Wednesday, October 4, 2023


April 25, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

While it was not screened in advance for critics, Madea’s Big Happy Family was viewed by a handful of them at their local multiplexes over the weekend. Their common complaint is that, aside from the Madea character (producer-director-writer-star Tyler Perry in a fat suit, a print dress and a wig), nearly all of the women in it are eminently unlikable. As Jim Slotek put it in the Toronto Sun: “For a guy who made a fortune wearing a dress, Perry gets accused of misogyny a lot. And Big Happy Family doesn’t help his case.” Wilson Morales at had a similar reaction: “His depiction of women,” he wrote, is that they are “helpless, spiteful, and uncaring. Madea’s Big Happy Family is a big mess.” Glenn Whipp in the Los Angeles Times reacted similarly: “Perry’s characters have always been broad,” he wrote, “but the women here take shrillness to a level that would make Snooki shrink like a violet.” In the New York Daily News, Elizabeth Weitzman remarked that in Perry’s movie, “all the villains are young women, and all the young women in this film — without exception — are monstrous.” In fact, she concluded, “it’s hard to know why Perry even bothered to write a story about these women, since he despises them all so much. When his movie’s biggest running gag is a hotline for men called ‘1-800-Choke-Dat-Ho,’ it’s time to start over.” Actually, Roger Moore in the Orlando Sentinel sees signs in the movie that Perry may be ready to abandon his Madea character. “If that’s the case,” he wrote, “at least Perry leaves it all on the court. Which is to say, he and his ensemble are funnier than they’ve been in ages.” Audiences would appear to agree; they gave Madea’s Big Happy Family an A rating in a CinemaScore vote over the weekend, according to Daily Variety.