Starring: Ice Cube, Common, Cedric The Entertainer, Regina Hall, Eve, Nicki Minaj, Anthony Anderson, Sean Patrick Thomas, Jazsmin Lewis, JB Smoove, Deon Cole, Troy Garity, Lamorne Morris, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Tyga
Directed By: Malcolm D. Lee
Ice Cube has something to say. He’s used his Barbershop franchise to tell the story, but this story has a lot more heart than the first two films. I’ll admit, it’s been a while since I’ve seen a Barbershop film, but I feel like this is probably the best, and my favorite in the series.
This is a black lives matter movie from someone who honestly wants things to change. Ice Cube is trying to help the conversation, and he’s fighting the best way he knows how. Ideas. This is about gang violence. This is about the crime in Chicago. This is about black men being men, and not gangsters. Ice Cube had something to say a long time ago when he was in NWA, and he’s still got a lot to say.
He’s assembled a cast of who’s who of black actors. Talent. They use their talent to talk about a ton of issues, about men and women, about violence, about community, and it’s one of the smartest films I’ve seen this year. I think we need more films like this.
As far as performances go, I thought Nicki Minaj was entertaining. I thin I like her more as an actress than as a rapper, but that’s just me. I still think Common is a bit stiff as an actor, but he also gets better with each role. Regina Hall also does some great work here. I mean, Ice Cube has grown a lot over his career, and this might be one of his best roles. Of course, it’s a role he’s familiar with, but he handles it well.
It doesn’t matter who you are, where you came from, what color of skin you have, Barbershop: The Next Cut is a fantastic film, and you might just get a perspective different from your own.
FINAL GRADE: A