Baby Boy (2001) Poster

(2001)

User Reviews

Review this title
93 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
7/10
John Singleton hits young black men in the nutz
SnoopyStyle30 November 2013
Director John Singleton hits the black manhood where it hurts. His theme for the movie from the start is that black men in America are little more than babies. He rails against the culture that infantilize them and the men who live that way.

Joseph Summers (Tyrese Gibson) is a young black man struggling to get by. He lives with his mama (Candy Ann Brown). His baby mama Yvette (Taraji P. Henson) is frustrated with him. She starts going with gangster Rodney (Snoop Dogg). His mother has a new boyfriend Mel (Ving Rhames) who's done time.

It's very tough. Joseph makes mistakes. He's an idiot at times, but he isn't a bad guy. Tyrese Gibson doesn't allow him to play the fool in this. He instills the character with humanity even when things are at the lowest. If there is one message, I think Singleton is trying to tell young black men to get their sh14 together.
5 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Reaching the Maturity in a Dangerous Ghetto
claudio_carvalho18 July 2005
Jody (Tyrese Gibson) is an immature unemployed Afro-American, living with his mother in a ghetto and having a son with his girl-friend Yvette (Taraji P. Henson), but not assuming a family of his own and not being faithful to Ivette. Jody has a serious Oedipus complex problem and Sweetpea (Omar Gooding) is his best-friend. When his mother gets a new boy-friend, the dangerous Melvin (Ving Rhames), and the former boy-friend of Yvette, Rodney (Snoop Dogg), leaves the prison on probation, Jody has to find a destination to his life.

"Baby Boy" is not the best work of John Singleton. Although having a great performance of the Afro-American cast, the story about reaching the maturity in a dangerous ghetto is too long and all the characters are non-charismatic. It takes too much time for the twist point and I really did not like this movie. Maybe American viewers, who live closer to this reality, may appreciate "Baby Boy". My vote is five.

Title (Brazil): "Baby Boy – O Rei da Rua" ("Baby Boy – The King of the Street")
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
An intelligent and intensley emotional (including powerful) film by Singleton
Quinoa19841 July 2001
Baby Boy, the sequel-cum-remake of Singleton's last great feat Boyz 'N' the Hood, returns to the same neighborhoood 10 years later to look at new people in the hood, very personally at that, and it is fascinating.

The film stars in a debut of Tyrese Gibson (some may remember Cuba Gooding got his first speaking role with Boyz) as Jody, a boy (age 20) who still lives with his mother, is the father of 2 children from 2 different mothers, has no real job and often just hangs about complaining and being spoiled. The film looks at this character, but also the forces that sort of make him into what he is. It is a really good character portrait that also has some really fired up performances from Ving Rhames, as a new ex-con boyfriend of his mother, A.J. Johnson as the mother, Omar Gooding (Gooding Jr.'s brother) as Jody's good friend, especially Taraji P. Henson in one of the best female performances of the year as Jody's girlfriend and also mother of one of his children, and of course, Snoop Dogg as a version of himself (albiet evil). It's a delight from the streak of not that good movies out now, and it should be able to appeal to both black and white audiences. Definately reccomended. A-
16 out of 20 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Sociology at its Best-Language at Worst Describes Baby Boy**1/2
edwagreen30 January 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Sociologists would have a field day with this film. Given the current state of things, it's amazing that African-Americans have not picketed this film due to its extremely negative stereotyping of black life in America.

Black men are depicted as shiftless tramps, hustlers and just general low-lives. Ditto for women.

The language here is absolutely disgusting to say the least. You can't get through a sentence without b and f bombs being hurled at each other.

How old is Tyrese Gibson's mom in this film? She must have had him when she was 14 or so.

How horrible that the killing is never solved by police officials.

These negative things being said, our sociologists would view this film positively claiming that it gives an adequate description of black life.

Where are our so called black activists in protesting this film? I thought I was back in the New York City classroom or other large urban school setting. What a disgusting film to show to all groups. Talk of reviving of racial prejudice, this was really off the wall.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Not as Good as Other Singleton Works
view_and_review23 January 2021
"Baby Boy" begins with underwater sounds then an image fades in of a grown man apparently in the womb; bare, eyes closed, with amniotic fluid and other amniotic material around him. Then a voice chimes in quoting Dr. Frances Cress Welsing saying that because of the racist system in this country, the Black man has come to think of himself as a baby. To support her theory she cites that many Black men call their woman "mama," their friends are their "boys," and their home is their "crib."

