Guess Who

Guess Who
Cast: Bernie Mac, Ashton Kutcher, Ron Reaco Lee, Andy Morrow, Zoë Saldana, Sherri Shepherd, Kellee Stewart, Amanda Tosch, Judith Scott
Director: Kevin Rodney Sullivan
Genre: Comedy/Romance
Rated: M sexual references
Running Time: 105 Minutes

Some In-Laws Were Made To Be Broken

Percy Jones (Bernie Mac) takes great pride in the knowledge that he is always right, especially when it comes to the welfare of his family. When his daughter Theresa (Zoë Saldana) brings her new boyfriend Simon Green (Ashton Kutcher) home to meet Percy and his wife Marilyn (Judith Scott) he is unaware that Simon has already proposed to Theresa and plans to announce the engagement at Percy and Marilyn's 25th Wedding Anniversary party.

As far as Percy's concerned, no man will ever be good enough for his baby girl and the long line of struggling-artist types that Theresa has dated so far only served to bolster his conviction. Percy is more than aghast and more than a little indignant when his daughter presents her decidedly Caucasian boyfriend.

My Verdict:
Percy Jones is a typical loving protective father to a daughter including the part when the daughter -in this case, Theresa -brings home her boyfriend, Simon. The problem is exacerbated here because Percy is black and Simon is white, which creates problems for Percy, as his vision of Theresa's ideal partner didn't include him being white. So when Simon enters the Jones house, the family dynamics are challenged as each player throws their values into the arena to try and win their respective argument in this debate over right or wrong.

Think back to 1967 and the marvellously fresh and innovative 'Guess Who's Coming To Dinner', starring legends Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, and the idea of an inter-racial marriage/relationship was breaking new ground. Fast-forward to 2005 and this updated version is no longer a fresh idea and therein lies much of the problem with 'Guess Who'. This is well-worn ground that doesn't have anything new to offer but instead tries to rely on the comedic efforts of Bernie Mac and the boyish good looks and charm of Ashton Kutcher as they are pitted against one another in this overly long attempt to let love prevail.

Bernie Mac is actually ok in 'Guess Who' and doesn't overdo the obnoxious over-protective father role too much, but a poor script hampers him, although him sleeping with Kutcher in the basement was a little over-the-top. Ashton Kutcher manages to spend most of his screen time with a boyish grin and not quite enough guts to grab the bull by the horns and stand his ground about his relationship with Theresa thereby spoiling what could have been a potentially decent role for him.

Unfortunately, it's only about five minutes into the movie and it's obvious where the movie is going and what the conclusion will be. Along the way there are a few moments when it's ok to raise a smile, but they are too far and too few between.

Rating : D+

Christina Bruce