Hilarious, Fun Date Movie ‘Think Like a Man Too’

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CHICAGO – Date night at the movies has a new alternative to the summer sci-fi and animation with “Think Like a Man Too.” The sequel to the popular first film has a burst of creative juice from an energetic cast, and dares to do something different with the bachelor party in Las Vegas theme.

What distinguishes the film is that the women – putting on their own bachelorette event in Las Vegas – in many ways outdo the guys. Part of the is due to the very funny Wendi Covey-McLendon (the grossed out Mom in “Bridesmaids”) who gets her freak on and steals every scene. But also, there is the super-hot personality of Kevin Hart, in collaboration with director Tim Story, who keeps the proceedings loose and entertaining. From the beginning to the end, with Hart and Story the conductors, the guys and gals of “Think Like a Man Too” just want to have fun.

The gang from the first film is back for the Las Vegas wedding of Michael (Terrence Jenkins) and Candace (Regina Hall). Cedric (Kevin Hart) has figured out that he is the best man, and wants to put on a bachelor party that will be Vegas style. The men (Michael Ealy, Jerry Ferrera, Gary Owen, Romany Malco) are treated to a mega-suite in Caesar’s Palace, and the women (Gabrielle Union, Meagan Good, Taraji P. Henson, Wendi-McLendon Covey, La La Anthony) are momentarily derailed in their plans by Candace’s mother Loretta (Jenifer Lewis).

Think Like a Man Too
The Guys Get Their Slow Motion Walk in ‘Think Like a Man Too’
Photo credit: Screen Gems

Because Cedric books the suite with money he doesn’t have, part of the hijinks involve the gambling elements of Vegas. Meanwhile the women have come up with a plan to distract Loretta with Uncle Eddie (Dennis Haysbert), and have begun their journey through the Vegas night. Along with way, with the bonding of friends and the impending wedding, lessons are bound to be learned.

In ensemble films like this often the set-up takes too long, but in this case with a wedding in Vegas, the sequel gets into gear quickly. All the sets-up involve the various states of relationships the men and women are in, and there is a funny running gag involving Cedric and his ex-wife trying to reach other on their mobile phones. The rest are relationships in various stages – married couples thinking about kids, challenges because of the past and old married hands who are ready to break loose. That stuff is window dressing for the main event.

And credit the screenwriters – David A. Newman and Keith Merryman – and director Tim Story for letting the women break loose and perform an amazingly bold and creative lip dub. The men have their moments, this is Vegas after all, but the ladies get their due. Wendi Covey-McLendon is especially funny, she has an great instinct for how to make her character come alive at the right moments.

Of course Kevin Hart is one of the hottest celebrities working right now, and takes full advantage of his king-of-the-movies status here. What is remarkable about how he performs is that he goes right to edge of being too much, but reels it back in time. He also allows for his fellow cast members to take some heavy lifting, and Gary Owen becomes a bizarre presence in the party.

Think Like a Man Too
The Women Strut Their Stuff in ‘Think Like a Man Too’
Photo credit: Screen Gems

The plot is clunky and may have needed one more pass through the story filter. Why does a Vegas movie need life lessons? There is such an effort for each of the couples to come to an endgame with their conflicts, that it sometimes derails the party, which is why they’re in Vegas. Nonetheless, the addition of Dennis Haysbert as a smooth talking dude for Loretta was genius casting – have we finally found the new king to take the Billy Dee Williams crown?

Date nights are about fun, about men and women, and this movie is perfect for the often awkward moments of that early coupling. Afterward, it’s into the night with the energy of having had a good laugh, and “Think Like a Man Too” is ready to start that night for you.

“Think Like a Man Too” opens everywhere on June 20th. Featuring Kevin Hart, Regina Hall, Terrence Jenkins, Michael Ealy, Jerry Ferrara, Dennis Haysbert, Taraji P. Henson and Wendi McLendon-Covey. Screenplay by Keith Merryman and David A. Newman, based on the book by Steve Harvey. Directed by Tim Story. Rated “R”

HollywoodChicago.com senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Senior Staff Writer

© 2014 Patrick McDonald, HollywoodChicago.com

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