Since we're quoting Dr. Frances Cress Welsing, I'll go further and cite some more of what she says in her book "The Isis Papers:"

"To begin with, Black males in particular...refer to the white male as 'The Man.' If the white male is 'The Man,' meaning logically 'The only Man,' then any other male must be one of the four remaining people categories--'boy,' 'girl,' 'woman' or 'baby.'"

This is the foundation of the late John Singleton's movie "Baby Boy." Our "baby boy" of note is Joseph "Jody" Summers (Tyrese Gibson); a young man with two babies, two "baby mamas," no job, no car, and still living at home with his mother Juanita (A.J. Johnson).

The movie takes place in one of the 'hood's of Los Angeles with a similar, if more comedic, tone of "Boyz n the Hood." "Baby Boy" follows Jody throughout his daily life: visiting his two kids and their mothers, Peanut (Tamara Bass) and Yvette (Taraji P. Henderson) whom he supposedly loves and is exclusively involved with.

As aggravating as the movie is most of the time, I see it acting as a mirror for men like Jody, reflecting back upon them the absurdity that the rest of the world sees. I didn't find this movie as enjoyable or fulfilling as some of Singleton's other works. It wasn't totally irredeemable, but it still seemed to lack an impactful message. A movie like this either serves to reinforce the negative stereotype of Black men or serve as a wake up call to Black men such as Jody, his friend Sweetpea (Omar Gooding), or his nemesis Rodney (Snoop Dogg). I, for one, wasn't a fan of the ugly ghetto depiction of the Black men on screen, but I'm just a consumer of art, not an artist.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
All Grown Up.
anaconda-406589 July 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Baby Boy (2001): Dir: John Singleton / Cast: Tyrese Gibson, Omar Gooding Jr., Ving Rhames, Snoop Dogg, Adrienne-Joi Johnson: Inspiring film about growing up with Tyrese Gibson as a twenty year old who lives at home but he is a father himself of two children by different women. He drives his girlfriend home from the abortion clinic then he borrows her car to go visit other women. To make money he resorts to selling stolen female clothing. His sister is involved with an ex con who is trying to go straight. Outside the house Gibson is involved in gang wars with his best friend. His girlfriend's ex-boyfriend is getting out of prison and decides to move in with her. The conclusion is violent and somewhat corrupt but director John Singleton who is famous for Boyz N the Hood establishes interesting visual moments. Gibson is superb as a young man pretending to grip reality rather than face adulthood even though some decisions were extremely unwise. Omar Gooding Jr. as his best friend is into gang wars and finalizing one of Gibson's personal wars. Snoop Dogg makes a good impression as a criminal who forces his way and meets consequences. Ving Rhames is compelling as an ex-con building for acceptance. Adrienne-Joi Johnson plays Gibson's mother who urges him to grow up. Theme addresses women involved with men who aren't emotionally ready to commit. Score: 9 / 10
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Explicit lifestyle not held back
StevePulaski13 June 2011
John Singleton concludes what he calls his "Hood trilogy" with his 2001 installment Baby Boy. It centers around an immature, twenty year old black man nicknamed Jody (Gibson) who lives with his mom and his fathering two young kids from separate women. His mom gets a new boyfriend named Melvin (Rhames) who is what Jody calls "a thug," much to his dismay. More things in Jody's life including friendships, relationships, and family begin to crumble throughout the film when Jody realizes he must grow up.

Singleton has successfully made a brutally honest, cut throat, and raw look at the real hood. Not the glorified, Imma-shoot-me-a-thug-and-get-me-a-bitch-cause-this-the-good-life hood. It's almost a documentary style look at what a black area looks like. It goes beyond the stereotypes, and treats these people like real human beings, what they are, not what they are assumed to be.

Some blacks do bad, but some try to do right is why I picked up from Baby Boy. Here we have a mama's boy who needs to let his mom live her own life and let himself live his own. It sounds a lot easier than it is. His mom has been in an abusive relationship before, and now Jody does what anyone in his position would, be worried and overprotective.

