Madea’s Family Reunion

Rated 2.0

Writer-director-producer-star Tyler Perry’s follow-up to last year’s surprise hit Diary of a Mad Black Woman utilizes the same motley (albeit crowd-pleasing) formula: (1) vanity-production comedy with Perry playing three parts (including a Flip Wilson-style drag turn as Madea) and hogging every single gag line to himself; (2) melodramatic soap opera about domestic violence, with Rochelle Aytes being knocked around by fiance Blair Underwood; and (3) heaping dose of family-values sermonizing, with Cicely Tyson and (of all people) poet Maya Angelou delivering earnest exhortations to love and cherish one another. Oddly enough, the movie has little to do with a family reunion; that minor episode seems almost an afterthought as Perry lurches uncertainly from one subplot to the next.