Running Time: 104 minutes
US Certificate: PG-13 UK Certificate: 12a
Country: United States
What is it with Hollywood these days and hairdressers? In the last few years weve had Barbershop, Barbershop 2, Noras Hair Salon, Hair Show and now arriving with all the welcome originality of one of those obnoxious fashion mullets sported by footballers and needle-brained wide-boys its time for Beauty Shop. When, oh when, will this knackered premise be given the snip?
This one is a vague add-on to Ice Cubes Barbershop franchise, starring Queen Latifah as the wobble-bottomed Gina character she played briefly in Barbershop 2. Since last we saw her, shes moved from Chicago to Atlanta in order to help her daughter (Paige Hurd) advance a fledging classical music career, and when the film kicks-off shes working at a pretentious salon for camp European scissorsmith Jorge (Kevin Bacon, proving himself to be a good sport by taking on what is basically a one-joke role). Its not long, though, before shes walking out on the slimy Jorge and setting up a place of her own, attracting some predictably loud-mouthed staff and customers along the way.
Though Latifahs likable enthusiasm in front of the camera is always infectious to a certain degree, shes picked a dud this time round and I cant help but feel that shes reached the stage of her acting career where she should be looking to try something a little different. Here, her character is uninteresting, shes shoe-horned into an out-of-nowhere romance with upstairs electrician Joe (Djimon Hounsou), and at times she even looks a little embarrassed by a screenplay which tries to pass off outright racism as good humour. The laughs, as you might have guessed, are few and far between.
It's Got: Kevin Bacon proving yet again that theres no mask he cannot wear. Hes a genius. Bacon. Is. The. Man.
It Needs: Coffee while you wait, madam?
Not even Queen Latifahs ever-bubbly presence can prevent this from turning into one seriously bad hair day.