#1  
Old 03-02-2003, 09:11 PM
Reviews: Bringing Down the House

JoBlo's 4/10 review of BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE can be found here: http://www.joblo.com/bringingdownthehouse.htm

And what did you think of the movie? Add your comments below.

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  #2  
Old 03-04-2003, 05:21 AM

My review of Bringing Down The House



In short for the most part a very funny movie,with plenty of laughs
And a very likeable,colorful cast that keeps things moving.


THE GOOD

One of the things I loved about this movie ,is the way it pokes fun at internet
dating craze.Dont worry this is not another version of You’ve Got Mail.Tom
Hanks you’re a great actor but that movie was boooooorring.Internet dating,
You never know what you’re going to get.But fortunately we get a lot of laughs
From this movie.Steve Martin and Queen Latifah work great together.Right from the jump ,the insults,the one liners,and latifah trying to teach martin how to properly woo
A woman..Ilaughed so many times,of course some scenes really standout.Latifah’s
Catfight ,with Martins skanky,gold digging ex sister-in-law,and Martins pop and
Lock dance off,with some hip hop club goers.And it helps that the supporting cast is
Just as funny.Eugene Levy as Martins friend/law partner,who “likes his jelly to jiggle”.
So of course he instantly falls in love with the voluptuous,Latifah..I couldn’t help
But laugh at his one liner come on’s to Latifah..The aforementioned ex sister-in-law
Played by Missi Pyle,and Michael Rosenbaum,as Martins younger rival at the firm,and
Who always try’s to one up him,so creepy .I wish there had been more of this character
On screen,but I guess he was between shooting the series Smallville.(he plays LEX Lu-
Thor on the show,I defy anyone not to notice his toupee).And last but not least Joan Plow-right as the rich client,Martin wants business from,so oblivious you don’t know
If she realizes she is actually offending people with her comments,about her “servants”
From back in the days.And I must add I love that the Latifah gets to show her sexy side,i
Hate when a woman hides her sexuality.

THE BAD


About an hour in the flic starts to become kind of predictable.And the editing I hate when
Scenes I have viewed in a trailer,are missing from the film.Near the last half hour of
The film’s the laughs become more widespread ,and loses some steam.

All in all a funny film,great characters,great comic timing,it wont win any Oscars,but it will make you laugh. Scale of 1-10 a 7 ½ raiting. Opens in theatres March 7,2003
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  #3  
Old 03-07-2003, 11:19 PM

*******MILD SPOILERS*************




Bringing Down The House has to be one of the few movies I have seen in which the entire audience was laughing hysterically throughout the whole film.

Sure, the film is predictable, lacking in substance, and offensive in parts, but Bringing Down The House does not attempt to be anything substantial or Oscar worthy. It was made to entertain, and it definetly succeeds at it.

The films strength lies in its cast. Steve Martin is hilarious. Queen Latifah has amazing screen presence, is as sexy as hell and had me in stitches. Eugene Levy was funny as hell as usual. Betty White was shockingly offensive, but pulls it off and Joan Plowright was a friggin' hoot as a Queen Elizabethesque heiress.

The chemistry between Steve Martin and Queen Latifah was fantastic to say the least. The seemingly odd pairing of the two is excellent and without their chemistry, the film would not have been half as funny or charming.

I was in hysterics while watching the film, laughing my ass off and even gasping in comedic shock at some of the crude and offensive jokes.

My favorite moments:

The first country club scene in which Charlene (Queen Latifah) and Ashley have their catfight. The scene was so over the top and zany that it was hysterical.

Eugene Levy and Queen Latifah's banter.

Steve Martin homied out in the club and dancing.

Joan Plowright getting stoned and doing a little dance on the bar while the action of the finale plays out.

Bringing Down The House is a fun time at the movies. I haven't laughed so hard at a film in a long time. Sure its not a great film, nor does it have any substance, but it doesn't aspire to be great. It aspires to entertain and it is definetly successful at it!

I give it a solid B grade.

Truly hilarous and I must stress that Queen Latifah is one sexy and talented woman.
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  #4  
Old 03-07-2003, 11:36 PM
This is one of the most mindless movies ever made. I felt like a rocket scientist because i found the ending predictable in the first 3 and a half minutes. I dont see how every time Eugene Levy (funny as he may be) says something in that steryotypical black fashion, the whole theater lets out a roar of laughter.

