Are We Done Yet?
Directed by Steve Carr. Starring Ice Cube, Nia Long, John C. McGinley, Aleisha Allen, Philip Bolden. (2007, PG, 92 min.)
REVIEWED By Marjorie Baumgarten, Fri., April 13, 2007
Who could have ever foreseen that Ice Cube – the rapper who announced his music career with Straight Outta Compton and his subsequent acting career with Boyz N the Hood – would now be making movies about family life in the suburbs and the pressures of dealing with less-than-upfront real estate agents, the idiosyncrasies of housing contractors, the agonies of remodeling, and the fight-or-flight threats posed by bats and raccoons? Although an unlikely career path, it has served Cube well, and in addition to morphing into a decent actor and popular star of family movies, he has also moved into the producer’s chair for these projects. So, to answer the presumably rhetorical question posed by this movie’s title, I am sad to report that we are hardly done yet. Not by a country mile. In this follow-up to 2005’s Are We There Yet?, Cube resumes the role of Nick Persons. He has now married Suzanne (Long), the object of his affections in the previous movie, and has become a loving and dutiful parent to her annoying children (Allen and Bolden). He’s sold his Portland, Ore., sports-memorabilia store and has vague plans for starting up a new sports magazine (and in a movie that has only a passing relationship with reality, the plans for this publishing venture are the most absurd aspect of all). McGinley wears many hats (and he literally changes hats) as the local real estate agent, contractor, building inspector, and midwife (handy because Suzanne is pregnant). In a ferretlike frenzy, he chews scenery faster than termites can chew the Persons’ woodwork. Nothing is very funny in this movie, and everything is predictable – except for the Washington State University T-shirts Cube wears in nearly every scene. Are we done yet? Not when the move to the countryside is accompanied by the overpowering aroma of franchise.