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Now in our eleventh calendar year!
PCR #525 (Vol. 11, No. 16). This edition is for the week of April 12--18, 2010.

This Week's PCR
Movie Review
"Death At A Funeral"

Movie review by:
Michael A. Smith

Movies are rated 0 to 4 stars

theater seats

"Death At A Funeral"  by Mike Smith
Forgotten Horrors: Equinox  by ED Tucker
The World of Wrestling  by Chris Woods
G2: Attack of Legion  by Jason Fetters
Interview With The Projectionist, Part 1  by John Miller
Movie Notes .... Remake City .... .... .... .... .... .... .... Mike's Record Shelf  by Mike Smith

Screen Gems     
Starring: Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence and Peter Dinklage
Directed by: Neil Labute
Rated: R
Running Time: 1 hour 30 mins

There is a scene early in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” where a man and woman walk by the camera after a wedding, the woman remarking “I always cry at weddings.” Back in the day when the audience participation was at its best, the assembled crowd would shout back “What do you do at funerals?” If they attended the one featured in “Death at a Funeral” they would laugh themselves to, dare I say it, death!

In a home in Los Angeles a large black family gathers to bury one of their own. As they assemble we meet the mourners. His sons (Rock, Lawrence). His beloved wife (Loretta Devine). His two brothers (Ron Glass and Danny Glover). And that curious looking and vertically-challenged white guy. These characters, and many more, will soon contribute to what is easily so far the funniest film of the year.

A remake of a 2007 film made in England and directed by the great Frank Oz, “Death at a Funeral” keeps the funny coming almost non-stop for 90 minutes. I was dubious at first thought that I would accept the film as written (the original film told the same story, with Peter Dinklage the only actor reprising his role in the new movie). Among the funnier moments a scene which puts an unsuspecting and accidentally drugged James Marsden naked on the roof of the house. In fact, with all of the comic talent involved, including Rock, Lawrence and Tracy Morgan, Marsden steals the show here. Regina Hall, who plays Rocks’ wife, also does a good job with dealing with the unusual members of the family, especially her mother in law (Devine) who continually reminds her that she “can’t understand death without first giving life. Kudos to Dinklage for not only reprising his role here but making both characters new and different.

Director Labute lets the comedy work on screen, which I’m sure was easy with the talent level of the cast. I would venture that the only notes he gave himself for this film was: Point camera at talent and get out of the way.

On a scale of zero to four I give "Death at a Funeral"  

This week's movie review of "Death At A Funeral" is ©2010 by Michael A. Smith.  All graphics this page are creations of Nolan B. Canova, ©2010, all rights reserved. All contents of "Nolan's Pop Culture Review" are ©2010 by Nolan B. Canova.