Kevin Hart Michael Ealy Joy Bryant Paula Patton
ABOUT LAST NIGHT
The first version of About Last Night ran in 1986, and depicted male-female relationships, highlighting the differences in perspectives between the sexes, and the tendency for friends of a couple to try to influence them. Both films are based on a David Mamet play, and Tim Kazurinsky and Denise DeClue were part of both writing teams. Many of the plot twists are similar in both versions; however, the later version has African-American lead actors and a different quality of humor. The fast-talking ribald Kevin Hart gives much of the film its character, and the audience I was with thoroughly enjoyed him and his jokes.
In this current version, one couple, Bernie (Kevin Hart) and Joan (Regina Hall), is loud and boisterous, alternately fighting, insulting one another, and smooching without caring who is around. Danny (Michael Ealy) and Debbie (Joy Bryant) are just the opposite—tentative with one another and extremely private. Theirs is a more normal relationship, progressing slowly, and with a fair amount of ambivalence on his part for good reason. Both are thoughtful and make attempts to work through problems together, so are much more interesting, at least to me.
The course of the plot is predictable, and it is only the details that are supposed to be entertaining. Mostly, the characters party and drink a lot, although there are a few scenes that take place at work, and Danny clearly has problems at his until he switches jobs. He is working through a romantic break-up, so it’s understandable he is entering into another one with his guard up. He and Debbie, who is Joan’s roommate, receive a lot of advice from Bernie and Joan, which is funny in itself, given the state of their own relationship—or should I say states?
If you like Kevin Hart’s brand of humor, with lots of f--- and s--- words, you will like this film. Otherwise, you should choose another.
Grade: C- By: Donna R. Copeland