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Tyler Perry's Madea's Big Happy Family | 2011 | PG-13 | - 4.4.4

A woman (Loretta Devine) with a terminal disease is having difficulty getting her grown children and their kids together to tell them that she's running out of time. Family members are fighting and refuse to be in the same room together, so her aunts (Tyler Perry and Cassi Davis) round up the children (Shad Moss, Shannon Kane and Natalie Desselle-Reid) with their families and order them to appear at a family dinner "or else." Also with Teyana Taylor, Lauren London, David Mann, Tamela Mann, Isaiah Mustafa, Rodney Perry, Philip Anthony-Rodriguez and Jill Scott. Directed by Tyler Perry. [1:46]

SEX/NUDITY 4 - After a man finds out that he is not a woman's father he tells her that he wants to be her man now, implying a sexual relationship; she makes a face and turns away. We hear that a 13-year-old girl had a baby as a result of incest at age 12. A woman points to her large breasts (she is fully clothed) and says, "I double-D dare you" several times when arguing with people.
 Three women wearing short shirts or short-shorts that reveal thighs and sometimes the bottom edge of buttocks with low-cut tops that reveal cleavage appear in several scenes. A woman wears a zip-up top unzipped to her waist to reveal significant cleavage, covered partially by numerous gold chains. Two elderly women seem to be braless under loose-fitting dresses and their breasts bounce and swing comically.
 Three men say women are crazy because they go through menopause. A man says he will start a business for men that want to escape their "baby-mamas" called 1-800-Choke-That-Ho, and repeats the phone number two dozen times as he laughs. An elderly woman asks a 30-something man if he is married (he replies no) and straight (he does not answer) and says she will pop him until he will never forget it (implying having sex). A married man says he has not had sex in a year and would get more love in prison (implying homosexual sex). An older woman tells a younger woman that 40-50 year old man have a midlife crisis that is hard to handle, while the wives are going through menopause, which is also difficult. On a TV show a woman, her adult daughter and a man argue about whether he is the daughter's father. Two men and a woman argue on a TV show about who is the father of her baby. Two women argue briefly about which of them is better in bed and more attractive.
 An 18-year-old man has a 9-month-old baby with one woman and dates another woman. An elderly woman hugs her son-in-law and pats him on the buttocks with both hands as the camera shows his back.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - When a fast food employee talks on the phone rather than take her order, a woman drives her car through the lobby to the counter, gets out of the car, throws sandwiches at the staff and customers, and shouts about how everyone in the community needs to start respecting one another, especially customers, or she will physically beat them. A woman slaps the faces of two elementary school boys while the she shouts at them after they call her "Old Lady" and sneer; we see this from behind the boys' heads in close up, and we then see their faces from the front moving left and right. A woman slaps a man in the face and knocks him down, telling him he has no sense. On a TV show, a woman jabs her finger into a man's shoulder repeatedly as her words and face are bleeped out during an argument, and takes a hammer out of her purse, threatening other people to stay away or she will pound them (no one is injured).
 A woman, sick with cancer, staggers down a flight of stairs, sits on the bottom step and calls for help to a friend that's residing with her; we then see the woman in a hospital bed. A woman breathes heavily and pants throughout the film and we hear that she has lung cancer and only 2-4 weeks to live. We see four people receiving chemotherapy with an IV line taped to their arms. A man is shown being pushed in a wheelchair to minor surgery for a colon polyp as he cries and shouts for people to pray for him (he is seen recovered later).
 Police officers arrest a man at his house while family members accuse him of selling drugs; he denies it as he is hauled away. A man is fired for being late to work; he and his boss argue and the boss tells him to leave.
 A man tells a woman that her mother is dead and the woman runs into a hospital room and screams as her siblings cry. After being slapped repeatedly, a woman asks her two elementary aged boys why their faces are red, but we do not see any redness and they do not answer.
 Throughout the film, most of the conversations occur in arguments: The arguments occur between parents and children, children and senior citizens in stores, friends, dating couples, fast food restaurant staff and customers and neighbors and many arguments are brief, while some are loud and prolonged, consisting of strings of name-calling and mild obscenities. A woman tells her children that she is dying. A woman tells friends that praying doesn't always heal sickness, but that's OK because she is going to God. A woman says about today's parents raising children, "They like to pray. I like to punch." A woman gives a speech at a wake about how family members are disrespectful to each other and several of them cry. A woman tells a younger woman to leave the house and not return. An 18-year-old boy tells his date he does not want to see her again because he is tired of her asking him to sell drugs and give her money. On a TV show, two women and a man argue about whether he is the father of one of the women. A man says that he is about to throw up thinking about an older woman's stretch marks. We hear that a man was arrested for lack of child support payments.


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LANGUAGE 4 - Indecipherable F-words are suggested on a TV show when a woman's face is completely pixelated and there are two dozen bleeps, 1 obscene hand gesture, 5 scatological references, 25 anatomical references, 73 mild obscenities, exclamations (shut up), name-calling (crazy, dumb, skank, ho/whore, ghetto, demon seeds, retard, broad, trash, silverback, mess, pumpkin, liar, cheat, fools, Chaka Zulu, boy, girl, wimp, albino, piece of meat, old lady, Big Old Man, black leprechaun, Old Whip-you-ass, Young Whip-you-ass, 33 stereotypical references to women, men, children, fathers, unwed mothers, drug dealers, black families, today's parents, the unemployed, reality shows, police officers, real estate salespeople, light-skinned blacks, Christians, black Baptist churches, 48 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - An elderly woman talks constantly about smoking marijuana as another woman tells her each time to stop smoking "weed," a woman exits a clinic restroom followed by a large cloud of smoke and someone we don't see says they smell weed, a woman opens a cigarette box from a side table and shows her family it is full of marijuana cigarettes as she chants "puff, puff, puff, puff" and puts the box back, a woman smokes a marijuana cigarette as her nephew says he smells weed, a woman asks another woman if she can buy a dime-bag from her (implying drugs), a young woman demands that her boyfriend sell drugs to give her money several times and he nearly gives in but finally refuses, and a man slips something we cannot see into the hand of another man leaning against a wall and a drug deal is implied, but is unclear. A man walks into a store and asks to purchase a 40-ounce bottle of beer and we see bottles and cans of beer in a store.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - African American community, single parenthood, family secrets, health problems and death, incest, poverty, drugs, honesty, responsibility, conflict resolution.

MESSAGE - Communities must acknowledge long-term social problems, seek help, and work together to improve conditions. To teach respect some children need to be slapped.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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