Movie Reviews: Soul Plane




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     The first black owned airline makes its ‘first friendly skies’ voyage from Los Angeles to New York amidst chaos.
     Kevin Hart, Tom Arnold, Snoop Dogg, Method Man, Mo'Nique, Gary Anthony Williams
Bottom Line:

Samantha Ofole

Combine a vivacious comedian (Mo’Nique) with a charismatic rapper (Snoop Dogg) sprinkle in a few caricatures in a familiar setting and the result is Soul Plane, an outrageously, unoriginal flick riddled with gags but low on laughs.

Nashawn Wade (Kevin Hart) is an entrepreneur who uses his winnings from a lawsuit to start his own airliner aptly called NWA Airlines (Nashawn Wade Airlines) that caters to the ‘urban traveler.’ Its maiden voyage is from Los Angeles to New York onboard flight # 0-69 departing from Terminal X, which is filled with hip-hop stores, a waffle house, basketball courts and sexily clad flight attendants. The plane, a purple contraption, is complete with bouncing hydraulics, chrome-plated custom rims, a Jacuzzi, casino and a strip bar. Most of the movie takes place on the plane and of course everything that could possibly go wrong does. Soul Plane relies heavily on over clichéd gags and recycled racial stereotypes. There is the token white man a Mr. Hunkee (pronounced honkey) played by Tom Arnold who is returning with his family from a vacation at Cracker Land. Billy Hunkee is his jive-talking son who naturally enjoys rap music in its full regalia whilst Flame is the colorful gay airhostess played Gary Anthony Williams and John Witherspoon is the raucous and perverted blind guy. Add to that the foul-mouthed airport security personnel played by Mo’Nique and Loni Love, the West African co-pilot Gaeman (pronounced gay man) and finally the lone Arab who causes commotion when he climbs onboard the aircraft. The only cast members who make their roles remotely funny are Snoop Dogg who as the weed smoking ex-con Captain Mack is scared of heights and owes his cockpit experience to a flight stimulator course played in the correctional facility and Mo’Nique whose feisty attitude brings onboard a few crackles. There is a dance club on the upper deck, a first class section where the Cristal flows continuously and a low class cabin, which serves boxes of Popeye's Chicken – one piece per passenger and comes complete with coin-operated overhead lockers.

An extended music video Soul Plane fails to ignite any gut wrenching humor and its recycled gags are either too obscene or too disgusting. Expect some turbulence at the box office for this comedy has very few humorous moments especially for such for a great cast.



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