Eddie Griffin

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A Lawyer Walks Into A Bar... Review


Good
If you don't have a lawyer in the family... you're probably not looking hard enough. With some one million lawyers in America, we live in easily the most litigious country in the world, and documentarian Eric Chaikin (whose competitive Scrabble documentary Word Wars is a guilty pleasure) tears the profession down before quietly building it back up again.

Chaikin begins by shredding some of lawyerdom's most notorious facets -- the growth of frivolous lawsuits, ambulance chasers, and absurd warnings on products urging you not to ingest them -- then abruptly turns his attention to a group of aspiring lawyers who are set to take the Bar Exam in a few weeks' time. Here we witness the grueling preparations required for the three-day exam (including sample questions), and the strong likelihood that our subjects will not pass anyway: In California, the Bar has an average pass rate of just 39 percent. What, no more new lawyers!?

Continue reading: A Lawyer Walks Into A Bar... Review

Scary Movie 3 Review


Good
There are lots of ways to churn out sequels, particularly comedies. You can speed along like a runaway train to capitalize on a surprise hit -- Miramax rushed Scary Movie 2 into theaters one year after the original's release -- or you can reset and go for broke. The latter approach seems to be the Scary Movie 3 motive, with new writers and veteran parody director David Zucker (Airplane!, The Naked Gun) joining the fray. For its efforts, Miramax gets a perfectly average movie, with fresh moments, lame retreads, and more opportunity for big box office.

Scary Movie 3 sticks with the program: mind-bogglingly dumb characters hustle their way through spoofs of the industry's most popular recent films. It's no mistake that the roasted movies -- in this case: Signs, The Ring, and 8 Mile -- all pull in huge money and attract a young audience.

Continue reading: Scary Movie 3 Review

The New Guy (2002) Review


Terrible
When the screenwriter responsible for one of the worst movies of one year directs an equally miserable film the following year, you'd have a hard time believing it was just coincidence. But Ed Decter, writer of the horribly unfunny Freddie Prinze Jr. clunker Head Over Heels, takes the directing reins for the first time with the remarkably lame teen comedy The New Guy.

The premise is simple: a high school ugly duckling named Dizzy (Road Trip's DJ Qualls) turns it around and starts fresh at a new school, strutting like a badass and making a new personality for himself as a guy named Gil. The supposedly funny twist is that he gets his education in cool while hanging at a prison, taking lessons in toughness from Eddie Griffin (wasted in his short appearance), learning how to dance like a hipster from Horatio Sanz (also wasted), and getting a makeover from the stereotypical cross-dressing cons in the pen. In each scene, Decter and screenwriter David Kendall (big blame goes to him too) want to get right to the funny immediately - the only problem is that each attempt results in a vacant black hole.

Continue reading: The New Guy (2002) Review

Undercover Brother Review


Weak
The Blaxploitation films of the 1970s starred relatively unknown black actors playing new kinds of male and female superheroes that had all of the style, funk, and butt-stomping moves to tackle any foe. With the exception of the Samuel L. Jackson's remake of Shaft and Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown, very few films in this genre have emerged in the last 30 years. Undercover Brother is a throwback to those classic films, but sadly, contains too little of the fashion or the funk that made its predecessors so much fun.

The film stars Eddie Griffin as Undercover Brother, a modern day black man with a wild afro and everything a '70s man could want, including a solid gold caddy, platform shoes, and polyester bell-bottoms. Brother is recruited by the B.R.O.T.H.E.R.H.O.O.D. organization to help overpower the evil efforts of "The Man." The Man, along with henchmen "The Feather" (Chris Kattan) and "White She-Devil" (Denise Richards) are causing havoc with race relations between blacks and whites. In "Operation Whitewash," The Man has influenced black General Boutwell (Billy Dee Williams) to not run for President, but rather to open a chain of fast food chicken restaurants.

Continue reading: Undercover Brother Review

Undercover Brother Review


OK

An "Austin Powers"-style blaxploitation spoof, "Undercover Brother" doesn't miss a single joke. Its title sequence alone -- a montage depicting the rise and fall of African-American culture (from Jesse Jackson and James Brown highs to Urkel and Dennis Rodman lows) -- is a laugh riot, in a sad-but-true kind of way.

So is the plot, about The Man, a megalomaniacal Caucasian corporate billionaire, trying to stop a Colin Powell-like black politician (Billy Dee Williams) from running for president ("He's so well-spoken," says a patronizing white news anchor). The Man has him kidnapped and brainwashed into opening a chain of fried chicken joints that will serve "nappy meals" instead. (Politically correct? What's that?)

There's only one man who can stop this evil plan: Undercover Brother, baby!

Continue reading: Undercover Brother Review

Eddie Griffin

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Eddie Griffin Movies

Scary Movie 3 Movie Review

Scary Movie 3 Movie Review

There are lots of ways to churn out sequels, particularly comedies. You can speed along...

Advertisement
The New Guy (2002) Movie Review

The New Guy (2002) Movie Review

When the screenwriter responsible for one of the worst movies of one year directs an...

Undercover Brother Movie Review

Undercover Brother Movie Review

The Blaxploitation films of the 1970s starred relatively unknown black actors playing new kinds of...

Undercover Brother Movie Review

Undercover Brother Movie Review

An "Austin Powers"-style blaxploitation spoof, "Undercover Brother" doesn't miss a single joke. Its title sequence...

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