Coming to the Small Screen: I Can Do Bad All By Myself

Categories: Movies
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Madea rides again in Tyler Perry's I Can Do Bad All By Myself, being released on DVD today. With more than $48 million in ticket sales, Perry's latest release proves that he's still got that magic touch.

We say magic because Perry's plays and films, which are aimed squarely at African-Americans, are routinely more than a sum of their parts. Like most of Perry's other releases, Bad starts with a tough-on-the-outside-but-mush-on-the-inside young woman in trouble (in this case the lovely Taraji P. Henson),  yada, yada, yada, a nice young man comes along, (CSI Miami's Adam Rodriguez) but she' been hurt too often to let him get close. More yada, yada, finally push comes to shove, Madea steps and knocks some sense into everyone. Yada, yada, the young woman finally trusts her heart and accepts the love the young man has spent the better part of the movie trying to give her. Lessons learned, happy endings all around.

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Don't get us wrong, despite the cookie cutter plotlines and none-too-subtle religious messages, watching the 6-foot-something Perry play Madea, complete with white wig, size humongous house slippers, and wayward water-balloon breasts, is a treat. The pistol-packing, wide-hipped Madea is something of a tornado, zinging one-liners at everyone in sight, and leaving a string of dazed friends and relatives in her wake. Perry also plays Madea's grumpy, selfish brother Joe (both Madea and Joe are in their late 60s).

 

Read more about Tyler Perry's I Can Do Bad All by Myself after the jump ...

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For Bad, Madea is often regulated to the background, punching things up as needed and then fading out of sight again (she tells a group of kids a bible story which somehow includes with Jesus, Noah, Siegried and Roy, and, why not, Free Willy). The bulk of the action rests on  Henson's slim shoulders. Bryan White is the married man she's living with, equal parts charm and threat. Leaving Rodriguez to be  the good guy who only wants a chance to prove himself.

 

The supporting cast is one of the best things about Bad. There's a slew of singers-turned-actors who are something of a Greek chorus. There's Gladys Knight, Mary J. Blige and Marvin Winans (yes, he's one of those Winans). No one in the trio has much of an acting career, but the smart folks in the audience know to overlook their acting and wait until one of them bursts into song.

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