Roscoe Jenkins has it all; a beautiful fiancée, a huge house, a best selling book, and a popular talk show. All of that gets tested when he goes home for his parents 50th anniversary. I’ve been an off again on again Martin Lawrence fan. It seems like the past decade Lawrence has become somewhat of a novelty act. The films where he is the headliner wind up being themed almost to the point where I wonder when he and Ron Schneider will do a film together, its been that bad. Luckily some of the directors that he’s worked with know that Lawrence needs to be surrounded by a strong supporting cast so that the man doesn’t have to carry the load all on his own. Malcolm D. Lee is one of those directors (though I’ll only vouch for his turn at directing an Everybody Hates Chris episode and nothing else in his resume).
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins has a pleasantly diverse cast of actors and actresses that work well as a supporting factor and allow Lawrence to do his thing while adding to the story. The most stand out characters of the film from the supporting cast goes to both Mike Epps who basically plays himself and Mo’Nique who never fails to bring the laughter with aggressive comedy. James Earl Jones plays Lawrence’s father but doesn’t really play a huge factor in the film other then to give anyone who ever had a father like the one he portrays an in on the story. Joy Bryant plays a character that seemed to me to be molded out of the image of Apprentice celebrity Omarosa but went from being somewhat unlikable to a more contrived villain. Finally there is Soul Food’s beautiful Nicole Ari Parker who plays the one that got away and a renewed love interest for Lawrence. Though her role isn’t necessarily huge the plot allows her to become the heroine of the film.
As for the story. I laughed probably more then I expected to but I had some problems with the film as a whole. The story is fine as it is but your made to stomach strong sexuality and not from any of the characters you’d have expected, and what’s up with the N bomb? It might just be me that has a problem with the use of the word but then again I’m the one stacking the points here so the film definitely loses some credit on that end. Other then that the film is surprisingly hilarious. Nothing that’s going to win massive awards or go down in history as a classic but if your looking for a way to escape the daily grind and find your laughter this movie will definitely do it.