Diary of a Mad Black Woman [WS] (REGION 1) (NTSC)
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Average customer rating:
3.33 out of 5
ISBN/ASIN : B00097DXGC
Manufacturer : Lions Gate|
Release data : 28 June, 2005
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I thought that this movie was absolutly brilliant, it's got everything you need. From laughter and drama to tears. For entertainment its value for money, but if your looking for something more meaningful and or artistic then this may not be for you, go and watch sideways. I am a big movie buff and love watching movies from all genres and this is deffinatly on my must buy list.
This movie is not for a "Johnathon Ross" (UK Film reviewer) type critique/review. If you are from an Afro American/Carribean background you will appreciate and understand where this movie is coming from. It manages a good mix of humour yet effectively touches on tough issues that affect the black community and outlines the value of God, love, forgiveness and a strong sense of character in the face of adversity. Definitely hits the spot, my brothers and sisters. Excellent effort and in my opinion, a worthy addition to any DVD collection.
"When you get a job, then you can ask me a question!"
I've been watching and reviewing movies for a long time now, some good, some bad, but never have I had to sit through something like The Diary of A Mad Black Woman, a film that is so obviously bad - it's downright shameful. I was expecting a witty and cleverly wrought comedy that perhaps had a few cheap laughs. The laughs, however, are few and far between, and when they come, they're so embarrassingly infantile, they're cringe inducing.
The film is a convoluted schizophrenic mess - part toilet humor, part really bad drag, part female-empowerment seminar, part come-to-Jesus exhortation, and part romantic fairy tale. It just can't decide what it wants to be. It's full of nonsensical subplots that don't need to be there, and a story setup that is so preposterous, contrived, and unbelievable that you will probably be shaking your head with disbelief that it was ever put down on paper.
Charles McCarter (Steve Harris) is a vain and improbably successful Atlanta defense attorney, who lives in a giant mansion (that he'd never be able to afford on an attorney's salary). His beautiful, lovely, glamorous stay-at-home wife, Helen (Kimberly Elise) lives with him, but she has no independent life of her own. We soon discover that the marriage is well and truly over, for Charles has begun to treat Helen like dirt, even cruelly throwing her out of his limousine, and ignoring her in favor of his sleazy mistress.
Secretive, horrible and verbally abusive, Charles violently ejects her from the mansion one night while the mistress looks on. Shattered and distraught, Helen plunks herself on the mansion steps. But all is not lost. Out of the blue conveniently comes our hallmark, handsome hero Orlando (Shemar Moore,), the hunky U-haul driver that Charles has hired to help get Helen started.
Having been forced by Charles to ostracize her entire family Helen winds up banging on the door of an elderly relative, Madea (Tyler Perry, in the worst drag I have ever seen) who initially seems to be her aunt. Madea is a gun toting, cursing nut job that counsels Helen to take extreme action in response to Charles' betrayal. When not spouting off offensive platitudes like the one about women always being "too busy out shopping" to know how to handle relationships, Madea's busy straining for chuckles in scenes like the one where she chainsaws Charles' couch in half.
Perry also plays Madea's aging brother, who smokes dope, verbally abuses Helen, and periodically let's loose flatulence in front of her elderly mother (an embarrassed looking Cicely Tyson). There's also Helen's cousin, Brian (also played by Perry, this time without the dress), who has a wife that becomes a homeless druggie, only to wander in and out of the storyline at random. (She later appears healed and miraculously sings like an innocent bird at a church choir).
All throughout this absolute disaster of a film, Helen is our narrator and this is her "diary" where she talks about how she's getting over the hurt and the pain and how she's managing to "make it" through each day at a time. The acting is horrible, the racial stereotypes offensive, and the love story between Elise and Moore stretches on for what seems like forever. (This viewer fast forwarded most of those scenes).
This is a mean spirited, nasty film that unexplainably gravitates between scenes of over-the-top violent melodrama to unfunny, juvenile banter. But amongst all the clichéd dialogue and predictably scenarios is the final "religious" message of the film - the eye-roller of all eye-rollers - that only by acknowledging "Good Christian Values" can Helen truly forgive Charles, and can Charles make it up to Helen for all the hurt and pain he's caused her. It's all so preachy, condescending, and sanctimonious that it's laughable.
Diary of A Mad Black Woman is a totally ill conceived movie. It's a film that is not only embarrassing for all involved, but also must go down as one of all-time grand cinematic mistakes. Apparently, Lions Gate has asked Perry to return for a sequel - and this time, he'll be directing. This is absolutely inexcusable - not only for the fact that Perry's getting massive paychecks for making this kind of junk, but also that a good chunk of the population is willing to pay good money to see it. Mike Leonard July 05.