The trailer for Baby Boy suggests that it has a strong comedic side. That it doesn't. It has some brave wit in a few scenes with mild humor popping up, other than that, it's a strange forward piece of drama. There is nothing funny about that plot and it shouldn't have been marketed like "a lot of fun." The casting, like in Singleton's previous works, is spot on and worthwhile. We get Tyrese Gibson giving his macho, but softie image. Snoop Dogg, who on the cover appears as Gibson's friend in the film, is far from it probably sporting the toughest and strongest image of mean he's most likely ever done. Rhames' role as the out-of-prison thug is very well captured and powerful just like anticipated. And the rest of the cast supports the leads well and efficient.

Baby Boy manages to mix itself in with other hood comedies and concert documentaries on the Black Entertainment Network (BET) most likely to show that there is a reality to everyone's dreams. BET most likely shows the film not only because it is urban inspired, but because it is real. It shouldn't be only aired on the black network, but regular movie networks regularly. Blacks aren't the only people who father babies and live at home in an uninspired way feeding off of their moms. People of all races most likely do it too. The film just focuses around a black family.

Ten years old, but still recognized as an effective drama, Baby Boy is a wakeup call to anyone practicing similar behavior. It's time to step up, be a man, and grow up. Life isn't a free ride. Working is hard, but gang life is no way to patch it. It sounds cliché, but like everything shown in Baby Boy, it's the harsh truth.

Starring: Tyrese Gibson, Omar Gooding, Ving Rhames, Taraji P. Henson, A.J. Johnson, and Snoop Dogg. Directed by: John Singleton.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Singleton's worst
=G=8 November 2001
With Singleton at the helm of the "Baby Boy" production and rave reviews from many critics, I was sorely disappointed to find this turkey a numbing and disjointed narrative which jumps from one rant to another as it peers into the lives of a bunch of stereotypical genital obsessed black Los Angelinos. An attempt to portray the futility of one shiftless man's growing up black in Watts while wrestling with the responsibilities of manhood, "Baby Boy" loses itself in itself as it buries whatever social message was to be had in too much redundant clutter. Recommended only for those who can make the huge leap of faith required to buy into a film which is obviously just another commercial Hollywood copycat Afro-Am hood drama.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Hard hitting but seldom seen sequel to Boys in the Hood.
Captain_Couth26 February 2005
Baby Boy (2001) has to be the best film John Singleton has made in his decade and a half directorial career. What separates this movie from others is how real life the situations are in this movie. People like this exist in all different races, ethnicities and social standings. I guess people were turned off by the "gangsta" element. I don't know why because it's just an excellent film that has brilliant acting and writing. Surprise is an understatement, when I saw this movie on video I couldn't believe that this was made by the same director who made Shaft and that schlocky Higher Learning. Too bad Singleton had to sell out again and make Too Fast, Too Furious.

The movie follows the life of Jody, an unemployed roustabout who has two kids with two different women. He doesn't do anything and whines to anyone who'll listen to him. Jody takes no responsibility for his actions and blames them on others. One day his life begins to change when his mother get's involved with a world wise former knuckle head (VIng Rhames). Even though his actions and words are too straight forward for a young pup like Jody, he tries to get him to look at life from a reality perspective instead of hanging on his mother's apron strings. Jody likes to run around with his buddy Sweetpea and spend time with his babies momma. One of his girlfriends has a man (Snoop Dogg) who's waiting to get out of the pen and claim what he thinks is his. Can Jody get his life together or will the streets and his own stupidity and lack of accepting adulthood bring him down.

Like I said, this is a great movie that was over looked by the viewing public. John Singleton should make more movies like this instead of trying to make a block buster. If you want to see a hard hitting drama that'll entertain as well as educate, this is the film for you.

