The star studded and painfully unfunny “Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins” stars Martin Lawrence, James Earl Jones, Margaret Avery, Joy Brant, Cedric the Entertainer, Nichole Ari Parker, Michael Clark Duncan, Mike Epps and Mo’Nique. It’s written and directed by Malcolm D. Lee (Undercover Brother, Roll Bounce).
Roscoe Jenkins (Martin Lawrence) is a well respected talk show host who leaves Los Angeles to reconcile with his family in the Deep South. Rather than being a pleasant reunion with his family, the trip becomes a bruising disaster and a rival competition with a childhood nemesis.
Welcome home Roscoe Jenkins! Or should I say welcome to the dusty, dim collection of DVDs that I will never watch again. It is clear that this is direct-to-DVD material with an A-list cast worthy of funnier matter. Lets cut this game of spot the laughs short and just guide this overwrought bag of mixed emotions and unfunny gags to the dumpster where it belongs. When the film isn’t introducing us to irritating characters and shoving good morals down our throats it’s just an erratic execution of bodily harm, an unnecessary display of pimped out fashion and pea-brained juvenile antics.
The cast tries hard, but the frantic attempts at making the implausible plausible and possibly jerking a couple forced laughs out of the helpless audience becomes tired early. And when things finally take a quick turn for the better in the second half, it instantly goes back to the same dull fashion that cluttered the agonizing first half. The only true minor chuckles came from the family clown, Mike Epps’ Cousin Reggie, who uses his usual goofy style to make some sort of entertainment happen. The only part that remotely resorts to fun is the obstacle course scene, and even this scene feels childish. I never thought I’d say this but more gross out gags and potty humor would have at least been at level with this type of comedy.
Basically, this so-called “comedy” depends of Martin Lawrence’s facial expressions and Mike Epps’ foolish personality to get by. Problem is Mike Epps isn’t always funny and, while Martin Lawrence does make funny faces, he can’t make enough of them to bring consistent laughs in an overwelcomed running time. This material doesn’t deserve such a talented cast. In fact, a cast of unknowns and a direct-to-DVD release would have been sufficient. Other than it being painful to watch, this is a harmless, instantly forgettable, and ultimately flustered comedy absent of any true humor. Just skip it and you’ll thank me later. 1/5 stars
Written by Derek Fleek at www.popcornmonsters.com
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins is available in popcornmonsters.com’s prize catalog for 2000 pts or 20 reviews.