Best Man Holiday delivers laughs and tears

    When you go to see The Best Man Holiday this weekend, which is a must if you want to see these characters in the future, make sure to bring tissues and shades. You’ll need one or the other depending on how open you are with your feelings, to get through this comedy/tear-jerker.

    The sequel to the 1999 cult classic, The Best Man, is very well executed by writer, director and producer Malcolm D. Lee. During a Comcast NBC Universal screening at the historic Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C., last night, Malcolm told us that he always knew he wanted to revisit these characters. And when he finally wrote the sequel he worked in everything he envisioned leaving no room for regrets. “It’s pretty jam packed. There’s a lot going on,” he said.

    As people filed out of the screening, a few people said they were emotionally spent and wouldn’t suggest seeing the movie on an actual holiday. We say, go, but be prepared.

    The characters have grown into successful adults. Lance (Morris Chestnut) is a pro football player at the top of his game, Quentin (Terrence Howard) is a marketing mogul, Jordan (Nia Long) is a powerful network television exec and Shelby (Melissa De Sousa) is a cast member of a fictional “Real Housewives” series. Harper (Taye Diggs) is still writing books and expecting a child with his wife Robyn (Sanaa Lathan). And Julian (Harold Perrineau) is running a school with his stripper-turned-wife Candace (Regina Hall).

    The story picks up exactly where it left off on the dance floor of Lance and Mia’s wedding. There are plenty of scenes from the original film throughout. The cast delivers big laughs (thankfully, not just the ones we saw in the trailers). The ensemble cast also shows how much they’ve grown in their craft as their characters struggle with more adult issues such as marriage, career and kids, all while trying to maintain and repair their old friendships. There are several good performances here, with Monica Calhoun (Mia) leading the pack as she deals with the heaviest tribulation.

    While most characters remain relatable on many levels, Lance comes off like a superhero with Herculean physical strength, Ghandi-esque spirituality, Bill Gates intelligence and a super-sexy six pack to boot.

    The film ends with a perfect set up for a Best Man 3 and Malcolm D. Lee already has ideas for that movie simmering. “It all depends on whether or not the fans come out and support it. This is a business it’s art and it’s commerce. And if the fans support it, it’ll happen,” he said. “It won’t take 14 years either.”

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