Highest recommendation possible.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
good talent elevates some of the more familiar elements
Special-K8819 January 2017
Coming-of-age story set in South Central Los Angeles is director John Singleton's "counterpart" to his 1991 debut Boyz n the Hood about a puerile, twenty-year-old black youth named Jody who lives at home, mooches off his mother, and refuses to embrace manhood despite having fathered two children with two different women. His life reaches a crossroads when his mother's ex-con boyfriend-turned-legitimate businessman Melvin (Rhames) moves into their house, and his girlfriend's volatile ex Rodney (Snoop Dogg) is released from prison. Covers familiar ground, to be sure, and is excessively raunchy at times, but there and poignant and compelling themes, startling, authentic scenes, and top shelf acting from a supremely talented cast. ***
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
"Baby Boy" - Growing up in the 'hood
dee.reid15 February 2020
The late John Singleton's sixth directorial effort, 2001's "Baby Boy," opens with a factoid that may come as alarmingly accurate to its core audience: young black men in America, who according to a completely plausible theory put forth by a prominent psychiatrist, because of racism, have been reduced to thinking of themselves as children ("baby boys"). To support the claim, the film notes that young black men call their women "mama," their closest friends "boys," and their place of residence as "the crib."

(Does anyone else reading this think that sounds familiar?)

This sets up the central theme of "Baby Boy," which is about immature young black men being forced to grow up into manhood. Similar territory was covered in Singleton's ground-breaking debut feature, "Boyz N the Hood" (1991), and Singleton returns to the same 'hood - South Central Los Angeles - older, wiser, more mature. Like "Boyz N the Hood," Singleton brings life to his story and doesn't paint his characters in broad strokes; there is a wonderful life in the dangerous inner-city, people with hopes and dreams of wanting more out of life than just drugs, money, women, and swagger.

"Baby Boy" can be thought of as a companion piece of sorts to "Boyz N the Hood," since it returns to its central theme of young black men in the inner-city and growing up into manhood. His protagonist is 20-year-old Jody (r & b/soul singing sensation Tyrese Gibson, in his film debut), who still lives at home with his mother Juanita (A.J. Johnson), is unemployed and doesn't even bother looking for work, and spends his days mooching money off her and hanging out on the streets with his best friend Sweetpea (Omar Gooding), who is now hanging out with dangerous gang types.

Jody is also a young father himself, since he has children by two different women - Yvette (Taraji P. Henson) and Peanut (Tamara LaSeon Bass). It's Yvette that Jody obviously loves, but he still sees Peanut on a regular basis. Yvette loves Jody and he loves her, but she is also growing increasingly fed up with his lies and messing around with other women, and taking her car - which she is making payments on. (There is some bold logic to his rationale for his actions: he lies to her because he loves her.) But he picks her up from work everyday, fixes her car when it needs fixing, pays her phone bill, and cares lovingly for their young son. So, she sticks around with him.

Conflict arises on two fronts for Jody, that will force him to stop being a Baby Boy and hopefully become a man. On one front, his mother, who is also growing fed up with taking care of Jody and wants a life of her own, takes up with Melvin (Ving Rhames), a former convict who now owns a landscaping business and wants desperately to go straight and have a second chance at love & happiness (which he hopes he'll get with Juanita). He has insight and wisdom that Jody would do good to try to learn from, because he's been there and "done it all to the full." He was once like Jody at one point - "young, dumb, and out of control" - but 10 years in prison changed all that. But still, he's a no-nonsense character and has little patience for Jody's immaturity. Likewise, Jody fears with absolute certainty that his mother will ultimately choose Melvin over him.

On the other front, Yvette's ex-con ex-boyfriend Rodney (Snoop Dogg) is back in the picture. He mocks Jody's immaturity and for taking Yvette from him and having a baby with her. But Jody is quick to shoot back that he's been in prison, broke, has no place to live, and thus has nothing of value to say about how Jody is living his life. It won't take a rocket scientist to figure out where their rivalry is headed...

"Baby Boy" is a film that works so well because it plays to John Singleton's strengths of breathing life into the 'hood and making it seem like a real place where real people live, and not just some urban hell on earth - mainly because its key piece of authenticity is the fact that Singleton came from these streets himself and knows what it's like out there. And the characters he paints for his films contain aspects of himself and people he knows. And there is also a certain amount of truth into one of the film's underlying assertions that Singleton is openly condemning the selfish, immature behavior of its central character, while still showing him as a complex individual who still has a lot of growing up to do and is ultimately a good person deep down inside. In fact, Jody can be seen as a placeholder for any young man in the audience watching.

The Los Angeles 'hood was a different place at the time of "Baby Boy's" release in 2001, 10 years after "Boyz N the Hood." John Singleton decided to revisit South Central once more, with similar ideas in mind about manhood but with a decidedly narrowed focus, and he succeeded. He presented "Baby Boy," which is another one of the best and most truthful depictions about the lives of young black men in America.

