Coming 2 America (2021)
March 5, 2021 6:40 PM - Subscribe

The African monarch Akeem (Eddie Murphy) learns he has a long-lost son in the United States and must return to America with his best friend Semmi (Arsenio Hall) to meet this unexpected heir and build a relationship with his son (Jermaine Fowler).

Also starring Leslie Jones, Shari Headley, KiKi Layne, James Earl Jones, Teyana Taylor, Nomzamo Mbatha, Wesley Snipes, Morgan Freeman, and Louie Anderson. Directed by Craig Brewer (Hustle & Flow). Streaming in the US on Amazon Prime.
posted by DirtyOldTown (16 comments total)
They really leaned in to the cheese on this one, so it worked for me despite the overall plot being completely ridiculous. I don't think it would stand on its own as well, but if you've seen the first film, you'll probably get a kick out of it unless you have some hangup about self-referential series.
posted by wierdo at 1:59 AM on March 6, 2021

I agree. It's an 80's/90's style comedy sequel: more of the same, coasting on your warm fuzziest for the first film and the characters.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:15 AM on March 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

Completely agree, and I enjoyed the way it poked fun at itself in process (e.g. the scene with the son and the dresser in the garden at night).
posted by Preserver at 7:26 AM on March 6, 2021

I'm interested in watching C2A, but I'm hesitant. From the looks of the sequel, it appears to have the same shift in tone that happened between The Princess Diaries and its sequel. TPD was kinda/sorta realistic. But TPD's sequel really laid on the quirk. Is C2A the same way?
posted by Stuka at 8:03 AM on March 6, 2021

I haven't seen the first film since it came out over thirty years ago, but I remember it being much better than the sequel. Murphy's character wasn't as funny without the fish out of water theme, and Hall's character needed more screen time. There were more characters fighting for fewer laughs, and Snipe wasn't funny at all.
posted by Beholder at 8:22 AM on March 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

Overall I liked it a lot. Good connections to the first film and it had a good story. Wasn't too thrilled with the depiction of the children of Nexdoria though. I feel that a better title could have been "Coming From America".
posted by alchemist at 10:54 AM on March 6, 2021 [2 favorites]

The set, the costumes and the music were really outstanding. It definitely poked fun at itself, however I didn’t feel like it was too cheesy. The story is predictable but still fun. It was a worthy, modern sequel.
posted by gryphonlover at 10:56 AM on March 6, 2021

The most bananas factoid I have read is that the interiors of the Zamundan palace were not built sets... they were mostly the actual interiors of rapper Rick Ross's home.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:45 PM on March 6, 2021 [5 favorites]

This was fun enough, but I'm not entirely sure the movie figured out what kind of movie it wanted to be. It felt like they wanted optimism and progressiveness but there's no depth to it - which is fine.

Totally loved the actors taking on multiple parts and the best thing about this movie.

Definitely agree, it could have used more Arsenio Hall. On the Eddie Murphy revival, I liked 'Dolomite' a lot better. Jermaine Fowler is a looker. Wesley Snipes looks healthier physically and mentally than he has in a very very long time.

Alluded to by Leslie Jones' character, but probably deliberately left unexplored, was the economic differences between (the elites of) Zamunda and (the regular people of) Queens. If I'm nostalgic for anything about this sequel, it's the grit and dirt of the 1980's.

Is there anything modern that scratches that itch, without having to watch 80s movies again?

I'm a bit surprised that the original was released in 1988, my mistaken memory places it much earlier in the 80s. But I guess the 90s didn't really start until well into the decade.
posted by porpoise at 2:32 PM on March 6, 2021

I hadn't seen the first until a few nights ago and I loved it. This sequel is atrocious. The movies are as different as can be! It reminded me of the difference between Ghostbusters and the recent remake. There's a certain sensibility to studio comedies now where they're afraid to go a single minute without making a zany and cartoonish joke, so the audience gets battered with a bunch of hacky and hackneyed jokes that ruin the characters. The first movie didn't have that many one-liners... for the most part, you were just charmed by Prince Akeem's naive optimism. It was a sweet little rom-com. There's no way the sequel could be confused for a rom-com.

And then there are a ton of jokes like Leslie Jones's character not knowing what caviar is but saying that she has a cousin named Caviar. How is that different than Orangejello/Lemonjello jokes? If a bunch of white filmmakers put in that line, there's no question that it'd be outright racist. When writers feel they had to cram in one-liners and don't have inspired ideas, they just grab at whatever low-hanging fruit is available, and you end up with jokes like that one.

I did love the king's funeral though. Such a stately way to die.
posted by painquale at 2:36 PM on March 6, 2021 [2 favorites]

Wesley Snipes' character had his own drumline, so I sort of loved his Idi Amin-but-fun vibe.

I watched this in a watch party with friends, and I think that made it way more fun. I was only sad that we didn't get Darryl back with Soul Glo. If they made a series with Leslie Jones and Tracey Morgan as siblings, I would watch every minute of it.
posted by gladly at 8:24 PM on March 6, 2021 [2 favorites]

As a send-up/sequel to the original, which I loved, it was fine, even pretty good. There was more cool dancing, and Colin Jost’s cameo was hilarious.

But the script was downright painful. It was so choppy and disjointed as it tried to cover too many things, and the daughters, whose existence was supposed to be the main plot, got nothing. And they’d never heard of Show, Don’t Tell? “He’s going to be an ambassador in New York!” Thumbs down.
posted by Melismata at 8:11 AM on March 7, 2021

It's an ok diversion for the weekend (i mean I'm a cheap laugh but there's also a lot to at least laugh at) but I'm kinda scratching my head that his son is basically the result of a non-consensual hookup is played for laughs and also as something that's sort of his fault. But that really is more of a reflection of the larger social mores with guys versus girls.
posted by cendawanita at 8:41 AM on March 7, 2021 [1 favorite]

I think they made a mistake by setting so much of the film in Africa, especially considering they didn’t shoot on location, and as a result every interior shot had the shiny fake sheen of a Hollywood set heavily augmented with green screens and cut-rate CGI while all the exteriors could have been filmed in one large backyard just outside of Atlanta.

And while I’m always happy to see John Amos, I thought he was criminally underused. His character provided some of the biggest laughs from the first film, but they didn’t give him much to do this time around.

And I’d love to see Leslie Jones and Tracy Morgan team up again in a different project.
posted by Atom Eyes at 2:26 PM on March 7, 2021

My in-laws, who will watch ANYTHING (and mostly during the middle of the night), started this and "noped" out of it after 20m.
posted by rozcakj at 2:38 PM on March 7, 2021 Maybe if they dropped off all the racist bits there is a decent movie in there somewhere.
posted by asra at 2:12 PM on March 13, 2021

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