Thursday, August 19, 2010

MOVIE REVIEW: Lottery Ticket

It will make you chucke for a minute and forget your problems

Yesterday, I went to an advance screening of the movie "Lottery Ticket" at the MJR 20 in Sterling Heights, MI.  I was really prepared not to like this movie since the movie trailer looked a little - silly.  And it was a very silly movie, but I am getting ahead of myself.

"Lottery Ticket" stars an all grown up Bow Wow as Kevin, a recent high school grad who lives in the hood and works at Foot Locker, but has dreams of designing kicks of his own someday instead of selling them. He is a very talented shoe designer, but sees no way out of the life that he now leads. His two best friends are Benny (played by Brandon T. Jackson from Detroit) and Stacie (played by Nautui Naughton). Stacie is on her way to college on a scholarship, but Kevin and Benny are just hanging around the projects, hoping that something good will happen to them.

Kevin lives with his grandmother (played by Lorrette Devine). Grandma likes to play the lottery and she has had a dream that Jesus came to her riding in a bus and gave her the numbers to win the lottery, which is now totalling over $300 million dollars.  Everyone in the neighborhood is playing the lottery and dreaming of what they would do with the money, except for Kevin who believes the lottery is just a way to give poor people false dreams.

One day, Kevin has a bad run in with a very violent neighborhood thug, which causes Kevin to be fired from his job. As Kevin is contemplating what other bad things will happen to him, he gets a fortune cookie that will changes his life.  The cookie contains lucky numbers and Kevin decides to play the numbers despite his dislike for the lottery - and he wins! The rest of the movie is about how money changes not only Kevin, but also everyone else around him as everyone tries to get their fair share of the lottery pie.

This movie is overall very silly. There are lots of jokes and slapstick comedy. It reminded me a lot of the 1980's TV show "What's Happening" - if you are old enough to remember. There is also a fair share of foul language and a few suggestive scenes which helped to earn the movie a PG-13 rating. But overall, this silly movie made me laugh out loud more than a few times. The funniest scene was with comedian Mike Epps, who plays Kevin's pastor, Rev. Taylor. The good reverend lets the entire congregation know of God's "money dreams" for him with a crazy slide show during the morning worship. He also shows that even in the House of God, a minister needs to pack some heat and have it cocked.

I think Bow Wow should be looking for better roles than the one he has in this movie. He is really growing into a good actor and I hope that he uses this movie experience to gain some meatier roles.  This movie is also a waste of time for Lorreta Devine, who is really a great actress and singer who has had some wonderful movie and television roles over the last twenty years.

Don't go to "Lottery Ticket" expecting the best comedy of the summer. But if you are looking for something light hearted that will make you chuckle for a minute and forget your problems, then 'Lottery Ticket" is your kind of movie.

Lottery Ticket opens in theaters on Friday, August 20, 2010.

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