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First Sunday (2008)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 11 January 2008 (USA)
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Durell Washington and LeeJohn Jackson are best friends and bumbling petty criminals. When Durell learns that his ex-girlfriend plans to move to another state with their son Durell Jr.--... See full summary »

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Storyline

Durell Washington and LeeJohn Jackson are best friends and bumbling petty criminals. When Durell learns that his ex-girlfriend plans to move to another state with their son Durell Jr.--unless they can get her $17,000 to pay off a debt-- and so Durell and LeeJohn ultimately comes up with a desperate scheme to rob their neighborhood church. But when the duo fumbles their way through the break-in, they discover someone has beaten them to the punch. In order to get their hands on the money, Durell and LeeJohn are forced to spend the night in the presence of the Lord and his followers--and end up getting a lot more than they bargained for. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Keep the faith. Steal the rest.

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, some sexual humor, and brief drug references | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

11 January 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Apateones tis plakas  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$17,714,821 (USA) (13 January 2008)

Gross:

$37,931,869 (USA) (24 February 2008)
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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ice Cube and Katt Williams previously worked together in Friday After Next (2002). See more »

Goofs

When Lee John gets rubbed down with baby oil, he says that he is a Leo, implying he knows when his birthday is. When everyone's eating chicken in the church, he later says he's never had a birthday party because he doesn't know when his birthday is. See more »

Quotes

Pastor Arthur Mitchell: [to the congregation] You have to ask yourself: Would a man rob God?
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Soundtracks

Smiley Precious Father
Written and Performed by Rob Lewis
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User Reviews

Subpar Comedy
11 January 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Let me see: It's January, and a film is released with a recognizable star and an obvious audience. Should be a winner? Nah! Not for nothing is this called the "dead season" or the "dumping ground" because almost all the films released at this time are potential losers, films deemed by their owners weak for a variety of reasons, but most certainly heading for panning by the critics.

First Sunday, a heist film set in a church, fulfills all the requirements for this notorious time of year: The plot is thin and almost silly: a couple of slackers decide to rob a local church in order to pay debts or salvage a family, mixing guilt with almost innocence; Ice Cube stars against his type as a robber with at heart and he produces, an act that guarantees this weak film distribution.

Yet, I liked First Sunday well enough to keep it from my slag heap of grade F. I liked the sub-textual seriousness of kids without dads, dads dealing with unemployment and disrespect, and mundane church matters. In addition, Cube (Durell) has a solid persona, not varying much each film, of an intelligent, serious but secretly warmhearted guy, a working stiff who just hasn't had the right breaks.

His sidekick LeeJohn (Tracy Morgan) provides the feckless, goofy, but lovable klutz, whose heart is bigger than Durell's. Beyond reasonable humor is Katt Williams' Rickey, a choirmaster with loopy observations and mannerisms. The women in the congregation serve as enablers for the errant crooks, and in one case, as major eye candy. Most of the characters in the film are shameless stereotypes.

The responsibility for this sub par comedy rests with writer director David E. Talbert, whose more that a dozen successful plays with heavy social themes remind of the success Tyler Perry has had with a similar profile. But Talbert lacks Perry's refinement of style and substance that deftly mixes broad comedy with social concerns. Talbert may never reach the success of Perry, but he should keep trying because social comedy is a powerful part of our popular culture.


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