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Overall Rating
4.07

Awesome: 7.14%
Worth A Look92.86%
Average: 0%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 0%

2 reviews, 2 user ratings


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Dysfunktional Family
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by Brian McKay

"Could use a little more Funk, and a little less Family, but I can't Dis it."
4 stars

Hey America, you wanna hear the word "Nigga" used about 487 times in the space of an hour and a half? I've got just the movie for you! I thought Dave Chapelle said "Nigga" a lot (No, I'm not going to use the expression "The N-word" - I don't play that politically correct bullshit), but Griffin practically uses it in lieu of punctuation! Thankfully, there's a lot more to his act than the copious torrent of "Niggas".

Of course, if you don't think Eddie Griffin is funny to begin with, then Dysfunktional Family will probably be as painful for you to sit through for you as Larry the Cable Guy's hour and a half Comedy Central special was for me (that dumbass redneck makes Jeff Foxworthy look like Dennis Miller). But for those of us who found Undercover Brother an amusing good time, and recognize that Griffin was the saving grace of Double Take and Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, should find plenty to laugh at here.

Rather than just give us 90 minutes of straight live performance, Dysfunktional Family opts for the more innovative route of tying in interviews of Griffin's family with his stand-up. Prominently featured are his Uncle Curtis, who makes and stars in his own porn movies, another uncle who is a former pimp and addict, but has since gone on the straight and narrow, and his sweet, loving mama - who, as Griffin puts it, "Beat my ass out of going to the penitentiary".

Sometimes the merging of family interviews with stand up works. One example is when Griffin tells the story of how his mama was so mad at him one time that she tried to run him over with a car. The interwoven segments of the tale, between Griffin up on stage telling the story, and his mom doing the same at a family reunion (complete with overdubbed sound effects) are hilarious. Likewise, other tales told at family outings, which are later referred back to during the act, are often quite funny (especially when the parties involved are cringing in the front row).

But while Eddie has an interesting family, with many colorful tales to tell, the family interview segments tend to break up the flow of the comedy - especially during a somewhat draggy middle section. Thankfully towards the end, the family segments grow less frequent as Griffin wraps up most of the third act from on-stage. However, if you couldn't get enough of either Eddie's family, or his material, then you will find an abundance of deleted scenes in the DVD's special features section.

DYSFUNKTIONAL FAMILY, while essentially borrowing from the ORIGINAL KINGS OF COMEDY template, is a film that works off of the charm and likability of its star more than anything else. Even when some of his material has a "been there, heard that" sense to it, Griffin's outbursts of charisma help elevate the overall presentation. Plus, he dated super-hot Japanese Playboy Playmate Aiko Tanaka - I gotta give a brother extra props for that!

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=7453&reviewer=258
originally posted: 05/25/04 06:05:28
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

5/06/07 AJ Muller Eddie is one funny motherfucker; just a great standup/documentary mix. 4 stars
11/30/06 Petra Super 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  04-Apr-2003 (R)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A


Directed by
  George Gallo

Written by
  Eddie Griffin

Cast
  Eddie Griffin
  Uncle Buckey
  Uncle Curtis



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