Madea's Big Happy Family (2011)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  22 April 2011 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.4/10 from 5,888 users   Metascore: 45/100
Reviews: 34 user | 33 critic | 15 from

The crazy and comical Mabel Simmoms, otherwise known as Madea, tries to wrangle her fighting family together for a family dinner regarding the health of her niece Shirley.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Madea / Joe / Tyler Perry
Cora (as Tamela Mann)
Byron (as Shad 'Bow Wow' Moss)
Stevie Wash Jr. ...
Nicholas Milton ...
Benjamin 'LB' Aiken ...


Madea jumps into action when her niece, Shirley, receives distressing news about her health. All Shirley wants is to gather her three adult children around her and share the news as a family. But Tammy, Kimberly and Byron are too distracted by their own problems: Tammy can't manage her unruly children or her broken marriage; Kimberly is gripped with anger and takes it out on her husband; and Byron, after spending two years in jail, is under pressure to deal drugs again. It's up to Madea, with the help of the equally rambunctious Aunt Bam, to gather the clan together and make things right the only way she knows how: with a lot of tough love, laughter ... and the revelation of a long-buried family secret. Written by Lionsgate

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for drug content, language and some mature thematic material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

22 April 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Madea's Big Happy Family  »

Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$25,068,677 (USA) (22 April 2011)


$53,311,948 (USA) (15 July 2011)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The cast of the play the movie was based on were the chior that sung at sherly's funeral. See more »


When Cora and Brown are talking to the doctor, Cora picks up her purse and sets it down on the counter behind her. When the camera switches back her purse is sitting on the table between her and Brown again. See more »


Madea: Sit down you black leprechaun looking like you're out of a damn box of chocolate, lucky charms.
See more »


Referenced in Ties That Bind (2011) See more »


Written by John Austin, Nicole Cathren Bellinghausen, John D. Norten, Tyler Perry and Samuel Hall Zeines
Performed by Noelle, John Austin and Samuel Hall Zeines
Published by TYPEE Music (ASCAP), MY TY PE Music Publishing (BMI) and T PERRY PUBLISHING (SESAC)
Courtesy of Tyler Perry Studios
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User Reviews

Typical Tyler Perry fare. Nothing more, and nothing less.
22 September 2011 | by See all my reviews

I have to make a confession. I watch Tyler Perry's Madea films. OK, JUST HEAR ME OUT! Now, I think they're all FAR from perfect films, but at the very least, I do enjoy watching the portions featuring Madea. Such was the case of my latest viewing, Madea's Big Happy Family. It's a bit embarrassing to say, but let's just get down to my review.

First of all, we have a tangled web of subplots. The mother of a family, Shirley, is devastated to discover that her case of cancer has worsened, prompting her to plan a family dinner to tell her children about her condition. This includes her daughters, Kimberly and Tammy. Kimberly is a secretive woman (Improperly focused character #1), and Tammy is having trouble with her marriage, and her two disobedient children. This also includes Byron, a man on an unlucky streak, having served jail time for selling drugs, and behind on paying child support to his insufferably obnoxious ex-girlfriend. There's also some drama between Cora and Mr. Brown. But leave it to Madea to set things straight, and not be afraid to beat the living hell out of anyone who steps out of line.

This movie is textbook Tyler Perry. As always, he gathers together a cast that could have been quite good, with good material, but their characters are inconsistently written, and their focus tends to blur because the script is overly cluttered with subplots. It's not a problem because they're hard to follow (They really aren't), but it's because it doesn't give these characters all the attention they deserve.

This isn't even mentioning Tyler Perry's ubiquitous switch in tone. His rhythm moves as comedic scene, dramatic scene, comedic scene, etc. I think the comedy portions are better than the dramatic portions, but the flip flopping between the two makes things feel dull. At the end of the day, I didn't emotionally connect with the story like I feel I should have. For once, I wish Perry would construct a film that's sure of what it wants to be.

I give it ** out of ****

3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Why hate? ndzyne
Um, what exactly is a 'black' miovie? JacquesStrappe
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ONLY people who saw the film dctisnum1
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