There was a time, not too long ago when i respected Queen Latifa, since her nice, although not academy worthy run in the nice film Chicago as the prison warden. This is a horrible step on the ladder to being a leading lady. Somebody acts racist to her. She punches/does something mean to them. And since in BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE world, EVERY white person is racist and doesnt know that crazy civil war and slave stuff is over.

Another actress i will no longer look at the same is sweetheart Betty White. Everyone's favorite Golden Girl gets the Joan Collins special, when she gets the pleasure to be cast as the bigot with very little screen time.

Now to the big kahuna. STEVE MARTIN WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING. You had 2 funny parts in this movie, and just because you can dance very well and can talk like a steryotypical thug very humorously. SHAME ON YOUR *slaps his hand*. Write another DECENT, FUNNY, comedy like ROXANNE or another JERK (one of my all time faves), anything but this.

this might belong in teh rant section. because i really hated this movie.

Last edited by Pootie; 03-09-2003 at 12:20 AM..
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  #5  
Old 03-11-2003, 01:38 PM
Steve Martin is back in another comedy. I can't resist seeing anything with Steve Martin because he's so funny.

Although it's not his funniest comedy it does have a few good laughs here and there. Steve Martin and Queen Latifah make a hilarious team with some very funny situations....... a great cast with a funny storyline. 7.5/10
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  #6  
Old 03-12-2003, 08:15 PM
Bringing Down The House - 9/10
WARNING : SOME SPOILERS




BWA HA HA HA !!! Now this is just the kind of comedy I have been looking forward to for a while. It definately is going down on my favorites list, almost up there with Happy Gilmore, Dogma, and There's Something About Mary. I went in with mediocre expections, and was pleased with what the movie had to offer. It is a very light-hearted movie, which is good for taking the mind off current situations such as a struggling economy, war on Iraq, etc. which so many recent war movies have stimulated. It is close to 2 hours in length, but it goes by really fast. Everyone in the theater I went to seemed to enjoy it.

The script was pretty good, but the energy of the film stems from it's unusual breed of casting. Steve Martin (who has hits and misses when it comes to comedy) starts out as a typical American father who leads a pretty dull life, has a broken family, and whos life is totally wrapped up in work -- and later began to loosen up and try to understand and relate to Queen Latifah's character as Charlene. Although he is quite a bit lame at transforming into one of the 'hip', he still made me roll with laughter during several of the scenes, from the time he tried to kick Charlene out of his house and got thrown into a swimming pool to one of the final sequences where he gets prepped up to appear at a black club trying to save her.

Queen Latifah's performance is the first I've seen (I haven't yet seen Chicago yet). Really nothing special, since her job to act as a typical black woman... but the script works her in nicely. She's proud, she's rude, she's loud, she'll fight anyone and anything; but she's innocent of the crime she's served time in bars for. A couple of memorable moments with her are 1) the scene in which she beats the hell out of Martin's gold-digging ex-sister-in-law and ends up hanging her from a coathanger, and 2) her reaction to the old woman talking about the slave days... hehe. oh yeah, and 3) when she had the daughters boyfriend hanging from a ledge.

Then perhaps the funniest person in the movie -- Eugene Levy. The reason he's the most amusing here to me was because I was sitting there thinking about his role in the American Pie movies (remember -- "Keep it real, homies") and was impressed with how he's moved from the old dad who just can't be 'hip' enough to one of the most bizarre characters in this movie.

Moreover, let's talk about the script and the jokes. The casting was perfect, and so was the writing. The jokes aren't out in left field this time (if you've seen the latest Farrelly Brothers comedies you would understand what I mean by this) -- they are actually quite funny. The cover a large scale -- ranging from Latifah's charcter teaching Martin's kids to read using a porno magazine to an old grumpy woman who apparantly hasn't had any fun in 30 years drinking and smoking at a black club and ending up dancing on the bar (plus slurring her words later).

After laughing hysterically throughout, the ending was just exactly the way it should have been. Moving on to the moral of the story, Martin's character learned how to lighten up and become a better dad (and apparantly worked things out with his ex-wife), Levy's character wound up in the front seat on the 'hip' bus, and Latifah's character got justice.

