By Dean Rogers
It was only two years ago that the world was exposed to Steve Harvey’s book turned movie “Think like a Man.” While the first movie felt like a two-hour infomercial for the best-selling book, its sequel, opening this weekend, takes a completely different turn and thank goodness it did. This time, we get a Vegas rom-com adventure that’s filled with hilarious moments, outrageous misbehaviors and Kevin Hart keeping us in stitches along the way. While the “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” mantra remains true in several successful comedy films in recent years, it doesn’t mean the party stops when the credits roll.
Wedding bells are ringing in the air as “The Mama’s Boy” Michael (Terrence J) and “the Single Mom” Candace (Regina Bell) are gearing up to marry at Caesar’s Palace in VEGAS! However, the happy couple run into the mother of all problems as Michael’s overbearing, domineering mother Loretta (Jenifer Lewis) decides to make plans of her own for the wedding.
Self-claimed Best Man Cedric (Kevin Hart) just reserved a high roller suite for the ultimate bachelor party. The guys are willing to make bad decisions that they will regret the following day, and some of the ladies follow suit with the bachelorette party. And the rest of the gang brought not only their support for Michael and Candace but also their relationship issues with them for the trip.
Dominic (Michael Ealy) and Lauren (Taraji P. Henson) are facing a decision due to job offers. Zeke (Romany Malco) is having trouble convincing Maya (Meagan Good) that he’s not a “playa” anymore. Jeremy (Jerry Ferrera) is under pressure by Kristen’s (Gabrielle Union) desire to having a baby while straight-laced couple Bennett (Gary Owen) and Tish (Wendi McLendon-Covey) want a kid-free weekend.
The guys and gals hope to outperform each other to see who can have the better blow-out but Loretta dishes her own plan by giving Candace the do’s and don’ts of bachelorette parties. With misfortunes along the way that can be downright disastrous, you’re in for an amusing two hours of your life.
This sequel has elements that resonate with anyone who has ever been in love. Director Tim Story keep the pace of the movie flowing smoothly by giving the actors a chance to bring their characters to life more fully. Their camaraderie on camera feels deep because of the reality each couple msut face. Story gives a wedding with a Vegas backdrop and lets the cast carry the film to the end. Each of the actors has a moment where they shine.
During a nightclub scene, the girls deliver a knockout performance when they are suddenly thrust into a music video set to Bell Biv Devoe’s smash hit “Poison.” I could not help but to tap my feet and reminisce of a time when music was popping. Be sure to look for a split second cameo in that scene. While the girls were rapping to the beat, the men are at a strip club being distracted by the dancers while trying to have some meaningful conversations.
While the movie could have just focused on the fun, it’s refreshing to see how the characters have evolved since the first film. Standout performances go to Ealy for being the laid back team player with a good conscience and Hart for being well… Kevin Hart.
Think Like a Man Too took a gamble on being a sequel that could go either way and paid off with a great ensemble that delivers a good time for your viewing pleasure.
FINAL GRADE: B+