6.9/10
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Soul Food (1997)

One person can keep a family together and, when that one person is gone, a family can be torn apart.

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6 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Teri (as Vanessa L. Williams)
...
Maxine
...
Bird
...
Miles
...
Lem
Brandon Hammond ...
Ahmad
...
Kenny
...
Faith
...
...
...
Simuel
Morgan Méchelle Smith ...
Kelly
John M. Watson Sr. ...
Uncle Pete
M.T. Alexander ...
Jada
...
Harome
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Storyline

Matriarch Mama Joe has held her family together for 40 years around a Sunday dinner of soul food. When diabetes hospitalizes her, the dinners stop and tensions among her three daughters start to break the family apart. Two of the sisters feud continuously: Teri is jealous of Maxine's marriage and irritated that everyone assumes her corporate salary is open to the rest of the family's uses. Maxine resents Teri's bossiness and insensitivity to family tradition. Bird, the youngest, newly married to an ex-con, accepts a favor from an old lover that leads to her husband's arrest. Mama Joe's grandson Ahmad cooks up a scheme to bring the family together, back to the table. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

There's Plenty For Everyone! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 September 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A mama főztje  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$7,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$11,197,897 (USA) (26 September 1997)

Gross:

$43,490,057 (USA) (23 January 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Tamara Braun. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the scene for the Sunday dinner that Ahmad arranged, there is a pitcher of grape or purple Kool-Aid. When the meal starts, the glasses are filled with a red drink. See more »

Quotes

Maxine: [after Bird discovers Lem dancing with his ex at her wedding reception] Now, that's what she gets. Bringing in somebody who ain't got nothing and putting him off on family.
Teri: What do you mean, putting him off on family? How about putting him off on me? I'm the one who paid for this wedding!
Maxine: [rolling her eyes] Teri, why do you ALWAYS have to let everybody know how much you pay for everything?
Teri: Because I DO.
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Connections

Referenced in Attack of the Clones Review (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

In Due Time
Written by André Benjamin and Big Boi (as Antwan Patton)
Performed by Outkast featuring CeeLo Green of Goodie Mob
Produced by Outkast for Earthtone Ideas Music Inc.
OutKast and Cee-Lo appear courtesy of LaFace Records
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User Reviews

 
A Warm and Engaging Family Film
18 July 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

SOUL FOOD is an entertaining and, at times moving film that chronicles the lives of a tight-knit African American family. Big Mama (Irma P. Hall) is the widowed patriarch and referee who always knows exactly what to say to her children in any situation. Vanessa Williams is Terri, the oldest daughter, a no-nonsense attorney who spends a lot of time bailing family members out of tight spots and never lets them forget it. Terri's husband Miles (Michael Beach) is also an attorney who really wants to be a musician and is fighting an attraction to Terri's flaky cousin Faith (Gina Ravera). Viveca A. Fox is Maxine, the middle daughter who is married to Kenny (Jeffrey D. Sams), who we learn she stole from Terri when they were teenagers and has a son Ahmad (Brandon Hammond)who assists Big Mama in her job as family referee. The story opens at the wedding of youngest daughter Bird (Nia Long)whose new husband (Mikhi Phifer)is having trouble securing employment because of his stint in prison. The family manages to handle their differences until Big Mama is incapacitated by illness and can no longer be peacekeeper, but young Ahmad, seeing his family crumble, steps up to take up the slack. This entertaining comedy-drama has a surprisingly smart screenplay and first-rate performances, with young Hammond a standout. Lovely family drama that affectionately embraces the experience of a loving African American family. And the food looks delicious!


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