Sunday, February 28, 2016
FRIDAY AFTER NEXT (2002)
Directed By: Marcus Raboy
Written By: Ice Cube
Based on Characters Created By: Ice Cube & DJ Pooh
Cinematography By: Glen MacPherson
Editor: Suzanne Hines
Cast: Ice Cube, Mike Epps, John Witherspoon, Don ‘DC’ Curry, Maz Jobrani, Terry Crews, Katt Williams, Anna Marie Horsford, Bebe Drake, K.D. Aubert, Clifton Powell, Rickey Smiley, Sommore, Joel McKinnon Miller, Chris Williams, Khleo Thomas, Trina McGee
Craig and his cousin Day-Day have finally gotten jobs as mall security guards and moved into their own crib. When a fake evil Santa Clause robs their rundown apartment on Christmas Eve, they embark on a comical adventure in an effort to track down the bandit and retrieve their stolen toot. Meanwhile Day-Day's rent-a-cop tactics cause them to continually miss their chance to catch the Santa Clause and instead has them squaring off against innocent caroling ladies, shady neighborhood kids and the police!
This feels like an unnecessary sequel that you knew was coming. Either as a follow up that sought out to be more hood then the last or just another chapter in the life of Ice Cube’s and Mike Epps characters.
It would have been nice if the film waited a while between the sequels so the audience is more starved for this sequel, though I am guessing the thinking was to strike while the iron was hot. Which seems to be a theme when ice Cube has successful movies. They seem to come out every year or every two with sequels.though with so many franchises he seems to be trying to wait between sequels, It seems more due to his busy schedule.
One thing that this film successfully does it that just as the last film introduced comedian Mike Epps to the big screen and movies. This film introduces actor Terry crews and comedian Katt Williams to the big screen and they of course steal the movie. When they are both in a scene together it is hilarity to the highest order.
Don't get me wrong the film is funny in parts, it is just usually funnier when those two are on the screen. As there are many scenes where they try for high comedy but it only comes out as passable Or like it is trying too hard. Once it trusts itself that is when the film actually works and fires on all gears. Though that is far and in between.
The film seems more of the same only now instead of being restricted to a neighborhood the film travels In Between and apartment complex they live in and the mini-mall they work at.
This film seems like the third in a trilogy but also seems a bit more of a direct sequel at least in quality to the original Friday. Even though this film feels kind of watered down and weak compared to the first film.
As usual the plot revolves around trying to get money or find something that was stolen. Literally here it is one and the same for the most part. --Here everyone seems to be going through the motions. As usual the film is filled with characters who come in and out of their lives as regulars.
At this point though exciting it feels like the series, actors and characters are getting long in the tooth for their roles. As they seem to have made no moves forward and seem stuck in the same kind of cycle. Which I know is putting in too much thought, but it becomes clear that the films are going to be the same old thing unless something changes and here are more stakes. Or they end up becoming like the Bing Crosby and Bob Hope films. Only here more combined as a series then just co-stars
Also in the original film there was at least a romantic angle and ever since that one. In the last sequel there was a quest to hook up. That at least seemed to have interaction and flirting. In this film it is literally ice cube seeing a girl at a shop. They look into each other's eyes and soon are in a quest to hook up that pretty much takes a backseat up until the ending he Comes staggering together. It also is as close as the film comes to female representation as at least in the first film we knew Nia Long was about something. In the two sequels the women are attractive and available, but we hardly learn anything about then other than that.
At least in this film they seem to bring back most of the favorites from the past films as John Witherspoon has more to do In this film and is featured more as well as having Anna mar return as ice cube's mom.
It's nice to see Bebe Drake as their landlord she is a nice welcome as a villain and comic device also. Which she has provided in films such as WHICH WAY IS UP?, HOUSE PARTY, BOOMERANG, OH GOD! BOOK 2. and television shows like MARTIN she has marketed herself on playing this type of it's nice to see a reunion of most of the greatest hits characters from the previous films corn together in this film even if still no Chris Tucker. (Even Chico the dog from the last film is here)
Though at least the films seem to try a bit harder than the last film to continue on in the legacy. As one of the strengths of the series of films has been more he comedic supporting characters rather than the leads at times. Not only their characters but their interactions with the leads. That truly set these films apart and make them something noteworthy. Even if Ice Cube and John Witherspoon are the only characters to appear in all the films.
Chris Tucker was asked to reprise his role for the third film in the franchise, but rejected. Mike Epps then called up asking to reprise his role less than 1 hour later.
The character of Roach was written into the original script, but the script was rewritten after actor Justin Pierce died. It seemed even outdated when it came out. Though definitely an improvement of sorts over the second film.