A couple of small details of the movie that didn't work for me - Martin's ex-wife just seemed way to young for me to believe that the two were together. Also, the 'kid' she started dating seemed like a pretty disposable character (although it was interesting watching him trying his damndest to cop a feel here and there, hehe).

I can't even name all the really funny jokes that were here, because there were just too many. This wasn't one of those movies where every good joke was given away in the trailer -- there were quite a few pleasant surprises. Stereotypical? Sure, but in the case of this movie, it worked. Black Knight had a similarity -- but it didn't scratch the surface of this one. It was good enough I could even go for another watching in theaters. For it to be worth the rising cost of movie tickets and refreshments, that says a lot about the value of comedy.

Last edited by The1TrueFrog; 03-12-2003 at 08:17 PM..
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  #7  
Old 03-19-2003, 05:15 PM
Bringing Down the House - *1/2

It’s always such a shame when a movie comes out and all the funniest parts have already been revealed in the advertising. There’s a scene near the end in which Steve Martin is trying to fit in at a night club run by gangsters which was completely ruined by the commercials. When told that his clothes look stupid, Steve Martin responds, “Oh really? Cuz I go them from your Momma!” Having already scene Martin’s delivery of this punch line at the end of at least ten commercials really took away from the impact of the line in the film, since the effect basically depended all on the element of surprise. Having the privilege of hearing that line for the first time within the movie actually will bring down the house. I’m not sure if that’s the case with all of the other jokes though. I wonder if most of the jokes weren’t funny because I’d already heard them fifty times of if they just didn’t fit in the context of the actual movie.

Steve Martin stars as Peter Sanderson and as the narration over the trailer informed us, “Life was all work and no play for Peter Sanderson.” Over the opening credits we see Peter making a blind internet date in a legal chat room. He originally believes the woman to be a beautiful, young Caucasian only to find out that is soul mate is actually a “soul sister” named Charlene. Charlene (Queen Latifah) is a former convict who insists “she did the time, but didn’t do the crime baby” and has just made her departure from her minimum-security correctional facility and needs a place to stay. Charlene decides to go around causing havoc on every aspect of Peter’s normally docile lifestyle unless he will agree to help try to expunge her record. In a moment of frantic anxiety, Peter complies and states “Consider it expunged.” Along the way Peter learns invaluable insight into Charlene’s culture while also finding out that basically every other Caucasian, excluding his family, is an overzealous racist.

The momentary daze that had been still lingering from Chicago has completely worn off as I have come to my senses and remembered why I hate Queen Latifah. She plays her role ridiculously over-the-top and her facial expressions are especially exaggerated in her close up, reaction shots. As for Steve Martin, he is a comic genius and there is little reason to mention his performance in this stereotypical dreck other than to confirm he is at his usual best. The rest of the supporting players are given mainly just gimmicky, one-dimensional roles with little to do. Joan Plowright is a good actress and it’s dismaying to she her participating in such degrading and embarrassing material. A throwaway dinner scene featuring her breaking out into a racist song for no justifiable reason is exceptionally painful to watch.

There’s also the astonishingly unnecessary character of the kindly looking, but deeply racist old lady next door. The only real purpose she serves is to stand around and blurt out insanely racist remarks for no reason whatsoever. Admittedly, she does have one minute plot point but it is served exclusively to move the story forward and the point could have easily been met by alternative means. Moving the plot forward ever so slightly is no excuse for the rest of her screen time. The final insult is that her character never even gets her deserved, final comeuppance.

One of my overall major complaints with the film was the way it tried so relentlessly to glorify and advocate the usage of Ebonics. Unlike the advertisements, which made its approach look mocking in tone, the film itself seems to be saying that if you don’t understand and appreciate Ebonics, then you must be uptight and boring. I also didn’t care for the film’s almost exclusively hip-hop and rap based soundtrack. It’s one thing if they genuinely felt the film depended on that kind of music, but if those songs really encompassed the nature of the film, why did they tease us by playing classics like “Dancing till September” or Donna Summer’s “Hot Stuff” in all the trailers and TV spots.

