Genres: Comedy and Adaptation
Running Time: 1 hr. 43 min.
Release Date: February 20th, 2009 (wide)
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for mature thematic material, drug content, some violence and sexual situations.
Directed by: Tyler Perry
JJ Raiting: A-
Madea (Tyler Perry) pushed the law too far and is sent to jail. Candy (Keshia Knight Pulliam [the Rudy from the ‘Cosby Show’]), a prostitute, is recognized at court by Joshua (Derek Luke) an assistant district attorney. They rekindle a lost friendship with a dark past. His faïence Cora (Tamela J. Mann), who is jealous beyond reason of their relationship, throws several tantrums. Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to Jail.
Tyler Perry is hilarious. His character Madea is just funny. Funny like being a the lunch table and the friend that is a comedian just spouts out line after line of funny and laughter just bellows out of everyone sitting there, but it’s not so much it causes tears. It’s just feel good laughter. Speaking of feel good Tyler Perry has a knack of weaving his movies with a lesson. This one is no exception. In all the laughter and the cringing (from the second story) there’s a good lesson that everyone should learn before their life is over.
Madea’s story is funny because she is so determined to do what she wants to do. She will say anything to get where she wants to be. Her scene with Dr. Phil is great. There is a longer version of the scene that plays during the credits. It’s even better.
The Joshua/Candy storyline is serious. I think some people would find it jarring that the film goes from serious to funny to serious. It’s not a problem for me, but I can see how it would be an issue for others. This is how his other movies with Madea work. As odd as it might be that such a funny character would be mixed in with such a serious storyline does make for an odd viewing situation. It also works like salt and sweet dinners work, perfectly. It is also like having two movies in one, in a way. Let’s say it’s like sweet cornbread and veggie soup. Now I want some.
What is good about Tyler Perry is that his movies have a lesson and they are not vulgar. They are not out to shock or make people feel uncomfortable. They’re out there to entertain and teach a valuable lesson. It’s like a long fable of sorts. Madea Goes to Jail is also a great movie to repeat. There are lines in there I just wish I could remember and ones I hack when I do.
It is an enjoyable film for those that enjoy Madea. If you like the other movies this one will surely not disappoint. You’ll want to stay seated when the credits roll and enjoy the extended clip of Medea vs. Dr. Phil. You’ll snicker. You’ll find them awesome since they ad-libbed some of the lines. Tyler Perry as Medea, Joe and Brian is like having a three in one sale. You pay for one but you get three great characters that are so different that never do you see that they are the same person other than remembering they’re all Tyler Perry. He’s that good.
Madea Goes To Jail is right on the money for Tyler Perry. He is certainly not a one trick pony. He plays three characters and directs, what talent. He surely knows how to create likable characters. He puts a spin on Madea to make her likeable without being obnoxious even though she is being obnoxious to the characters on the screen. I believe that’s pretty difficult to accomplish, but he does it. He made me laugh, think and have a good time. I recommend this to those that want the same.