A Madea Family Funeral

2019

4/5
A Madea Family Funeral

Summary

A joyous family reunion becomes a hilarious nightmare as Madea and the crew travel to backwoods Georgia, where they find themselves unexpectedly planning a funeral that might unveil unsavory family secrets.

Production: The Tyler Perry Company, Tyler Perry Studios, Lionsgate

Direction: Tyler Perry

Starring: Cassi Davis, Patrice Lovely, Tyler Perry, Mike Tyson, Ciera Payton

Release Date: March 1, 2019

Genre: Action

Run time: 1h 49min

Rating: 4/5

Review

The film opens with the children of Vianne and Anthony planning their surprise 40th wedding anniversary at their home. Madea, Joe, Brian, Aunt Bam, and Hattie travel to backwoods Georgia for the anniversary party. On the way, they deal with a manic, rude police officer. At last they get to their hotel–and catch Anthony in a sex act with Renee, Vianne’s best friend. In the next room is Anthony’s son A.J.–with Gia, his brother Jesse’s fiancée. Anthony suffers a heart attack from his activity with Renee and is rushed to the hospital, where he is pronounced dead.

A.J. and Madea’s group keep the exact cause of death from the rest of the family. Renee and A.J. blackmail each other to keep their secrets hidden, and A.J blames Renee for his father’s affair and death.

Vianne asks Madea to plan Anthony’s funeral and says she wants to have it in two days, which makes everyone suspicious. The undertaker at the funeral gives Madea, Bam, and Hattie a creepy vibe and informs them that Anthony died smiling and that the casket can’t close because of Anthony’s erection. At the funeral, numerous mistresses from Anthony’s past show up, visibly upsetting Vianne, and the service lasts for hours until the casket abruptly opens (for the aforementioned reason).

At the repast, A.J. drunkenly reveals Anthony and Renee’s affair and Renee exposes A.J.’s affair with Gia, which makes his wife Carol, to whom A.J. had been disrespectful all weekend finally decide to leave him. A.J. and Jesse fight, and Vianne tearfully reveals that Anthony had been cheating for years and she only stayed with him to protect her family; but now she realizes it’s time to live for herself. The film ends with Vianne happily wishing the family luck as she leaves for Las Vegas with Roy (Mike Tyson).

There are jokes about how long it takes for Black folks to schedule funerals. Much is made of how quickly Vianne (Jen Harper) wants to inter her husband, Anthony (Derek Morgan). Madea is only given two days to pull it all together, inspiring numerous complaints from her family.

“A Madea Family Funeral” brings to the forefront—and mocks—the unspoken reason why we’re told not to speak ill of the dead: Sometimes the person in the casket is a ripe bastard who deserves to be sent to Hell floating on a sea of truthful descriptions of their character. And yet, decorum must be kept. Of course, Madea is pure id, so she can’t resist taking her swipes at respectability. Of the suspiciously large number of unknown women who showed up, she asks “if you knew the deceased, raise your hand.” After everyone raises their hands, she adds “if you knew the deceased in the Biblical sense, raise your hands.” The same amount of hands go up.

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