A Madea Family Funeral                review by Bobby Blakey

Tyler Perry took the film industry by storm when he brought Madea from stage to screen in his first film Diary of a Man Black Woman in 2005. The stories were always filled with comedy, but surrounded by an emotional story that made them so much more. Over time, the idea stayed intact, but Madea stepped more into the forefront and they lost some of their serious side. After 10 films Perry is bringing Madea back for one last film in A Madea Family Funeral co-starring Cassi Davis, Patrice Lovely, Ciera Payton, KJ Smith, David Otunga, Rome Flynn, Courtney Burrell, Jen Harper, Quin Walters, Christianee Porter, Aeriél Miranda, Joel Rush, and Derek Morgan, but can it go out with the laughs and drama like he started or will it be a finale not worth mourning?

A Madea Family Funeral follows a joyous family reunion that becomes a hilarious nightmare as Madea and the crew travel to backwoods Georgia, where they find themselves unexpectedly planning a funeral that might unveil unsavory family secrets. I was a huge fan of Perry’s earlier films, but as Madea became more front and center they have been more miss than hit for me. Going in I was hoping for a return to form with this being the last outing and I can say there were a ton of laughs, but the film isn’t without its issues. There are essentially two aspects to this film with one being Madea and the regulars from the previous film including Bam, Joe and Hattie and the other side being the family they are going to see.

The majority of the moments of Madea and her squad were hilarious and a ton of fun to watch. There wasn’t anything with these characters that you haven’t already seen so you know what you are getting there, but there were some pretty great back and forth dialogues that were filled with laughs and quick wit. Perry stepped up his character game with adding a fourth to the mix introducing Heathrow. He is a fun character but still not able to bring the 

laughs like Joe and Madea. I give Perry props for pulling off so many hates I his productions especially sequences that showcase all his characters at the same time.

 

Sadly the other side of the film wasn’t as successful. Despite focusing on the usual secrets and drama it never fully packs the needed punch for you to fully buy into it. A lot of this has to do with the overall performances that felt more like a soap opera than a feature film. It honestly had me a bit concerned at the beginning, but as it switched to Madea and the crew it found its footing. As it moved forward it had hints of being ok, but sadly it kept falling back into some bad performances and klunky dialogue delivery. Sucks because had it had a better execution it could have been a much better film.

While this one just didn’t work all around I still applaud Perry for everything he has done after debuting this character on the big screen. He has told the stories he wanted to tell in his way and built something to be proud of. Love it or hate it there is no denying his success and impact on the industry with the Madea character. If you love Perry’s films or just Madea herself then give this one a shot and decide for yourself.

In addition to the film this release includes bonus content including deleted scenes, outtakes, and featurettes that take fans behind bringing this final Madea film to the big screen. Join Madea one last time with A Madea Family Funeral available now on digital, Blu-ray and DVD from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.

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