The first 30 minutes of Bringing Down the House is basically unbearable with 70% of the dialogue being racial slurs and stereotypes. The rest of the movie does get funnier but it still never performs at the level it should be at. A perfect example is the aforementioned set piece of having Steve Martin trying to infiltrate and blend in at an underground gang-run club. Even though Warren Beatty already did this in Bulworth, the idea is still overflowing with potential. Originality issues aside; this scene is definitely showcased in the wrong film with it never earning the gigantic laughs it should have deserved. It should also be noted that the film features three of the most uncalled for fight scenes this side of Mr. Deeds. Although these ones might be a bit more damaging since it can be perceived from watching this movie that an African-American woman’s only major form of defense is by beating up people so viciously that in real life they would be left within the brink of death.

Hidden somewhere amidst this mess is a nice 10 minutes where Peter and Charlene go out to dinner which is both sweet and pleasant and therefore stands out head-and-shoulders above the rest of the emotionally shallow scenes. These short sequences featuring just Steve Martin and Queen Latifah remind us of what should have been done with this material and their talent. The only thing Bringing Down the House brought down was my thumb.

-Steve

Last edited by Narst; 03-19-2003 at 05:30 PM..
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  #8  
Old 03-25-2003, 10:40 PM
Bringing Down the House(2003)-6/10

Bringing Down the House is a so-so uneven comedy that has a fairly fun premise, but is not always funny and is full of racial cliches and stereotypes. Going into this film I wasn't expecting a whole lot except maybe a few laughs and Steve Martin and Queen Latifah having a bit of fun. That is pretty much what I got but ultimately it didn't quite work. Steve Martin plays Peter Sanderson a smooth hard working lawyer recently divorced by his wife and only left with his work and occasionally looking after his kids for the weekend. Looking for love he chats online with "lawyer girl", who he thinks is a good looking blonde attorney. When he sets up a romantic dinner meeting, who does he find at his door but Charlene played by Queen Latifah, a saucy fast talking ex-con who needs a place to crash and needs a lawyer to help her with her case, where she has been wrongly accused in a jewel heist. Of course Sanderson's life gets turned upside down as the upper-class white suburbanite clashes with the fast-talking black street hustler. This is a major problem because Sanderson is trying to land a big account with a wealthy old lady Mrs. Arness played by Joan Plowright. Sanderon's friend Howie Rosenthal played by the always fun Eugene Levy takes a "freaky" liking to Charlene as do Peter's two young kids. The movie is basically Charlene helping Peter trying to get his wife back while Peter works on Charlene's case and trys to clear her name. As I said most of the jokes are not very funny and we have seen most of them before. Some work and some don't but Martin and Latifah seem to be having loads of fun together and we can see that. This movie also might be quite offensive to some, with its numerous racial cliches and stereotypes and flat out racist characters like Sanderson's neighbor played by Betty White, and his bitchy, snyed sister in law. The fight beween her and Queen Latifah at the country club is quite fun though...and I did enjoy Joan Plowright getting wasted at a down-town African-American nightclub. Overall, Bringing Down the House is a so-so comedy about a woman from a different part of town livening up the dreary workaday life of a white lawyer. Most of the jokes don't work and the racist tone is off-putting, but Steve Martin and Queen Latifah are ok and seem to be enjoying it.

Last edited by Puck Bond; 03-25-2003 at 10:43 PM..
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  #9  
Old 03-29-2003, 12:40 AM
I really liked this movie. I hadn't seen the trailer or even heard of it before but me and a friend went a long and laughed our asses off!

Steve Martin was hilarious and it is clear to me that he is a very good entertainer. He did an awesome job at the Oscars and he goes all-out with physical comedy here and succeeds brilliantly.

Queen Latifah and her enormous bosoms are as good as they were in Chicago (10/10), but here she gets the chance to shine more because she is the lead female character. The Queen is like Steve Martin - all out for physical comedy. She's hysterical!

There were so many parts were I laughed out loud in this movie. So what, it wasn't perfect! So what, it didn't have an excessive amount of brilliant dialogue or character development! What matters is that it was entertaining, and why can't critics just simply go along to a movie once in a while and just ENJOY it for the ENTERTAINMENT value, and just enjoy themselves? I had a great time with this flick, it was fuinny as hell.

FAVE PARTS:

--Joan Plowright gets STONED!! HAHAHAAHAHAH!

