Published Feb 01, 2004Barbershop 2 features the same cast as its predecessor (Eve, Sean Patrick Thomas, Troy Garity, et al.), the same barely decipherable ramblings from Cedric the Entertainer, and the same beloved neighbourhood barbershop under siege. Director Kevin Rodney Sullivan (How Stella Got Her Groove Back) picks up right where Tim Story left off in this sequel to 2002's moderately rated Barbershop.
This time around it's not the barbershop's owner, Calvin Palmer (Ice Cube), that's putting it in jeopardy; it's the big bad corporate superstores and your standard money-grubbing politicians. When a small business owner in Calvin's south Chicago neighbourhood sells his spot on the street for big bucks, rival haircutting chain Nappy Cuts moves in. Nappy Cuts offers everything a patron can dream of: state-of-the-art equipment, luxury and basketball hoops. Calvin rushes to implement some changes to his store in an attempt to keep up with the competition, but in the end it's up to the community to decide which barbershop they want in their neighbourhood.
With a "special appearance by" Queen Latifah (although how can you specially appear in a movie?) and Sullivan's few snazzy camera angles, with a down-played and clichéd climax, this follow-up is destined to follow its predecessor's footsteps right into moderate ratings. But then again, it's not the been-there-done-that storyline that we came for; it's all the talk in-between. What gives this film some depth is its sense of community; the premise that belonging to a place where people meet, where there's history and ethics and spirit, is something worthwhile.
Barbershop 2 is first and foremost about shooting the shit, which, aside from the actual act of cutting hair, is the most important function of a barbershop anyway. (MGM)