February 14, 2000 -- "Next Friday" is the very successful followup to "Friday," a surprise hit in 1995. I did not see the original. Previous management of the movie theaters in Laramie did not bring many black films here.
"Next Friday" is a film with extremely raunchy and offensive humor. In addition to the usual excrement and flatulence jokes and the vast quantity of obscenities, women are called bitches, the blacks call each other "nigger" countless times, and often in a derogatory way. I would think that black audiences would find it offensive. I sure did. Oh, I know the shock value of the word is supposed to make us laugh, but it is used so often the shock wears off. It is also supposed to be O.K. if it is used between friends, but this is overkill. Several blacks, main characters in the film in the film are portrayed as lazy, pot-smoking, cowardly thieves. Exactly how is that not offensive to blacks? Racial stereotypes abound in this film for Chicanos as well as blacks, and for what? To make a buck at the box office?
In the midst of all this is the only half-way normal character, Craig Jones (played by Ice Cube of "Three Kings"). Ice Cube also wrote the script, by the way, and he was executive producer of this film, go figure. His father (played by John Witherspoon of "Bullworth") brings him to the suburbs. Craig's uncle Elroy, (Don 'D.C.' Curry) has a nice house there that he bought with his lottery winnings. There's a foul-mouthed, but kind-hearted oriental woman next door, Miss Ho Kym (played by Amy Hill).
Trouble soon brews in the burbs, however, as Elroy could lose his house to a tax sale after squandering his money. Craig inadvertently gets his cousin fired from his job and then feels obligated to come up with a plan to get some money fast to help him and his father save their home. There's also a couple of menacing escaped convicts (probably left over from the first movie) in the mix. There's also the pretty girl next door, Karla (Lisa Rodríguez) and a mean-looking bull terrier.
The raunchy, offensive humor is bolstered by plenty of slapstick comedy and the occasional funny line of dialogue, but those lines are few and far between. I had a similar problem with this film that I did with the "South Park" movie. I just couldn't make out some of the dialogue, probably because I'm not familiar with the slang terms used. Maybe the movie was funnier than it seemed to me. This film rates a D.
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