Soul Men - Rotten Tomatoes

Soul Men (2008)



Critic Consensus: Soul Men features lively performances from Bernie Mac and Samuel L. Jackson and some hilarious moments, but ultimately suffers from an unoriginal script.

Movie Info

In 1965, Marcus Hooks (John Legend), Floyd Henderson (Bernie Mac), and Louis Hinds (Samuel L. Jackson) were just three kids singing doo-wop harmonies around a fire barrel when legendary record producer Willie Mitchell caught an earful of their infectious harmonizing. Two short years later, Marcus Hooks and the Real Deal had signed to Hi Records, and they quickly became one of the most popular soul acts in America. But success can't last forever, and it wasn't long before Hooks decided to strike … More

Rating: R (for pervasive language, and sexual content including nudity)
Genre: Musical & Performing Arts , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Matthew Stone , Robert Ramsey
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 10, 2009
Box Office: $12.0M


as Cleo Whitfield

as Danny Epstein

as Marcus Hooks

as Himself
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Soul Men

All Critics (102) | Top Critics (34)

Soul Men could have been so much more.

Full Review… | November 13, 2008
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Considering the canvas the story provides, and the richness of the tradition it taps into, the amount and quality of the music is pretty disappointing.

Full Review… | November 10, 2008
Top Critic

This one's only fair, but it has its low-down wiles and its moments.

Full Review… | November 10, 2008
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

It is not a perfect film but it is a nice, solid reminder of how great Bernie Mac was.

Full Review… | November 10, 2008
At the Movies
Top Critic

It really is bittersweet to watch Mac in one of his final performances. He makes the most of pretty average material here.

Full Review… | November 10, 2008
At the Movies
Top Critic

In the end, its lack of originality and extremely low sense of humor keep Soul Men down a lot further than it deserves. There's potential there, but it's never realized.

Full Review… | March 30, 2011

Audience Reviews for Soul Men

Funny, funny, funny. I nice tribute to serve as Bernie Macs last film. Highly enjoyable. My husband and I really got a kick out of this movie. It had some really fun songs, too.

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer


both a buddy film and a road film, this comedy has its moments, but all too often it seems to forget how to be witty, so relies on funny looks and MF's by Bernie Mac way too often.

So much of this film seems pasted together and you feel that, in spite of this being Bernie's last film, this was pretty much paint by the numbers, and just about everyone's hearts weren't in it.

Sloppy is a good way to describe the direction - flashbacks of "previous" scenes, that were actually on the cutting room floor parred with a "just keep the camera rolling and something magical will happen" feel, keep this film tethered to the ground, where it could have soared.

There are some nifty period soul tunes by Stanley Clark, and a nice premise, but oddly for "soul men" no soul.

I truly question how a film about a soul singing act, and with such talented musicians involved (the aforementioned Clark as well as Issak Hayes), can be lazy enough to suggest that in 3 different towns a back up band shows up from out of nowhere, instantly knowing all the dudes' material and performing flawlessly. Uh, don't think so Sparky. Using the rehearsing of various backup bands could have been mined for humor as well as giving the film a more authentic feel.

This film reminded me of The Blues Brothers, in the road trip aspect, and many a Lemon/Matheau comedy (Grumpy Old Men, Out To Sea, etc), only not done as well. What a waste of two very talented actors.

paul sandberg

Super Reviewer


Good plot/storyline, good duo, music, and a cameo from the late Isaac Hayes. Bad, bad script, empty. Expletives can only carry movie so far. Its weird how this was the last thing both Mac and Hayes worked with, soul is dangerous.

Lenny Muggsy

Super Reviewer

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