--Queen Latifah's physical comedy was awesome. She shakes that booty like the queen she is!

--Steve Martin's transformation into an "older Eminem" had me in stitches.

--The fight seriously had me falling on the floor with laughter. It was so over-the-top and silly and the climax with the girl hanging from the hook by her skirt was JUST HYSTERICAL!! I loved this part.

NOT-SO-GOOD POINTS:

--Queen Latifah inviting her "sistaz" round for a party at the Sandersons. It was just ... lame.

--That Ashley character was very annoying and really had nothing to do with the story.

--Eugene Levy kinda pissed me off. Not so much his performance but his character really had no reason to be there, and is so not good enough for Charlene.

Overall, this was a funny funny movie. I enjoyed it immensely. I liked how it had a little crime mystery goin' on in the middle of all the booty-shakin and love-makin.' Fun flick guys - don't expect too much and just enjoy it!

8/10
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  #10  
Old 03-29-2003, 09:31 PM



Bringing Down the House: 7/10

In Adam Shankman’s new comedy Bringing Down the House that is stereotyped but still funny, Steve Martin is Peter Sanderson, a divorced tax attorney. He’s wealthy, but never can keep promises to his kids George and Sarah (Angus T. Jones, The Rookie, Kimberly J. Brown, A Bug’s Life). They live with his ex-wife Kate (Jean Smart), but visit him occasionally. Peter’s called upon to work on the will and estates of Mrs. Arness (Joan Plowright), along with her dog William Shakespeare. He works with Howie (Eugene Levy), who is about to become smitten with Charlene.

Charlene is an internet buddy of Peter’s, and they soon arrange a date. Instead of a young, blond reporter, he gets a giant, busty black felon played by Queen Latifah. As you could guess, things don’t work out in the beginning, and she wrecks havoc on his suburban, SUV, white bread life.

I laughed a good deal, mainly during the second half, but I felt like they tried too hard to HAVE stereotypes. Charlene is a jive-talking girl, uses and omits wrong words, etc. On the other hand, Peter’s neighbor, and his boss’s mother Mrs. Kline (Betty White) is racist, who gets upset when she “hears Negro” over at Peter’s house. I’m not saying it isn’t funny, but it is racist. I thought that Levy was quite good, although it did seem like it wasn’t coming naturally to him. In the theater, everyone cracked up at the line, “You’ve got me straight trippin’, boo,” a line that has been used multiple times in the commercials, and wasn’t funny then, and isn’t funny now. I think that audiences these days laugh when they think they need to laugh. They need to be spoon-fed, etc., but I digress.

An interesting note: Charlene’s last name in this movie is Morton, which was also her last name in Chicago. I thought she did great, but I don’t really see how she can move from an independent studio blockbuster to a racist comedy (but then again, Catherine Zeta-Jones did move from The Phantom to Chicago). Of course, things get more and more implausible as the movie progresses, but it’s a pleasant and funny diverter, so you won’t notice.

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual humor, and drug material.
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  #11  
Old 03-31-2003, 08:42 PM

Bringing down the House 7/10

Queen Latifah is doing pretty good in the acting business. She's been in Many films. She was seen in Brown Sugar, the oscar winning Chicago for which she was nominated for best supporting actress( but lost to fellow co star Zeta Jones) Now she's in bringing down the house. A hilarious comedy also starring two funny people: Steve Martin and Eugene Levy.

premise: Peter is a lawyer who has just gotten into a divorce. Meanwhile he spends his time talking to lawyergirl on a chat room. They decide to meet but Peter finds out his new love is a fellow convict. Charlene wants peter to clear her name. During the time Howie begins hitting on her.

This movie was hilarious. Queen Latifah had me cracking up. Steve Martin was funny pretending to be black. Its one of his funniest films. It ranks right up there with The Jerk. Eugene Levy had me cracking up. The jokes were a dead aim. The porn mag was pretty funny.

I thought was a little racist at times. Especially with the mexican comment. One scene was funny but it might cause black people to be offended. One thing I wanted more in the movie was more scenes with Eugene Levy. he didn't get that many scenes.

