Summary: The African monarch Akeem learns he has a long-lost son in the United States and must return to America to meet this unexpected heir and build a relationship with his son.
This will be a short review.
The Characters. Eddie Murphy returns as Prince Akeem and he’s likable as he was. He is older, a father and a husband but he still has some of that naivety that is cute and might make you giggle. I liked that he still had chemistry with Shari Headley (Lisa) and that their marriage was nice and had some real elements to it. Kiki Layne (Meeka) was good, I wish the movie followed her a bit more, in fact, I wish the movie followed the daughters in general. They were more interesting to me than Lavelle, but she was great, very strong and likable. Bella Murphy (Omma) and Akiley Love (Tinashe) were the younger daughters and they were cute. Arsenio Hall returns as Semmi and he’s not that involved as he was in the first, but he’s still great. Jermaine Fowler (Lavelle) was fine, I was unsure if I was going to like him throughout the movie, but I did. Wesley Snipes as General Izzi was funny at times. Honestly, it felt like a reunion and I guess ultimately that’s what this movie was for. Everyone just seemed to be having fun.
It’s Funny….sometimes. First, humor is subjective so what I may find funny may not be funny to someone else and vice versa. I laughed but not a lot and not as hard as I have with the first film. Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall are funny together, but they don’t have a ton of scenes together in this. Wesley Snipes and his Nextdoorians got some laughs from me and I may have giggled in other places. I think the lion scene also made me laugh. I should have written down the moments that made me laugh.
The Amazing Costumes. I should have known that the costumes were done by Ruth E. Carter who won her Oscar for doing the costume design for Black Panther. They were beautiful. All the women’s clothes in Zamunda were literally events. The flower ladies, the bath ladies and Mirembe who were all ‘servants” wore lovely clothes. But the royal family, Lisa and their three daughters had AMAZING outfits. A red outfit at the end of the film is probably one of my favorites. Also, everything the middle daughter wears had my jaw on the floor. Like, she has great taste! lol. All the men looked great too. Usually, I don’t find myself paying much attention to the men’s costumes if they’re not period pieces and what not, but they were great too. The Nextdoorians (lol this name) had a more “army” based look but Bopoto (Teyana Taylor) had great looks as well. The styling for everyone’s hair was also nice.
The Heart of the Film. So, I’m not going to spoil the ending but it’s familiar lol, but I liked that to me, the message of the film is family and being true to yourself. If we remember from the first, which is brought up a lot, Akeem was non-traditional and he wanted to find love and follow his heart, which is great, things happen where he has to remember that again. I thought overall it was cute. That is all.
It’s Funny….sometimes. First, humor is subjective so what I may find funny may not be funny to someone else and vice versa. I laughed but not a lot and not as hard as I have with the first film. Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall are funny together, but they don’t have a ton of scenes together in this. Wesley Snipes and his Nextdoorians got some laughs from me and I may have giggled in other places, but I don’t remember laughing as much as I could have or as much as they wanted me too. I had to add this ending part for the cons because I believe it belonged in both places. Not to mention, Leslie Jones is not that funny to me, she had a few moments that might have gotten a chuckle but being loud isn’t funny all the time.
It feels the same. I know the saying, “if it’s not broke don’t fix it” but sequels aren’t supposed to be the first movie… again. The movie isn’t a carbon copy of the first movie, but it feels like the same movie. When I watch sequels, I expect some similarities because it’s the same characters, generally just a continuation but with some plot additions, I felt like Lavelle and Akeem were going through the same motions as Akeem and Jaffe. That may have been the point but because Lavelle wasn’t as interesting to me as other characters, it was noticeable to me. Not to mention, some gags are the same, not as funny personally, and some characters (who probably should be dead LOL) are still there, which is clearly for fan service lol. Also, also, there are legit clips from the first film, or added scenes with Leslie Jones superimposed into them.
More Character Opportunities. I wish some characters got more opportunities to be characters or for us to know more about them. I feel this in particular with Akeem and his daughters, which was a minor part of the plot, but I think the movie should have followed them. Then, it seemed like Lisa didn’t quite enjoy having Mary (Leslie Jones) around for a while, especially when she would overstep some boundaries lol but then they seemed fine later. I wish we could have gotten another scene (the movie is short so why not?) between these two ladies to help justify that scene at the party. I wish Lavelle got to have more scenes with the sisters, he and Meeka had a moment and it was nice, but I wish he got that with Omma and Tinashe too that went beyond the studying moments.
Overall, I think Coming 2 America is fine, it’s harmless and I overall enjoyed it. It’s one of those movies that obviously didn’t need to be made but I’m not up in arms about the fact that it exists. It felt like a reunion and I think in the end, that’s what it was for the original cast and then bringing in the younger cast. I thought Eddie Murphy was good as Akeem, but this Akeem is a little different from the one we saw in the first but he’s still likable. All the characters are fine. The costume design is beautiful, the look of Zamunda is beautiful and I liked that we got to see a bit more of it here. The overall heart of the movie is there and I like that everyone gets to have a change of heart moment but it really feels settled with Akeem since the movie rises and falls with him, even if may not be the young wide-eyed Prince anymore. There’s humor but some of it will be dated down the line, the same way, humor from the first one might be now lol. But humor is subjective because some stuff that was intended to be funny did not make me laugh. Also, it feels too much like the first one. As I said, sequels shouldn’t be copies of the first, they can feel similar in ways but at least for me, not the entire film and this one really felt the same to me. It didn’t feel as if anything was really different. Where the difference could have been was following Akeem’s daughters, that line was more interesting to me and I think it was a missed opportunity. But I also don’t care enough to explain or even think through what I would have done instead like I do for other movies lol. In the end, Coming 2 America is fine, it’s a warm movie and while it does not hold a candle to the first, I’m sure this will allow newcomers to go back and enjoy the first (which is also on Amazon Prime).
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Coming 2 America (2)? What did you think? Did you like it? Hate it? Meh? Let me know in the comments below!
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