Nick Persons is a selfish player who owns a collectables sports shop in Vancouver. Everything in his life is perfect until he meets Suzanne Kingston, a business woman who has something Nick...
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Nick Persons is a selfish player who owns a collectables sports shop in Vancouver. Everything in his life is perfect until he meets Suzanne Kingston, a business woman who has something Nick hates - children: Lindsey and Kevin. Nick and Suzanne become friends and share good moments with each other. But Nick's peaceful life gets altered when Suzanne asks him to drive her kids to Vancouver. After the 3 miss a plane and then, train, they drive. Unfortunately, Kevin and Lindsey hate Nick, and he has to try to make it to Vancouver, unaware of the terror and torture he is in for.
The more I study film ideas, the more I'm amazed at how some ideas continue to live.
Take the notion of humorous cruelty. Were the Stooges the first to build a franchise around this? In modern times, it is the "Home Alone" franchise where we are given an excuse for accepting the cruelties because the hurter is a clever but innocent child and the hurtees are stereotypical bad guys.
Here the idea tries a new incarnation. Lest there be any mistake about the source, the movie actually starts in the "old" Home Alone mode with our (anonymous) victim encountering tripwires that trigger child-made traps of household goods and toys.
Then it shifts into the new mode. In this edition, some of the tricks are intended and some are not. The victim is a new kind of shiftless: a black man actually trying to be "ghetto." The story is supposed to smoothly morph in a sort of "What About Bob" way from pain to rewarding relationship. The turning point is also stereotypical: the treasured black dad has abandoned his family and the beleaguered suitor is revealed to be someone to whom that also happened.
I think humor about race, especially racial stereotypes, is fair game. How better to puncture racism? But its got to be funny doesn't it?
This picture turns out to be what it starts to be about: a way of torturing a black dude who manages a slick appearance of the ghetto (we're talking about the guy who calls himself Ice Cube here, not his character) and tries to put himself where he doesn't belong. Poignant maybe, but neither funny nor endearing.
Ted's Evaluation -- 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.
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