Bravo, Sir.

8/10
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Very good, if you like this sort of thing
vchimpanzee2 February 2005
As a white person who doesn't live in 'the hood', I have a hard time identifying with the characters in this movie.

Still, it was worth seeing for some very good performances. Ving Rhames as Jody's mother's boyfriend, Tyrese as Jody, Taraji Henson as Jody's girlfriend Yvette, A. J. Johnson as Jody's mother. Cuba Gooding's brother Omar is as talented as his brother. Even Snoop Dogg did a capable job as Yvette's former boyfriend. He couldn't compare with the fine performers around him, but he does have the potential for a career outside the rap world.

I was amazed at how gentle Jody was with Yvette. The stereotype is for someone like him to be abusive, but he only came close when really pushed, and most of us would not be that patient. The writers didn't rely on easy solutions to problems, and people worked things out by making an effort.

The nightmares and fantasies got annoying for me, and I believe the actors themselves did not know how the movie would end because all these different scenes were filmed. Still, it was well done overall.

I'm so glad I saw a cleaned-up version, but the film was still quite potent. It's certainly not for kids.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Baby boy not a day goes by...
raulfaust8 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This movie deserves some recognition for a lot of reasons. First, the plot is very well written; there are interesting (and plausible) situations happening all the time, most of them showing aspects of ordinary lives. Every step characters do is justified, bringing realism to the film. Actors involved in this project are extremely professional-- and unintentionally hilarious--, with highlights to Taraji P. Henson, who surprised me. Yvette feels incongruent when allows Joe Joe standing alone in the same room as Rodney, but that may show the lack of responsibility she could have had. The main analogy between an immature man and a baby is quite smart, and everyone is capable to relate with such character. That happens because in current societies, it's getting longer and longer the time for the kids to leave parents' house. We all have the kangaroo syndrome, and it amazes me that in 2001 John Singleton could have made a movie with this subject. The only thing that I didn't enjoy was the poor acting coming from Snoop Dogg; it feels like he's just playing himself-- despite the violent behavior, which I have no information of. All in all, "Baby Boy" is a refreshing movie that I recommend to everyone who enjoys dramas and real life problems.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
B.G. - Baby Gangsta
PredragReviews31 May 2016
Singleton's solid direction didn't save the uneven pacing of this film , and not only the pacing, there's a lot of Gap that occurred here, i don't know what it is exactly but probably the lack of resolution and the absence of consequences that suppose to be given to some of the lead characters, i don't know maybe its just me. The story opens with a fresh sequence on the definition of why a black male is defined as a baby boy, we are then introduced with the title character , Jody , A 20 yr old unachieving young man trying to break free off the directionless life on the street but seems to do little about it,instead he prefers the good old in and out and sampling other local females, despite already giving babies to his steady girlfriend and another mistress type of woman,oh yes, he also lives with his young mom who still samples on different type of thug boyfriends, that is until the biggest thug,Melvin aka Ving Rhames came by , took the heart of mom, and leave Jody with Oedipus angst, now i leave it to here, since it is really hard to break down a summary for this one, every scenes seems to be working like a mini episodes of themselves, which is also the weakness of this film.

It really had potential to be a classic movie, but you're never really sure whether it is meant to be a comedy, drama or a thriller as all of these aspects are thrown in there, but it often leaves you wondering what is going on. Ving's character had potential to be a real strong, powerful character that you could learn lessons from etc and to an extent he is, however, it is undermined by the regular and frequent comedic turns he is asked to perform throughout the movie. Don't get me wrong, they are funny, but like i said, the film's issues in my opinion are too serious to warrant it. The main character Jodie is not likable, and i feel he is supposed to be a bit of an antihero type, but he simply doesn't come across like that, due to partly not great acting, and bad writing. That sadly, is the case for the whole movie, Henson's acting is superb as always, but the script is corny and cliché'd. Sometimes it works, some times it doesn't. I'm a fan of hip hop, and hood movies too, and this is still probably one of the better ones. Even though i've pointed out the bad points, i would still watch this again sometimes for the moments that are memorable.

