Death at a Funeral (8/10)
by Tony Medley
Run Time: 90 minutes
OK for children.
The father of Chris Rock
and Martin Lawrence has died and lots of people are coming around for
his funeral. What happens is inconceivable and side-splitting funny.
Even though I had laughed
throughout director Frank Oz’s British original in 2007, I was still
laughing throughout this hilarious remake. Americans generally don’t do
farce as well as the English and French, but director Neil LaBute gets
top performances from this cast, headed by James Marsden, Chris Rock,
Tracy Morgan, Martin Lawrence, Ron Glass, Keith David, and Peter
Dinklage reprising his role from the original.
I have to admit I entered
the theater with a negative outlook. I liked the original a lot and I’m
not fond of remakes. I’m asking myself, “why are they remaking a
wonderful movie so soon?” On top of that, Chris Rock, who is an
uproariously funny standup, has never been in a movie I’ve seen that has
been anything but rotten.
So when I say that this
movie was funny and enjoyable, you can take it to the bank. Rock is very
good, but so is his entire supporting cast, even Tracy Morgan, who stunk
out the place in “Cop Out.” Marsden tops everybody as the guy who has
mistakenly taken some uppers and is out of his head.
Dinklage was pretty funny
in the original, but he is really funny here. Apparently practice makes
perfect. It was also good to see Ron Glass, whom I so admired in “Barney
Miller” three decades ago (can it be that long?), still has it.