Though it's been some twenty years since they have spoken with one another, two estranged soul-singing legends agree to participate in a reunion performance at the Apollo Theater to honor their recently deceased band leader.
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When R&B legend Marcus Hooks dies suddenly, VH-1 invites his original back up duo, Floyd Henderson and Louis Hinds, "The Real Deal," to appear at a memorial tribute at the Apollo Theater. Floyd, who's bored in retirement, wants this more than anything; Louis, a philosophical ex-con, does not. Plus, there's bad blood between them (Louis's wife Odetta left him to marry Floyd - then left Floyd). Floyd begs, Louis consents but won't fly, so they leave L.A. in Floyd's flashy Cadillac with five days to get to New York. On the road, they must get back their vocal chops, renew their friendship, and sort out the past. With Floyd's bad hip and Louis's bad kidneys, will they even make it? Written by
I had a chance to see an advance screening of Soul Men and I must say it's a highly enjoyable comedy that's a true testament to the comedic skills of both Samuel L. Jackson and the late great Bernie Mac. The trailer pretty much explains the plot, so there's no need to go into detail here but I will say that more than music the film for me was about the friendship between the characters portrayed by Mac & Jackson. Jackson who in my opinion has never handled lead comedic roles very well has a chance to shine here. As for Mac in his last role he's in top form and the comedic chemistry of the two is reminiscent of the Bill Cosby & Sidney Poitter vehicles of the seventies. As for the supporting roles Affion Crockett has a few scene stealing moments and the lovely Sharon Leal continues to make a name for herself. The direction by Malcolm D. Lee is sharp and on par with his previous films Roll Bounce & Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, while the script by Robert Ramsey and Matthew Stone is the duo's best script since 1999's Life. Watching the end credits of the film which is a heart warming tribute to Mac we given in a chance to look into a man who was more than a comic but an entertainer who loved his craft. Soul Men is a film filled with plenty of soul and is easily one of Mac's best films.
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