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Friday After Next

What did you expect?

Well, the third installment of the Friday franchise is upon us, complete with the timely seasonal theme of the holidays. If you're a fan of the movies and you're looking for the short analysis, here it is: Better than the second one but not as good as the first. If somehow you don't own a copy of the original, and Next Friday wasn't one you caught on the big screen, the longer review will follow.

Craig (Ice Cube) and his knucklehead cousin Day-Day (Mike Epps) return to the big screen, and they've emigrated back to the hood from the suburbs. They're roommates in the Shady Palms apartment complex, which gets even shadier in the opening scene, when a ghetto Santa ransacks their apartment and beats poor Craig with his own gaudy Christmas tree. Anti-Santa steals all their presents and even makes off with their rent money, which they have been hiding in a speaker.

"Come on, you two," you want to shout, "hide your money in the bank, like a human." Those kids! You could just throttle them sometimes. But their innocent idiocy is part of what makes them such likeable guys.

One person who doesn't think so is the landlord, Miss Pearly (Bebe Drake). The rent is late as it is. Miss Pearly is a disturbingly mustachioed old battleaxe with a titan of a son, Damon, fresh from prison. She threatens to unleash all of Damon's homoerotic fury upon the pair if they don't come up with the rent by that evening.

Craig and Day-Day use their high-powered connections to get a job as security guards at the local strip mall. And by high-powered connections I mean their degenerate fathers, who have opened Bros. Bar-B-Q restaurant. (Their lack of customers seems testament to the fact that strip mall barbecue restaurants should be avoided). Mr. Jones (John Witherspoon) returns as Craig's father, and once again a good portion of the laughs generated by his character involve various intestinal discharges. Somehow he's found the strength to give up dog-catching in order to go into business with Uncle Elroy (Don "D.C." Curry), Day-Day's smooth wannabe-pimp pops.

Basically, that's the plot. Throw in a party and all sorts of hijinks involving pimps, cursing old ladies, gang members, and, as per usual, much puffing of the green. There are several full-on belly laughs in this one, but the horrible plot and alarming presence of rehashed jokes may obscure that point of light for some Friday-goers. Overall, it may be best if Friday After Next serves as the final nail in the franchise's coffin, but at least it's a pretty funny nail.



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Friday After Next
R
1 hour 25 minutes

Ice Cube
Mike Epps
John Witherspoon
Don "D.C." Curry
Anna Maria Horsford

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