Overall rating: 6 out of 10.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Unintentionally funny drama
elliotjeory27 May 2018
I first watched this film years ago. The drama is so over the top it's hilarious. I fast forwarded to the key scenes because they are genuinely good but overall it's a letdown because of the meladrama. Please believe me.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
An unflinching analysis of black youth in America
baumer1 July 2001
The Wayans brothers were commended for their work on Scary Movie because of the levity involving their black characters. Many of them were made fun of, ridiculed or died in heinous ways that only another black auteur could do or risk being ridiculed in society and from critics of all colours. John Singleton has taken on that same risk but with a more serious subject matter. And let's face it, if Robert Zemekis or Steven Spielberg or even Quentin Tarantino attempted subject matter like this, they would at best be dismissed as being misinformed and at worst they would be ostracized by both races as being racist. But when a director like John Singleton writes, produces, and directs material like this, we all stand up and listen. He is after all the man that gave us Boyz N The Hood. So if the man has something to say, then we all had better listen.

Baby Boy explores the mercurial world of black youth in America. It's very foundation is one that believes that black men are subject to racism but they use that very excuse as one to keep them down. This is a film that tells us that black men may all have it hard but it is up to them to make the right choices and think before they act. We all have problems and we all have to deal with adversity. And there is no panacea to cure all of Pandora's diseases that we all breath in. Dealing with the trials and tribulations of our lives is what makes us adults or what keeps us as the children that we are.

Tyrese plays Jody, a 20-year-old mama's boy that still lives with momma even though he has fathered two children and just made his girl have an abortion for another. He has no responsibilities, pays no bills and yet manages to mac his way into many women's lives because of his good looks and smooth charm. But now his mother is growing tired of his act and she has met a new man named Marvin. Marvin is played with utter conviction by Ving Rhames. This is a man that was once just like Jody. He grew up in the hood and did favours for people. When those favours led to murder, he went to jail for 10 years and did hard time. So he knows where Jody is coming from. He can see a lot of himself in Jody and as much as he wants to keep Jody from following the same path he did, he generally keeps his nose out of his business. I think the Marvin character is the most pivotal one in the film. This is a man that has done it all, seen it all and now has chosen to go the straight and narrow. He owns his own landscaping business, he has a girlfriend and he has learned to harness his temper and put things in perspective. He could probably return to his roots and make some easy money but he knows that there are more important things in life. His freedom is one of them. This is the man that Jody should be learning from. This is the man that we should all be learning from. And Rhames nails him perfectly. Rhames has charisma. He has panache and he has something intangible about him. He, along with Benitio Del Toro have to be the finest actors in Hollywood right now and this role showcases not only his natural acting ability but just how buff he has become since his turn as Marcellus Wallace in Pulp Fiction.

Baby Boy covers a plethora of issues that black youth have to deal with and Singleton doesn't paint a pretty picture of the way they handle these issues. There were times when I wanted to laugh at the stupidity of these characters and there were times when I was in so much disgust that I wanted to leave the theater. This is a film that has so many players, so many weak women that can't live without a man, so many couples that figure the best way to solve a problem is to have orgasms, so many gangsters that can't accept their second chance and try to live a better life and so many young people making bad decisions. When there is a thug in your house and he is on parole, here's a piece of advise, call the police. Don't just put up with whatever it is that they tell you to do. So many issues would be solved in this film if everybody wasn't so weak. If people could just learn to stand on their own two feet, then they wouldn't be in some of the predicaments that they are. The black youth portrayed in the film are ripe with temerity, and I applaud John Singleton for painting it that way. I just wonder if this film will help anyone that it speaks to, or if it will just be another film that we all see and then forget about until it comes out on video?

8 out of 10- This is not as slick as Boyz N The Hood but it is certainly a film that is enjoyable and has much to say. It should be seen by all just for those reasons alone. Oh, and Ving Rhames strutting his proverbial skills is another reason.

