Next Friday

Bomb Rating: 

I firmly believe that Ice Cube has a gift for comedy. It's just that it exists in the same universe as "Melanie Griffith, the awe-inspiring actress," "Fat Chicks, the number one-rated show written by David E. Kelly," and "Gilbert Gottfried, host of Masterpiece Theater."

"Next Friday" is the sequel to "Friday," which featured Craig (Ice Cube) beating up Deebo (Tiny Lister, Jr.). Now, Mr. Jones (John Witherspoon) sends Craig to the suburbs to live with his cousin, Day Day (Mike Epps) because Deebo is due to be released from prison. Basically, Craig discovers that the suburbs have as many problems as the city, which may be news to him, but isn't to anybody else.

The most alarming thing about this film was the number of parents who brought their children to see it -- and we're talking really young kids here. Most of the film's humor derives from some sort of profanity-laden tirade or a scenario where one character has an automatic weapon pointed at another. In other words, a perfect film for little Caitlin and Dakota to discuss in minivan on the way home.

Basically, everybody in the film is either stupid or stupidly violent. Only Ice Cube is normal, which may be some sort of insidious plan to polish up his public image: "I'm the normal one! It's the world that's screwed up. No, really!" Okay, sure, but has Cube checked his name lately? The man named himself after little chunks of crystallized water. Perhaps the move to comedy was an obvious one, since Ice Cube is already a walking joke.

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