Box Office Democracy: “Think Like a Man Too”
The original Think Like a Man was one of the worst movies I saw in 2012. It was an overplotted mess of a comedy that tried to even the scales on gender relations and succeeded only in as far as it made every character seem like an atrocious human being. The biggest sin that Think Like a Man Too commits is that it makes me feel bad for the first movie because this one just completely throws out any uniqueness they had and exchanges it for another cliché Vegas party movie that we’ve all seen a million times.
The original movie had a point of view. Women needed to think like men to get men to do what they wanted which was overwhelmingly commit more but in one case was let go of everything he liked. This movie substitutes that point of view for mother-in-law jokes that feel like they would be at home on the primetime comedy lineups of CBS or TBS. Maybe they were going for something about focusing on having a good time on your bachelor/bachelorette parties but that really doesn’t seem like thematic content fit for a feature film.
There’s an odd racial politics element at play in this movie. I would guess the target audience for this film is black women in their mid-20s to mid 30s. I am a 30 year-old white man. I get a feeling of lack of representation from this movie that I never get. There are three white people in this movie and two of them are basically just used as schlemiels to get quick little bits going for the other characters to look exasperated. Then there’s Jeremy the comics-loving stoner played by Jerry Ferrara who I should probably be able to force myself in to the perspective of but I’ll be damned if my avatar in a movie is going to be the guy who played Turtle in Entourage. I’m by no means arguing that white people need more or better representation in movies but if this is how every minority feels watching every other movie I feel so bad on behalf of the entire entertainment industry.
A fatal flaw from the first movie was there were so many events happening that there was no space to actually have anything funny happen. The characters spend so much time talking about stuff that the only laughs are to be had by Kevin Hart doing physical comedy and even then he’s often pushed to the background of the shots so he can be funny while the other actors slog through more and more exposition. It’s sound and fury signifying nothing though because none of it ever pays off. The problems are all solved by conversations that didn’t need to be inspired by the events of the film. They build and build but the resulting construction isn’t worth the time and the effort. Think of whatever municipal construction project this is most like in your region, then imagine a tiny black man in a Bamm-Bamm costume hitting a muscular man with a fake club. I just saved you $15. You’re welcome.