Hail to Ving!
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
One of the best films of the summer 2001
DunnDeeDaGreat21 October 2001
Baby Boy was one of the best film to be released in the summer. The film which tells the story of a man who needs to grow up, really hit home for guys who live in single parents with their mothers. The acting is exceptional in particular Tyrese who plays Jody. Snoop is also good as Rodney as is Omar Gooding. The best acting job comes from Ving Rhames as Jody's mom's new man and Taraji P. Henson as Jody's girl. This film is highly recommended. The only ones who didn't like it were those who didn't understand the message.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Was missing something...
mattymatt4ever20 November 2001
John Singleton has definitely proved to be one of our best up-and-coming directors in the biz. And this film does show off his talent to a good degree. The characters are well-developed. The camerawork is excellent. Singleton definitely went into this project with good intentions. But there was something about the way it was executed that just didn't work.

The acting is terrific. Tyrese, who's never been in any previous films, is a natural. He's absolutely superb, and it's very hard to tell that this was his first movie. I'm not a fan of his music, but now I know in case his music career fails, he has something to fall back on. Ving Rhames is great as the new man in Jodie's (Tyrese) mother's life. It's nice to see Ving really advance as an actor. This is a role that allows him to be more of a character, rather than the bulky, don't-mess-with-me bodyguard that lingers in the background. I would say this performance and his performance in "Bringing Out the Dead" are the highlights are of his career. Omar Gooding--Cuba's brother--is also great. It's great to see him advance as well. I remember when he used to host the show "Wild and Crazy Kids" on Nickelodeon and do guest spots on "Hangin' with Mr. Cooper." He proves, in this movie, that talent really runs in the Gooding family.

Of course, at two hours and ten minutes the film goes on pretty long. Too long for its own good. And I didn't know why, but the drama in this film just didn't have much power to it. With the exception of one climactic scene in which Tyrese is about to shoot Ving, and there's a silent exchange between the two of them, I just didn't feel compelled. Definitely not as much as I was when watching "Boyz N the Hood."

On a comic level, the film actually works quite well. I assumed, since it's a John Singleton film, there wouldn't be much humor. But I was wrong. Seeing Snoop Dogg on the DVD cover was a little bit of a letdown. Luckily, he doesn't get a big part in the film and they probably just gave him second billing 'cause many people love Snoop. I don't hate him, I think he's a good rapper, but as an actor he has virtually no substance. Speaking of which, I liked the theme song to "Baby Boy" by Tyrese and Snoop. It plays intermittently throughout the film, and it's a great, head-bopping tune.

There's a good deal of positive things I can say about this movie, but overall I felt it didn't come together tightly. Plus, it was long and dragged at points.

My score: 6 (out of 10)
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Fascinating. Singleton's best?
TOMASBBloodhound5 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Baby boy is the story of a young man, who apparently like many others in the inner-city, refuses to accept the duties and responsibilities of adulthood. He doesn't wish to "leave the nest" as his mother suggests he do in an early scene. Jody Summers, played by the charismatic Tyrese Gibson, is a representation for the kind of man Singleton wishes to indict with his film. Jody is twenty years old. He still lives with his mother, he has no steady job, he has children with two different women (that we know of), no car.... the list goes on. We see an intelligence within the young man that at times wants to bubble to the surface, but always seems to get stifled by bad decisions that usually involve women.

In the first scene, we see Jody pick up his main-stay girlfriend (Taraji P. Henson) from the abortion clinic. After bringing her home and lovingly tucking her into bed, he's off with her car to visit the mother of another of his children. Jody really gets around with the ladies. But instead of marrying one of them or at least moving in with them, he prefers to live at home with his mother. One day there is great big surprise waiting at home when he arrives. His mother his a new man (Ving Rhames), and the two are crazy about each other. Melvin, a reformed criminal, intends to move in, and that leaves Jody feeling the pressure to move out and start an adult life of his own. Things are also complicated by the release from prison of Snoop Dog. He is a former boyfriend of Jody's woman, and he shows up at her place uninvited and looking for trouble.

The film is a series of fights (both verbal and physical), make-up sessions, explicit sex, shootings, and thoughtful insight. The film is cast to perfection, and the pacing is without peer for this type of film. At 130 minutes, the film never outstays its welcome. There is a ton of profanity, and acrimony between the major players. Will Jody decide to grow up and marry the woman he loves? Will he ever see eye to eye with his mother's new boyfriend? Will Snoop Dogg get what's coming to him? Let's just say that things end up happy on most counts. I wish, along with Director John Singleton, that there would be more happy endings in the lives of these kinds of people.

