Probably half out of nostalgia and half out of pure enjoyment, I find this holiday comedy entertaining year round.
Ice Cube enjoyed great success with the first two “Friday” films and decided the third should come at the most joyous time of the year, Christmas. Ice Cube is back as Craig Jones, and joining him for a second time is his cousin Day-Day played by Mike Epps. The film also stars Terry Crews and Katt Williams, with return performances by John Witherspoon, Anna Maria Horsford and Clifton Powell.
Craig and Day-Day are finally living out on their own, they have brand new jobs working security for a rundown strip-mall and all is looking on the up and up. With their first day on the job being the next morning it looks as if their luck is finally beginning to turn to the good. Until their apartment is broken into by a man dressed as Santa Claus suit. To make it even more of a blow to their good fortune, their rent money was among what was stolen. To recoup the money the pair decides to throw a party on Christmas Eve, by charging admission they hope they can pay the rent before the massive son of the landlord has his way with them both.
Sure “Friday After Next” doesn’t pack an intricate plot or story-line, nor does it have award worthy acting performances (although they are great). The positive thing is you know such things going into a film with this angle of humor. The main point of the film is to make you laugh, and in my opinion this film does just that, and it makes me laugh over and over.
Despite the weak plot, the film packs a colorful cast of eccentric characters that are hilarious and throughout the course of the script, all are able to have a moment to shine. Everyone adds to this film and manages to deliver a couple of moments of amusement. The main addition of Terry Crews was an major upgrade over Deebo from the first two films, he has more range in acting skill and rather than simply being the visual antagonist of the film, he is able to deliver some humorous lines and moments during his scenes.
The addition of Christmas as the setting was masterful in my opinion, the holiday season added something to this film that just makes it more complete, or at least more entertaining of a story. I feel without the holiday concept of this film, it would have faltered in success, and resulted in a rather drab comedic attempt that would still have some humorous moments.
Many may not have enjoyed this film as much as myself but if you have not seen it, give it a try. It’s a great holiday movie to sit back and enjoy (once the kids are asleep). The film moves quickly and with great characters filling each scene the end-credits creep up on you quick. I watch this film every year about this time and continue to find it hilarious on many levels.
The writing is not what some would say classically executed, but it is witty, extremely fun, and well-crafted for each of the characters. There is a good amount of in-your-face humor, but the best comedic moments come from some of the subtle character dialogue. I pretty much laugh throughout and love the holiday feel the film managed to capture.
“Friday After Next” will not be considered ground-breaking by many, but it doesn’t matter, it does what it set out to do, make people laugh and feel entertained for a little over an hour. This one always highly entertains and is definitely a must watch during the Christmas season and should be talked about more in peoples favorite holiday films.
MPAA Rating: R (For language, sexual content and drug use)