Indiana Daily Student

'Kings of Comedy' more than the court jester

The title of the movie is pretty sketchy. To call these four men, who went on tour in the winter of 2000 and who have had moderate success on television "The Original Kings of Comedy," is a stretch to say the least. Even if the definition were narrowed to the original kings of black comedy, one wonders who gave them permission to steal the title from Richard Pryor or even Eddie Murphy.

The Original Kings of Comedy - R
Steve Harvey, D.L. Hughley, Cedric the Entertainer and Bernie Mac
Directed by:
Spike Lee
Now playing:
Showplace 12 West

That said, Steve Harvey, D. L. Hughley, Cedric the Entertainer and Bernie Mac do give their audience a royal dose of comedy in the new Spike Lee joint that intersperses comedy shows from a giant stadium in Charlotte with backstage and on-the-town scenes with the performers. The focus is on the differences between black and white, with heavy helpings of sex, marriage, kid and momma jokes. Despite the predictability of the subject matter, the jokes are fresh and riotous. Harvey is the host for the evening, which basically means that he gets to do three acts instead of one. As the tamest act in the show, Harvey makes a good middle ground and his jokes are funny without rubbing anyone the wrong way. The bright young Hughley had audience members rolling in the aisles by covering every subject from the African-American work day to correct wiping technique to his mean Grammy always blaming him for her high light bill. The wacked-out psychopathic antics of Bernie Mac were an interesting twist from the rest of the show. Although he is very witty at times, some of his more outrageous jokes involve misogyny and child-abuse, leaving viewers with a very uncomfortable feeling if they are indeed laughing at them. Cedric the Entertainer steals the show with his signature, expert blend of dancing, music, sound-effects, physical and verbal comedy. His rendition of a stand-off between rivaling break-dancing gangs at a club is the funniest bit in the show. Fans of stand-up should definitely take advantage of the $7 movie ticket price, as a live show of this caliber would cost at least three times as much. Just make sure to go to the bathroom before the movie, and please, pregnant women and those with heart conditions, consult a physician before entering the theater.

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