These characters, and the world they live in, are as far from anything I've ever experienced in my own lifetime as they could be. It is a credit to John Singleton that he could make me care so much about them in this terrific film. The film made a decent profit at the theater, and will continue to be appreciated for years on the DVD market.

8 of 10 stars.

The Hound.
2 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Interesting film.
wkozak22128 September 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I watched this film. It brought back bad memories of my ex fiancee and her family. I am white.She and her family were/are black. The family was dysfunctional just like in the film. They allowed things to just happen just like in the film. My fiancee tried to get three guys to beat me up on the street for no reason. Luckily the police arrested her. To me this is a huge warning of how families should not act/live.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
All about Jody - a poignant and frank look at a young man desperately needs to grow up
ruby_fff21 July 2001
John Singleton's films can be so gutsy. He does not 'pussyfoot' around the storyline, nor the language/spoken words involved. He stands by the character of the characters. (Boyz N the Hood 1991; Poetic Justice 1993; Rosewood 1996.) The story has genuine substance and no frills. In "Baby Boy", Tyrese Gibson's Jody is surely one who pussyfoots around life, living at his mother's house, driving his girlfriend Yvette's car, certainly a Mama's boy without himself realizing he's not behaving quite yet like a (grown/mature) man at 20. Ving Rhames as his mother's lover man around the house is the contrasting model of a mature man next to Jody. It's a hard, up-front and honest look at the love-hate, tug-of-war relationship between Jody and Yvette, the young man and the young woman, the macho and the overly sensitive aspects that young couples have.

As we are wrapped up in the ups and downs of Jody and Yvette, the arguments between them, it may not be immediately obvious what a powerful social statement the director is making. There are frank languages, and bold, intimate scenes on screen. NFE (Not for everyone.) It's good for 20 something's and above. For parents, too. Respect on both sides are required in a family where the young and the grownups need to live with each other - actively listen and understand each other, together.

Very strong casting besides Tyrese as Jody and Ving Rhames as Melvin. There's Taraji P. Henson as Jody's woman Yvette; A.J. Johnson as Jody's Mom Juanita; and Omar Gooding as Jody's buddy Sweetpea.

For a while, it may seem nothing much is happening other than the back and forth following Jody: at home with Mom, at Yvette's lazing around and playing with his son, bantering with buddy Sweetpea and trying to sell stuff on the streets to no avail…but when conflict arises and sparks action in motion, the film's rhythm changes and you're 'jolted' back into conscious reality of the scheme of things. Life changes inevitably, whether you like it or not. Jody definitely has to shape up and cross over to grownup land.

Singleton is truly skillful and sensitive at his art of depicting on film the various aspects of life in the Hood. Bravo to his efforts of "Baby Boy."
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Just another day around the way.
CriticsVoiceVideo24 February 2021
A slice of life and pretty accurate depiction of a certain place and it's people. I've known people like this and all of the actors do a good job except Snoop Dogg, who leaves much to be desired. However, it's the tone of this movie that bothers me, especially given all the pathetic and despicable characters.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Good.
David, Film Freak4 August 2002
R&B Crooner Tyrese takes a stab at acting in this realistic film about 'Baby Boy' . He thinks he's a man... he's got 2 kids. But really, he's just a baby who doesn't want to leave the cosy confines of his momma's house. There's no actual real plot-line to this movie, it's basically just an excerpt from Baby Boy's life - detailing his relationships with his mother, his kids, his kid's mothers and his mother's new man. Rapper Snoop Dogg also appears in this, as a rather nasty-lookin ex-boyfriend of Tyrese's woman. Fine directing, strong acting, a good metaphorical element about him being in the womb and sly humour make Baby Boy a good watch... although those sexually inhibited might find this a bit strong!
15 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
John Singleton's Urban Drama Hood Baby Boy is Okay Of a Film About Bring An Adulthood And Growing Up.
mrs-6110225 February 2021
Tyrese Gibson First Breakthrough Role Stars As a Man Living At Home With His Mother And Has a Decent Job And Different Girlfriends including One That's Pregnant And He Learns About The Real World And What it is To Be Responsible For Yourself. The Film Also Stars Snoop Dogg, Ving Rhames And Taraji P. Henson in Her First Role Too While The Film is Directed By John Singleton.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed