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I was a bit too young to remember the last Tyler Perry movie I saw, and was never exposed to any of his actual plays. Thus, I held neutral expectations for "Why Did I Get Married Too," though I heard that its predecessor was quite good. I ALMOST left the theater taken aback at Perry's exceptional directing and understanding of human emotions. Unfortunately, that was all but squashed by one of the worst endings I've seen in a long time.
The plot is quite straightforward. Terry (Tyler Perry) and Diane (Sharon Leal) embark on their yearly couples retreat (sounds familiar?) with their friends, all of whom are also married. Marcus (Michael Jai White) and Angela (Tasha Smith) are constantly at odds with each other for any reason they (as in mostly Angela) can fathom, Troy (Lamman Rucker) and Sheila (Jill Scott) are battling the all-too-real consequences of unemployment, while Patricia (Janet Jackson) and Gavin (Mailk Yoba) serve as the model relationship for the group. The retreat is brought back to a harsh reality when Sheila's former husband, Mike (Richard Jones), unknowingly books time with the group's beach house for the weekend. His interruption, unbeknownst to the couples, tests their relationships as their own flaws slowly unravel and manifest themselves.
Perry's playwriting influences are made apparent right from the beginning, as each character behaves and builds in a play-like manner. This works strongly in his favor, as each character is developed well enough to bring significant amounts of powerful tension and drama later into the film. Perry also fiddles with the emotions of his audience like a puppet master, tossing them from angst to anger to happiness with incredible ease and lightning-fast timing. Every actor was stretched to their emotional limits in this film; I found Jackson's performance shockingly spectacular here and her conflict with Yoba to be one of the most intense partnerships I've seen in a while. In short, I felt like I was yanked from my seat and strapped onto the front of an emotional roller-coaster right from the beginning.
Unfortunately, that trains flew off the tracks into a horrible crash landing in the film's final ten minutes. While the ending was somewhat unexpected, it was certainly not the ending I *wanted* to expect. It was as if Perry waited an hour and 50 minutes to cram all of the clichéd, fantasy, happy-ending-feel-goodness Hollywood delivers in spades. The last two minutes were especially insulting. It was so appalling for me, in fact, that it made me spend the two hour train ride home realizing many of the other plot holes and unanswered questions Perry made irrelevant for me beforehand. I'm just going to assume that Perry didn't write the ending; it makes more sense.
All in all, the film is exceptionally well-made, incredibly moving and does not rely on its previous installment for the audience to wholly appreciate. Even despite its questionably poor ending, I highly recommend it.
Release Date: 2 April 2010 (USA)
Runtime: USA:121 min
Sound Mix: Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS