Boo! A Madea Halloween Review: The Best Madea Movie Yet!
Boo! A Madea Halloween is the second feature length Madea film that is not based on one of Perry’s original stage plays. In fact, this film was actually inspired by a scene in Chris Rock’s Top Five. Someone at Lionsgate must have seen that film, found the scene to be hilarious, and called Perry up and told him to write the script. This is a true story which was confirmed by Tyler Perry himself at the World Premiere of Boo! A Madea Halloween in Los Angeles.
In her ninth appearance on the big screen, Madea (Tyler Perry) is summoned to her son Brian’s (Tyler Perry) house to make sure that his daughter Tiffany (Diamond White) doesn’t attend a college fraternity party on Halloween night. Determined to outsmart Madea, Tiffany and her friend Aday (Liza Koshy) come up with a plan to scare Madea and sneak out to the party. However, Tiffany’s plan doesn’t work as Madea quickly learns that Tiffany has snuck out. Determined to bring Tiffany home, Madea heads out on Halloween night only to be faced with evil clowns, zombies, and obnoxious drunk teenagers.
I have been a big fan of the Madea ever since I saw Diary of a Mad Black Woman back in 2005. At that time, I had no idea who Tyler Perry was nor did I ever hear about his film before walking into the theater. Diary of a Mad Black Woman opened at number one and took Hollywood by complete surprise. Who knew that Tyler Perry, a man who wrote stage plays, could turn those plays into feature-length films only to become box office hits one after another.
Boo! A Madea Halloween is destined to become another box office hit for Tyler Perry and Lionsgate. The film works extremely well and sticks to the concept that you see in the trailers and tv spots. Madea is back and in top form. This is hands down the funniest Madea appearance to date. We first see Madea sitting with Aunt Bam (Cassi Davis) handing out Halloween candy on her front lawn. The commentary by Madea judging the children’s costumes is priceless. There is one scene in particular where a little boy dressed up as a cow walks over to Madea and Bam. I laughed so hard at this scene that I honestly can’t remember the last time I laughed that hard at something in a long time.
Just like the previous Madea films, this film works best when it is focused on Madea, Bam, Hattie (Patrice Lovely), and Joe (Tyler Perry) which luckily this time around is the vast majority of the film’s runtime. These four characters have great banter and deliver the biggest laughs. I loved Bam’s obsession with having a weed card while I am always amused by Joe’s mumbling and crude comments. The chemistry between all these characters is just spot on, and they all feel like overexaggerated versions of real people. I think that is why so many people love the character of Madea. She might be silly and over the top but she feels genuine and at times makes some pretty convincing arguments. The constant one liners and back and forth between Madea and the others were hysterical.
There are a lot of secondary characters in this film, and like all of Perry’s films, they are a mixed bag. I have just come to accept that the performances in Madea films aren’t supposed to be great but instead Perry trying to give mainly unknowns an opportunity to star in a film. Most of the film’s young cast consists of social media stars. For every decent performance, there is one that isn’t very good. Out of the younger cast, I think Liza Koshy‘s Aday was the strongest. I felt like her performance was very consistent and I could see her going places. I was kind of on the fence about Diamond White as Tiffany. At times, I felt like she was decent, but at others, I felt like she was trying too hard or didn’t come off as believable. The entire fraternity cast ranged from ok to really bad.
On the other hand, the adult cast was great. I loved Patrice Lovely and Cassi Davis in the film. They each had several moments where they shined, and as I said earlier, their chemistry was spot on. Tyler Perry is always great as Joe and Madea. Madea’s one-liners have never been better, and I love her rants. Joe is Joe, but he has some great lines, and I loved the whole back and forth between him and Brian about cursing. As Brian, Perry plays the passive father role well and I think his speech near the end of the film was well delivered and surprisingly impactful.
The only shift from the Halloween storyline is a subplot about how Brian disciplines his daughter Tiffany. Perry looks at the ways that parents attempt to control their children today in comparison to those of the past. Perry makes a well-crafted argument by showing how Brian has become too passive and lets Tiffany walk all over him. He lacks parental control and Madea helps him realize that he must speak up in order to be taken seriously and respected by his daughter.
Boo! A Madea Halloween delivers big laughs and is the best Madea film to date. It is everything that fans of Madea have come to appreciate and love about the title character. A Madea Halloween stands out from the previous films because it is a comedy first rather than a drama. Yes, Perry adds in a family subplot but it doesn’t overpower the comedic tone of the film. There are plenty of laughs to be had and great chemistry between the adult leads. Just like most of Perry’s previous projects, Boo! A Madea Halloween is made to be entertaining and it entertained the hell out of me. Hallelujer! Praise da Lort, Madea is back!
Scott “Movie Man” Menzel’s final rating for Boo! A Madea Halloween is a 8 out of 10.