Monday, December 12, 2011

Movie of the Week – Coming to America

This week’s movie is Coming to America (1988).

The comedy is about the Prince of Zamunda whose wife and life have been predetermined for him. He decides to find out what the real world is like and travels to Queens to find a woman who loves him for him and not because he is a prince. The film is directed by John Landis (who was probably the greatest comedy director of the era: Animal House, The Blues Brothers, Trading Places, Spies Like Us, and Three Amigos – Coming to America is probably his last great film, though he is still directing). Composer Nile Rodgers (a member of the group Chic) provides a good score, but his music for Soul Glo is fantastic (and really funny). Landis also worked with cinematographers Sol Negrin and Woody Omens and production designer Richard Macdonald (who does great work) on the film. It stars Eddie Murphy (who also developed the story) and Arsenio Hall (each playing multiple characters). The supporting cast is great too with James Earl Jones, John Amos, Madge Sinclair, Shari Headley, Eriq La Salle, Frankie Faison, Louie Anderson, Samuel L. Jackson, Don Ameche, and Ralph Bellamy. Murphy is known for playing multiple characters in his movies – this was the first. Coming to America is one of the best comedies from the 1980s and Murphy’s career. It is a must-see for fans of Murphy. Check out the trailer.

Available on Blu-ray, DVD and Streaming

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