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Cinema Dispatch: Barbershop: The Next Cut

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Barbershop: The Next Cut and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures

Directed by Malcolm D Lee

I tend not to review movies if I haven’t seen the original films first; even if the connection between them is tenuous at best.  Mostly it’s an excuse to keep my own sanity (*cough* Allegiant *cough*) but I think it’s fair to say that those who go see sequels without seeing the previous films are gonna be hard pressed to review it in the context of the series as well as in the context of itself as a singular film.  That said, I made an exception here; primarily because this is one of those years later sequels which means they’ll likely have a refresher of sorts at the beginning to catch everyone up to speed, and also because I thought the trailers looked pretty good with a solid cast and genuinely funny moments; That and the added bonus of seeing Nikki Minaj onscreen.  ANYWAY!  Does this manage to bring in a new audience while also pleasing the longtime fans of the series, or will this be a disaster borne from the cast and crew’s desire to just cash in on their previous success?  Let’s find out!!

The movie primarily follows the misadventures of Calvin (Ice Cube) who runs a joint barber shop/beauty shop where many of his friends work, including his wife Angie (Regina Hall).  Going to work every day with the people you love, shooting the shit, cutting hair; sounds like the perfect life, right?  Well it WOULD be if the shop wasn’t right smack dab in the middle of one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago!  Calvin has to worry about gangsters shooting guns outside the shop, customers shooting them INSIDE the shop, and even his own son Jalen (Michael Rainey Jr) get suckered and seduced into the thug life.  Can this little barber shop prove to be the catalyst for real change in the neighborhood once they decide to take direct action?  Will Calvin sell the shop so that he and his family can get out of the bad neighborhood while leaving all his friends twisting in the wind?  Is Cedric the Entertainer going to live up to his name for once!?

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“What all this?  Where the hell am I!?”     “Relax.  You’re in a good movie.”     “… Say what?”     “YOU’RE IN A GOOD MOVIE!!”     Okay, you’re saying words, but they just sound all jumbled together and don’t make any sense.”

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