Review: BIG MOMMAS: LIKE FATHER LIKE SON - About As Funny As Martin Lawrence's Recent Career

rating: 0.5

Once upon a time Martin Lawrence was funny. A scary thought but the evidence is all there online. His stand-up was genuinely entertaining and he showed promise in translating that for the big screen with the mid 90's hit Bad Boys but since then, his career has descended deeper and deeper into a hole from which I doubt he will ever emerge. Having watched both Big Momma's House and Big Momma's House 2 over the last few days I actually slightly disagree with Simon. The joke was never funny. Donning a wig and a fat suit and affecting a silly voice €“ comic potential do not maketh. But even if you did to raise a laugh for the first film's bawdy toilet humour you certainly did not for the frankly awful sequel and saying that the Big Momma franchise had run it's course is about as accurate as saying a piece of fossilised fruit is past it's sell by date. But now we have the third instalment: Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son... After step son Trent (Brandon T. Jackson), now adolescent and an aspiring rap sensation, accidentally witnesses a murder by a Russian gangster, our man Malcolm (Martin Lawrence) must go back undercover at an all girls art school passing off, the now wanted, Trent, as niece 'Charmaine' while he looks for the flash drive which will put said Russian €œaway for ever€. Of course this is a safer option than putting Trent in the best witness protection (which could be easily arranged by an FBI agent like Malcolm). No he should be taken right to the place where the criminals are likely to be and dressed as a highly convincing, if slightly manly, high school girl. This nonsense takes an inordinate amount of time to get the two back in the fat suits and rubber masks but I savoured every moment of this ludicrously contrived setup when compared to the moment when Big Momma and Charmaine arrive on the scene and all manner of 'comedy' hi-jinks begins. This is a film which thinks the only thing that could be funnier than a man dressed as a woman, is two men dressed as women; if they are father and son the laughter will be quadrupled. Fat people are absolutely hysterical, only topped in the comic stakes by regular people pretending to be fat. The Twister scene is perhaps the pinnacle of hilarity: not only is there a regular man dressed as a fat woman there is also a real fat man and they play Twister together! I think my sides are splitting. At least the first two films had length in their favour being ninety eight and ninety nine minutes respectively. This is one hundred and seven minutes long (and feels about three hours longer) with absolutely no justification. For God's sake The Seventh Seal is ninety six minutes, did this really have eleven minutes of better footage than that? In fact it was so boring it made me want to buy a plane ticket to L.A and personally buy Martin Lawrence a happy meal with my cinema fare rather than endure any more. You really do have to wonder who this is for. In the screening I was in there was a young kid sitting behind me. He laughed maybe three times to mine, and everyone else's, none. After ten minutes he said €œthis isn't funny€ then €œthis is awful Mum€ and finally €œwhen is it going to end?€. A more succinct or accurate review you will not find, I almost turned around to tell him he could have a great career as a film critic. Indeed it is impossible to overstate the film's lack of laughs. While it's vaguely misogynistic and homophobic undertones, not to mention highly questionable attitude towards obesity, verge on the extremely offensive, it's level of intergalactic stupidity really sets it apart. I used to think censorship was unnecessary, but movies where a man in a woman's fat suit (where you can quite clearly see the joins) posses nude in front of a class of high school girls, should not be allowed to exist. Please Martin no more Big Momma movies, trilogies were good enough for Francis Ford Coppola, Peter Jackson and George Lucas (sort of) it should be good enough for Big Momma. Big Momma's: Like Father, Like Son is out now in U.K. cinema's.
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