This week at the movies, we’ve got spirited scoundrels (Fired Up!, starring Nicholas D’Agosto and Eric Christian Olsen) and septuagenarian scofflaws (Madea Goes to Jail, starring Tyler Perry and Derek Luke). What do the critics have to say?
If you’re going to make a raunchy cheerleading comedy, you’re going to need plenty of energy and some good jokes. Unfortunately, critics say Fired Up! is short on laughs and pep.The film stars Nicholas D’Agosto and Eric Christian Olsen as a pair of high school football stars that decide to join the painfully inept cheerleading squad as a ploy to meet girls. Naturally, the lads learn a thing or two about love and competitiveness in the process. The pundits say Fired Up! does little with a limited premise, delivering a few chuckles but ultimately coming across as alternately shopworn and mean-spirited.
There are two ways of looking at the evolution of Tyler Perry’s career: either mainstream critics are slowly coming around to his brand of comedic melodrama and spiritual uplift, or he’s getting better at his craft. Regardless of the answer, we’ll have to wait for the pundits’ evaluations of Madea Goes to Jail, since it wasn’t screened prior to release. Madea stars Perry as the irrepressible (and slammer-bound) matriarch, whose no-nonsense candor serves to inspire her damaged fellow inmates. Kids, ask your parole officer for help in guessing that Tomatometer!
Also opening this week in limited release: