wants her author to write a biography of a football player who just happens to be a personal friend.
This R-rated outing contains sexual situations (not all the characters are devoted Christians) but stresses the importance of friendship, loyalty and trust. Expect plenty of profanity, lots of anatomical discussions, a girl fight, plus a time to laugh and a time to weep.

All in all, this is a nice emotional workout for everyone; that's why movies are made, isn't it? Kudos to writer/director Malcolm D Lee ("Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins"). A happy and enthusiastic screening audience exited the theater Tuesday night.
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Here is a preview:
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