Coming to America Reviews
Murphy is great as Akeem, though he seems a bit mroe subdued in the lead. Thankfully, he plays multiple characters, and this give him the chance to really let loose when he takes on those other roles. He's famolus for it now, but this is the first time he did this routine. Arsenio Hall gets in on the fun too, and the best side character each plays would have to be the Jewish man at the barber shop for Eddie (the makeup job is superb and very convincing), and the crazy lady at the bar for Hall.
Too bad those guys didn't work together all the time, or weren't able to stay in their prime forever, because they have grrat chemistry together, and this is when they were at some of their best. We also get appearances from James Earl Jones (who gets to be atypical and silly), as well as a stand out, but all too brief cameo from Samuel L. Jackson (in his second ever film role) as a bum who tries to hold up a fast food joint. It's a brilliant and extremely memorable scene.
The film is funny throughout, but it feels like the best stuff is few and far between. Also, the film feels a little long and draggy at times, as if the great director John Landis was just very unfocused and unsure of how to use all of the great talent at hand to its fullest.
All in all though, this is some good stuff, though perhaps a bit overrated. It's funny, yeah, but underwhelming. It's still worth a look though.
That fantastic joke by the Jewish gentleman in the barbers, fantastic.
King Jaffe Joffer: And who are you?
Prince Akeem: I am a man who has never tied his own shoes.
King Jaffe Joffer: Wrong. You are a PRINCE who has never tied his own shoes. I tied my own shoes once. It is an overrated experience.
This is one of the movies that show off everything that makes up the talent of Eddie Murphy. He takes on multiple roles, plays a fun character himself, and has a good supporting cast to bounce off of.
Murphy stars, in his main role, as Akeem, Prince of Zamunda. He has become bored of royal life in Africa, and does not desire to have a bride chosen for him with no sense of her own. He decides to travel to America to seek a bride of his own choice, who will like him for him. Coming with him is his servant Semmi, played by an equally good Arsenio Hall.
Murphy and Hall both go under different makeup sessions to play many of the other characters popping up in the movie, including an entire barbershop, which features an elderly, white, Jewish man.
Saul: A man has the right to change his name to vatever he vants to change it to. And if a man vants to be called Muhammad Ali, godammit this is a free country, you should respect his vishes, and call the man Muhammad Ali!
Morris: His mamma call him Clay, imma call him Clay.
At the core of this story, there is a good romantic comedy that is sweet to its characters, which makes it a good film as a whole.
Prince Akeem: Is it just me, or does every woman in New York have a severe emotional problem?
It also helps that the supporting cast has James Earl Jones as King of Zamunda, and small cameos from Louis Anderson and Sam Jackson.
Much of the comedy of course comes from the fish out of water aspect, as Murphy and Hall must learn the ways of America, and coast through New York in a blissful, naive way.
Very funny, with good multiple cast work from Murphy and Hall.
Prince Akeem: Fascinating. Semmi, look at this. America is great indeed. Imagine a country so free, you can throw out broken glass on the streets.