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A day in the life of a barbershop on the south side of Chicago. Calvin, who inherited the struggling business from his deceased father, views the shop as nothing but a burden and waste of his time. After selling the shop to a local loan shark, Calvin slowly begins to see his father's vision and legacy and struggles with the notion that he just sold it out. The barbershop is filled with characters who share their stories, jokes, trials and tribulations. In the shop we find Eddie, an old barber with strong opinions and no customers. Jimmy is a highly educated barber with a superiority complex who can't stand Isaac, the new, white barber who just wants a shot at cutting some hair. Ricky is an ex-con with two strikes against him and is desperately trying to stay straight. Terri is a hard-edged woman who can't seem to leave her two-timing boyfriend. And lastly there's Dinka, a fellow barber who is madly in love with Terri but doesn't get the time of day. Written by
An uneven but mostly entertaining comedy/drama, "Barbershop" stars Ice Cube as Calvin, the owner of a neighborhood barbershop that has been passed down in his family through the generations. Of course, it's more than just a barbershop; it's a cornerstone, where you go to laugh with friends and find out what's happening in the neighborhood. Unfortunately, that doesn't pay the bills, and Calvin, tired of barely scraping by, decides to sell the place to a local loan shark (Keith David).
The movie covers the events in and around the barbershop on the day Calvin sells it, changes his mind, and spends the rest of the day trying to get it back, along with several other sub-plots involving other characters in and around the shop (the most interesting being played by Cube and Cedric the Entertainer, both terrific actors).
Whenever the movie stays in the barbershop, it's usually a lot of fun, with some good, entertaining dialogue and witty interplay between the many characters (both barbers and customers). However, the film frequently cuts to an annoying and mostly unfunny sub-plot about two bumbling crooks (Anthony Anderson and Lahmard Tate) trying to break into a stolen ATM machine. This is almost entirely unrelated to anything else in the film, and even though it connects with the main plot at the end, it still feels like dead weight that could have easily been entirely cut from the movie.
This is a good movie, full of heart and worth checking out just for the performances by Cube and Cedric, as well as the good tunes on the soundtrack. It just has a few too many dry stretches and the irritating ATM sub-plot, which holds me back from whole-heartedly recommending it.
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