Wow. I mean , you’ve probably heard all the reviews by this time. (I was trying to save this until I packed/moved but I’m so happy I didn’t because if I had watched this movie that was set & filmed in New Orleans right after moving I would have bawled my eyes out).
Everything people are saying is true, this movie is really funny. That’s so hard to do. It’s so hard for a big budget, grand-scale, high expectations film to actually deliver. Look at Zoolander 2. I think it’s really really hard to try and predict what people will find funny on that scale-idk something about it is incredibly elusive to me. Writing is difficult and a skill!
Obviously Tiffany Haddish is the break out star of this movie. No one knew who she was, and not only did she hold her own on screen with some of the biggest actors in the world (Queen Latifah?? Jada Pinkett Smith?? Regina Hall??? Regina Hall might not be as big a name as the other two but I have loved Regina Hall since Scary Movie and she has been consistently working since then, her IMDB page has movies for every year since she started-except 2007!! What happened in 2007 Regina? Did you take time off to attend my high school graduation?) but Tiffany out shined all of them!! When they were filming this movie in New Orleans I got to know Tiffany because she would come out and do stand up shows. She really is that funny and she’s incredibly down to earth and kind. Anyway I have her phone number and she told me I need to ask for money when I perform and she was all around great. And beautiful. Ok.
I loved how varied the comedy was in this movie, it wasn’t just physical comedy or wordplay or character-y it was kind of a mix of everything which made each type surprising when you saw it. Like when the guy shows his dick, or both pee takes, it hadn’t been especially physical up to that point so it really felt shocking in a good way. Or when someone would slip in a joke/dig it would catch you off guard because a lot of the other dialogue surrounding it had been sincere. I liked that balance. But don’t think this movie didn’t have heart too!!!!
Ok some basic plot: Regina King plays Ryan, the protagonist and a very successful lady. I’m not really sure what she does specifically, she seems like kind of a life guru. She has a book, does speaking engagements, impromptu cooking shows, and is in the middle of negotiations for a deal to turn all of that into a lifestyle brand for a store with some white lady named Bethany. (I truly loved how painful all the white women in this movie were, Kate Walsh especially, but we will get to her later). All of these endeavors revolve around the concept of “having it all” and lots of that focuses on/is validated by her marriage to Stewart Pierce (Mike Colter-Luke Cage!!). But as we find out through the Flossy Posse (the name for their friend group) he is cheating on her with an Instagram model named Simone. (Who kind of falls into the Tyler Perry dark-skinned-evil trope but ok). They have this whole dilemma of how to tell Ryan, and finally Dina (Tiffany) just blurts it out and we find out that Ryan KNOWS and they are “working through it” and that their marriage is kind of a business deal at this point.
You can tell the women are saddened by this compromise on her end, but they all want to have fun and they trust her with her judgement in her own life (except Dina) so they kind of defer to the reasons and decision she has made.
More fun stuff happens, they go out and drink and have fun, a lot of underlying tension lies between Ryan and Sasha (Queen Latifah). We don’t know why in the beginning but then it comes out that they endeavored to go into business together and Sasha kind of put it all on the line and Ryan bailed, to go into these other business opportunities with her husband and Sasha was forced to go into celebrity gossip online stuff which Ryan thinks is beneath her, but is also kind of her fault.
The reason they are in New Orleans at all, the reason for the trip is that Ryan is the keynote speaker at Essence and she has prepared her big speech. Later in the weekend, the pictures they all saw privately through Sasha’s sources, leak, and Ryan accuses Sasha for doing it on purpose for the money.
This triggers a HUGE fight between all four of them where everyone kind of airs the problems they have with everyone else, most hilariously, (of course) Dina who keeps stomping off and stomping back to give them things from her purse with explanations that are indignant in their confessions. “OH and I’ll give you back your credit card cause I don’t want you to accuse me of stealing it, and YES I maxed it out cause you got a low-ass limit,” etc.
Everyone sort of goes their separate ways. Ryan is prepared to give her speech explaining/lying about the pictures, securing the deal with Bethany, by reassuring the public that everything is great in her marriage and you really can “have it all.” But right after she begins the Flossy Posse all barges in in their embroidered denim jackets (that Lisa made earlier that they all rejected for being too ugly at the airport) and Ryan sees them and spills it all. She says, “there are some people that once you see them you have to be yourself because they know you better than that” something like that. Anyway, she says the truth, much to the dismay of the white women and gets a standing ovation from the crowd. After we find out that Bethany DOES still want to do the deal, but just with Ryan and everything works out.
I missed some parts- before this, Simone told Sasha she was pregnant and she was keeping it, Lisa had sex with one of the most beautiful men I’ve ever seen, Dina taught her the grapefruit technique (thank you Miss Angel!), all the girls tripped (lol) on Absinthe, there was a VERY passive aggressive live cooking segment about sausages, Dina dances onstage with P.Diddy, they get in a dance fight with Simone & friends in wigs, etc. etc. Throughout all this, there is a guy Julian (Larenz Tate) who they all knew in college from way back who is a successful musician now and is in town playing with Neyo. He rescues them from countless situations (gives them his hotel room, picks them up from the fight-I watched this with my friends Benjamin and Anthony and during this part Ben leaned in and said, “the most implausible part of this whole movie is that someone parked on Frenchmen”) and he and Ryan have a flirty thing but he clearly wants to keep his distance while she figures out her marriage stuff.
A note on Kate Walsh: She was so perfectly CRINGEWORTHY, it was great. She’s too entitled to black men’s bodies, she uses “slang” and says things like, “Have fun on your hashtag black girl magic weekend, girl! Preach.” It was so funny how awful she was and I thought showcased in how black women no matter how successful they are still have to put up with white bullshit (even/ESPECIALLY when it’s well-intentioned) and constantly navigate between two worlds.
This movie was really fun and I enjoyed most every minute of it (of which there were 122). I hope they do sequels forever, and that more black ensemble cast movies are funded, and that more black writers and directors are hired, and that slowly media representation catches up to the world we actually live in.
4/5 grapefruits, will for sure masturbate again!!