Bringing down the house is one house party you're gonna want to get into
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  #12  
Old 04-17-2003, 03:47 AM
Spoilers: I found this movie surprisingly good. 7.5/10. Queen Latifah was very likeable too. The beginning 20mins or so weren't funny at all but the jokes slowly began to pick up (I found the stoned old lady hilarious).
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  #13  
Old 04-27-2003, 05:19 PM
I didnt like the film because it was predictable. Not very funny either. I thought Steve and the Queen would do a better job.
It probably was intended more for the teenage audience.
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  #14  
Old 05-26-2003, 01:44 PM
The Moose Hole - Review of Bringing Down the House

Released March 7th, 2003

Director: Adam Shankman

Starring: Steve Martin, Queen Latifah, Eugene Levy, Joan Plowright, Missi Pyle, Jean Smart, Betty White, Kimberly J. Brown, Michael Ensign, Aengus James, Angus T. Jones, Matt Lutz, Victor Webster

Premise: Peter Sanderson (Martin) is a divorced, straight-laced, uptight attorney who still loves his ex-wife (Smart) and can't figure out what he did wrong to make her leave him. However, Peter's trying to move on, and he's smitten with a brainy, bombshell barrister he's been chatting with on-line. However, when she comes to his house for their first face to face, she isn't refined, isn't Ivy League, and isn't even a lawyer. Instead, it's Charlene (Latifah), a prison escapee who's proclaiming her innocence and wants Peter to help clear her name. But Peter wants nothing to do with her, prompting the loud and shocking Charlene to turn Peter's perfectly ordered life upside down, jeopardizing his effort to get back with his wife and woo a billion dollar client (Plowright). In the end, our unlikely pair has the chance to put each other's lives on higher ground... if they don't end up bringing down the house.

From an early look at the March schedule a couple of months ago, Bringing Down the House looked to another typical comedy starring funny-man Steve Martin. But things have changed pretty quickly for the film. Queen Latifah, who stars opposite Martin, was just recently nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the film adaptation of Chicago. Adding more Oscar glamour to the film is the movie's star, Steve Martin, who was given the position as host of the 75th Academy Awards. This doesn't mean that the film has more potential with critics but it may give people a better reason to rush out to the local Cineplex and catch the flick. But will the comedy fly high with audiences or will it trip like so many others in the past?

The story goes that Steven Martin plays an up-tight tax lawyer named Peter Sanderson. He is recently divorced, spends very little time with his kids, and at odds with a fellow tax lawyer who is battling to woo a billion dollar client to invest in the firm. Taking a break from his hectic life, Peter decides to go online and chats with a very interesting woman lawyer. He sets up a blind date at his house but she visits, she isn't what he was expecting at all. She not a lawyer but in fact a convicted criminal who escaped from jail. Now she won't leave until he takes her case and proves her innocence. The story for Bringing Down the House is a complexing one at that. The film has large moments of hilarity but has way too many racist comments and statements that make the civil rights movement look like a joke. Some jokes are innocent but some audience members may be too offended by some the jabs at racist views.

Though the story is a problem doesn't mean the acting is good. Steve Martin proves himself to still hold as the King of Funny. Martin does a hilarious job trying to play a "home boy" in "the hood" which was partially featured in the trailer for the film. Bringing Down the House is certainly not Chicago but Queen Latifah still does a fabulous job. Her role could have been a whole lot funnier but she works with what is given to her and she performs well with that. The highlight of the entire film has to be Eugene Levy. He hilarious in the two films for American Pie and continues to showcase his comedic genius here. The best scene he performs has to be at the very end of the film. Make sure to catch it, with no hints given here.

Overall, Bringing Down the House is a very funny film but at a big cost. The story hurts it more then anything else. The story focuses too much the relationship between Queen Latifah and Steve Martin's characters rather then focusing on the rebonding of Peter Sanderson and his estranged. By some miracle they decide to throw in a happy ending solution between the two at the end without focusing much of the story at all on them. The racy jokes are a little too much to deal with. Some of those jokes may fly by some people but for those who understand them, they can be pretty insulting. This is probably the best cast a comedy could have but they can't really do much outside of the script to help this troubled picture. The films is okay to catch once but only if you really need to see Steve Martin and Eugene Levy in the same comedy. If not then catch the film on DVD in a couple of months, if you feel like going to the local Blockbuster and renting it.

My Rating: *** out of 5 (Grade: C-)
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