NewsBlaze search box Daily News header

Madea's Witness Protection Movie Review

By     get stories by email

Changing things up substantially, and we're not just talking his usual protagonist and gender switch-ups, writer/director Tyler Perry crosses over into white character driven comedy with Madea's Witness Protection, and the results are not half bad. And posing rather new and different but never a dull moment predicaments for both Perry as a filmmaker, and his reigning alternate senior citizen persona on screen, Madea.

Wall Street meets the Deep South, or rather collides, in Madea's Witness Protection, as George Needleman (Eugene Levy), the unusually wealthy accountant at a New York City investment bank, suddenly finds himself the fall guy for an in-house mob Ponzi scheme when the stocks hit the fan. Stuck with taking the rap for his colleagues, counting a ruthlessly scheming Tom Arnold, Needleman faces the bad news from Atlanta prosecutor Brian (Tyler Perry) that he either fess up or squeal to the feds about mob money laundering, and enter the witness protection program for the duration of the subsequent trials.

tyler
Photo: www.rottentomatoes.com
With not much of an option at hand, Needleman packs up his fretting wife (Denise Richards) and kids more used to an upscale lifestyle, and submits to witness protection arrangements provided by Brian. Which to everyone in question's mutual dismay all around, turns out to be the Atlanta home of Brian's Aunt Madea (Perry) and Uncle Joe (ditto Perry).

So begins Perry's obvious amusement and sustained infusion of tangy wit, as he mines the cultural and economic but primarily racial clashes and divides - but in mostly delicate PG-13 terms - that have long plagued this nation. As quite a toned down Madea plays Mom to just about everyone else. Which tends to confine the proceedings to mostly standard when not just plain silly sitcomish dysfunctional national family antics.

That is, until a sidebar plot centering around illegally swiping funds from a bank account back in New York City kicks in, so that everyone fleeced to begin with can be happily reimbursed. Which affords Madea/Tyler not only an opportunity to double up in the undercover disguise department, but breathe fresh laughs into the dramedy. And involving a couple of other culture clashes as well - Madea negotiating the unfamiliar turf way outside her comfort zone of an invasive airport pat-down, along with exceedingly unfamiliar luxury hotel dining and toileting customs.

Tyler Perry's venture into unfamiliar racial territory with Madea's Witness Protection goes down exceptionally easy when not typically over the top. With a charmingly sweet and sour, more buoyant than boisterous Perry this time around, confidently and playfully at the helm.

Lionsgate Films
Rated PG-13
3 stars

Prairie Miller is a NY multimedia journalist online, in print and on radio, and on WBAI/Pacifica National Radio Network's Arts Express. Read more reviews by Prairie Miller. Contact Prairie through NewsBlaze. Read more stories by Prairie Miller.

  Please click this get stories by email button to be notified about future stories, and please leave a comment below.

  Please leave a comment here     If it does not display within 10 seconds, please refresh the page

Related Movie Reviews News

A gulf in the attitudes of two men had a profound effect on the orphans' fortunes. One is stable and successful and the other had many scrapes with the law.
Thai (arrow), a film by Henry Kro, 37th out of 1190 films from 86 countries. Features 16 year old Karbi heroine Rengsajir P Killingpi, daughter of acclaimed Diphu martial artist
Prairie Miller discusses the beat poets, punk rock, Elijah's journey from Frodo to hero worship, Auden, Blake, McCarthyism, and the radicalization of Thomas
Lucy McBath reminisces about Jordan while discussing 3 1/2 Minutes, Ten Bullets, a documentary chronicling the trial of her son's killer.
A young victimized actor phones in from LA, to speak about An Open Secret, a documentary that exposes the child casting couch rampant in Hollywood
A desk-bound CIA analyst acts as the ears and eyes of Bradley Fine, a veteran spy. Used to seeing action through hidden cameras and listening devices, when the spy is killed, she takes over his job.

 

NewsBlaze Writers Of The Month


Popular Stories This Month

newsletter logo

NewsBlaze
Copyright © 2004-2014 NewsBlaze Pty. Ltd.
Use of this website is subject to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy  | DMCA Notice               Press Room   |    Visit NewsBlaze Mobile Site