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article imageReview: You don’t have to ‘Think Like a Man’ to know it’s funny Special

By Sarah Gopaul     Apr 20, 2012 in Entertainment
‘Think Like a Man’ is a long joke about the perceived hoops we set up and jump through to land the perfect mate and then make the relationship work.
In the world of dating, men and women are constantly trying to out think, out play and out last each other. There's a strategy to getting what you want from your person of interest – at least that's what everyone would like to believe. This contrived battle of the sexes is the premise of some great romantic comedies, though Think Like a Man is more comedic than romantic.
Meet the player (Romany Malco), the mama's boy (Terrence Jenkins), the dreamer (Michael Ealy), the non-committer (Jerry Ferrara), the happily married man (Gary Owen) and our narrator, the happier divorced guy (Kevin Hart). According to him, these are the men women have to choose from when wading through the dating pool. But actor/comedian Steve Harvey has written a book to help women get the relationship they want: Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man. His advice: "Don't change the player, change the game." Using the tips in his book, the women seeing these men begin to find the happiness they desire - until it all falls apart.
There is definitely humour in relationships, whether it's in a couple's interactions with each other or how they talk about their partner to friends. The witty script, endless jokes and charming cast combine for a lot of laughs, though sometimes it does appear to be trying too hard to be funny all the time - even if for the most part, it succeeds. The inclusion of a couple of white characters (one a main) in a primarily black cast also allows for some not so politically correct jokes and comments to emerge from both directions, all of which are friendly jabs rather than a source of offense.
The categories and strategies presented in Harvey's book are not Earth shattering. The men and women described are all stereotypes we've seen or heard about at some point. For the women, it's the 90-day rule girl (Meagan Good), the single mom (Regina Hall), the woman who acts like a man (Taraji P. Henson), the "put a ring on my finger" girl (Gabrielle Union), and the evil ex-wife (Wendy Williams). The three-time divorcee offers self-help advice, such as keep the cookie in the cookie jar and require him to achieve certain milestones. It's all recycled dating propaganda that makes great fodder for comedy because it's so ridiculous (the fact that it's a real best-selling book is a whole other discussion).
The cast, fortunately, has fantastic chemistry together. The guys are entirely believable as long-time friends and they have adequate chemistry with their significant others. Despite the four relationships to follow, Hart is generally the centre of the film. For him, almost every line is a punch line but he manages to be that consistently enthusiastic without being irritating.
Not to be taken seriously, this is a fun rom com disguised as a buddy movie.
Director: Tim Story
Starring: Kevin Hart, Jerry Ferrara and Michael Ealy
More about Think Like a Man, steve harvey, Tim Story, Michael Ealy, Jerry Ferrara
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