Directed by : Craig Brewer
Written by: Kenya Barris, David Sheffield & Barry W. Blaustein
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Tracy Morgan, Leslie Jones & Wesley Snipes
* The Plot *
Coming 2 America is a sequel to the 1988 Eddie Murphy classic Coming to America. The film picks up 30 years after the original film with Murphy as now King Akeem in Zamunda. As a rival warlord who feels unappreciated and respecting by Zamunda royalty. Played by Wesley Snipes, he is attempting to marry his son to Akeem’s only child, his daughter or go to war against his kingdom.
Akeem discovers that he has a son in America from a one night stand he had no memory of from his visit to Queens in the 80’s. Akeem then must find his son and get a male heir to save Zamunda. Of course hilarity ensues and this time we take someone from Queens and he’s the fish out of water in Africa trying to find his place in the Royal family and deal with the culture shock.
*My Thoughts *
Prince Akeem 1988 / King Akeem 2021
Is Coming 2 America great and hilarious?
Well no not really. But is it fun? Yes is it enjoyable? Yes. Is it full of callbacks, references and is it great to see Eddie Murphy back on the big screen? HELL YEAH IT IS
Where coming 2 America works best is when it uses and let’s us enjoy Eddie Murphy. His screen time as well as Arsenio Hall seems lacking and when they aren’t on screen we want to see them.
Another great actor in this film is the prince’s uncle played by Tracy Morgan who again is always funny but feels underused. The entire cast in incredible with additions like Morgan Freeman, Leslie Jones, John Legend etc. There’s something missing from the movie and I can’t exactly put my finger on it.
The Prince played by Jermaine Fowler is good and plays his role well for the most part but he hasn’t the charisma that Murphy had in the original that pulls you completely into the character.
Wesley Snipes was a standout and a highlight as he seems to be the one actor having the most fun. He’s just chewing up the scenery and dancing he’s bombastic and over the top and he is incredible.
My main issue with the film is that it feels like paint by numbers. That creative spark and originality is there in the background somewhere but it just didn’t completely translate to the screen for me.
Overall though the film is enjoyable and a great companion piece to the original. Eddie Murphy is back with this and 2019’s Dolemite is my name as well as a planned stand up comedy return too. I feel blessed to be alive in a time where I may get to see Eddie Murphy do stand up comedy again he retired the best at age 28 so it’s been a minute alright.