Coming To America: Special Collector’s Edition
DVD Reviews | Jun 20th, 2007
Starring Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Madge Sinclair, Shari Headley, John Amos
Written By: Barry W. Blaustein, David Sheffield
Directed By: John Landis
Buy on Amazon.com link
SEXUAL CHOCOLATE! Coming To America is the second release in the John Landis/Eddie Murphy re-releases. I’m not sure which one I like better, Trading Places or Coming to America. It doesn’t really matter since both movies are really funny and very memorable. If you like this movie, you’ll want to own this new edition DVD!
Coming To America is about young Prince named Akeem who is being forced to marry someone he’s not in love with. On 21st birthday and during his wedding ceremony, he backs out at the last minute and has a heart to heart with his father, the King of Zamunda. His father thinks Akeem wants to go soil his royal oats, but Akeem really wants to find his true love. So Akeem and his best friend Semmi travel to America, and pick..Queens, NY of all places. Not the most glamorous place to find a Queen that’s for sure. The two rich Zamundans pretend to be immigrant peasants so they can find someone who isn’t in it for their wealth. Akeem finds a girl named Lisa, who’s father owns a restaurant called McDowell’s. Akeem decides that they will work there and get to know her. Akeem falls in love with Lisa but she has a boyfriend, who’s a soul-glo hair model. Akeem plays it cool and wins her over, but what will happen when she finds out the truth? If you don’t know, well you’re an idiot.
I’ve seen this movie so many times, it starts to get played out eventually. But since it’s been awhile since seeing this movie uncensored, I forgot how funny it is. My first reaction is, why hasn’t Arsenio Hall done more movies after this? He was one of the funniest characters and did just as many characters as Eddie Murphy. The two of them had a lot of chemistry and worked well off each other. This movie was definitely the start of Eddie Murphy doing almost “every character in a movie” phase. This movie just had the right amount of it, unlike the rest of the movies where he rode that into the ground. My favorite character he did in this movie has to go to the singer of Sexual Chocolate. I don’t know why I find him so funny, but I just do. I think the opening stuff was okay but kind of boring. It’s funny to see how rich Akeem is and what he does on a daily basis. I sure would love to have some hot servants clean my royal penis every day that’s for sure. But I think once the duo get to Queens, that’s when things really take over. The moment they step out of the airport and into the streets of NY and the cabbie calls Akeem “a dumb fuck,” that’s just brilliant right there. There’s a lot of subtle, funny things in this movie like: Akeem singing in the streets and being told to shut the fuck up, McDowell blatantly ripping off McDonald’s, the Soul-Glo song & video always makes me laugh, and when Semmi gets punished by being sent to the Waldorf-Astoria and being bath thoroughly and how he reacts to it. I think the funniest cameo in the movie isn’t from Samuel L. Jackson, but from Don Ameche and Ralph Bellamy as Mortimer and Randolph Duke from Trading Places. Akeem gives them money since they are homeless now and they say they are “back.” I’m sure I wasn’t the only that thought there might be some sort of sequel for Trading Places after seeing that. But perhaps if those two actors weren’t that old there might have been.
Just like the Trading Places DVD, the movie looks a lot better on your TV set; plus there are a few bonus features for you to check out. There’s a nice featurette featuring John Landis, and other people associated with the movie. They talk about the Cinderella story and how Eddie Murphy came up with the story and wrote the first twenty pages of the screenplay. Other featurettes include stuff on the costumes, Rick Baker’s makeup job on Eddie Murphy, Nile Rodger’s music and old footage of Hall & Murphy talking about the movie and being funny like always. Decent stuff, not too bad.
Coming to America is still very funny to this day. I would have cut out all those wedding stuff in the movie, since most of us fast forward that crap anyway. The rest of the film is great and quite hilarious. I’m not sure it’s Eddie Murphy’s best performance but it’s certainly up there as the funniest.
Prince-ipal Photography: The Coming Together of America
Fit For Akeem: The Costumes of Coming To America
Character Building: The Many Faces of Rick Baker
Composing America: The Musical Talents of Nile Rodgers
A Vintage Sit-Down with Eddie and Arsenio
Theatrical Trailer HD
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 CC
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital Stereo CC
FRENCH: Dolby Digital Stereo
Widescreen 1.85:1 Color (Anamorphic)
English, Spanish, Portuguese
Favorite Scenes: Akeem Singing outside, Semmi being punished to the Waldorf-Astoria, The Dukes, Soul-Glo commercial, Sexual Chocolate performance, the barbershop scenes
Running Time: 116 minutes