It’s been 14 years since ‘The Best Man’ was released in 1999, but the whole gang is finally back for a holiday romping sequel. And you better strap in, because this Christmas movie doesn’t skimp on the laughs OR the drama!
It may have taken a little too long to revisit the Taye Diggs-led ensemble hit, The Best Man, but writer-director Malcolm D. Lee is making up for 14 years of lost time with Best Man Holiday (in theaters Nov. 15), building on the original and adding a little holiday cheer. So is this Christmas flick the movie of the season? See what the critics thought!
‘Best Man Holiday’ Reviews
Best Man Holiday is more traditional than its sexually frank humor might indicate, with faith and charity ultimately given pride of place (right alongside human pettiness). But even if some of the crudeness and the drama feel forced, it’s hard to hate.
Be ready to reach for a tissue, say “amen” and sigh more than a few times, for the film has all the chaos and clutter of a big holiday gathering.
For all of its appealing actors, the film’s true stars are those gorgeous sets — lush, immaculate, sparkling and vast. Seeing this movie is like moving into Williams-Sonoma for two hours. If only the script were as tasteful.
Writer-director Malcolm D. Lee shouldn’t have waited 14 years to do a sequel. The Best Man Holiday reunites the characters for a Christmas-weekend house party, and what ensues is like a better-written Tyler Perry movie: too many life crises rooted in too much recycled backstory. The actors are winning, especially Taye Diggs as the now-struggling Harper, Regina Hall as the ex-stripper Candace, and the great Morris Chestnut as football star Lance. But The Best Man Holiday is an eggnog that’s sticky-sweet and heavy at the same time.
It’s hard not to feel like we’re being manipulated, but even here, there are occasional moments of honesty, sold mainly by the actors’ understated delivery and patience, and by the fact that director Lee knows not to get in the way. The Best Man Holiday is an inelegant movie, but its cast is so damn likable that we’re still willing to follow them — even when they’re not going anywhere.
This sounds like the exact sort of thing we’re looking to see when the snow starts to fall and the holidays ramp up. What about you, HollywoodLifers? Will you see Best Man Holiday? Let us know!
— Andrew Gruttadaro