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"B.A.P.S."
(1997) (Halle Berry, Martin Landau) (PG-13)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Minor None Moderate None None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None Minor None Moderate
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Mild Minor None Minor Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: Two streetwise women help an ailing millionaire have a good end to his life.
PLOT:
Nisi (HALLE BERRY) and Mickey (NATALIE DESSELLE) are two streetwise women, who when not working at a Decatur, Georgia greasy spoon diner, dream of opening their own hair salon. When they hear about a casting call to appear in a music video, they pack their bags and head to L.A. Although they don't win the dancing roles, they're approached by a limo driver, Antonio (LUIGI AMODEO) who says they're the perfect people he's looking for in his video. He offers them ten thousand dollars and a chance to stay in a Beverly Hills mansion. When they get there, they meet Isaac (JONATHAN FRIED), the nephew of an ailing millionaire, Mr. Blakemore (MARTIN LANDAU). He wants Nisi to pose as the granddaughter of Blakemore's long lost love, and the two women decide to go along with deception so as to receive their money. But as they get to know and help Blakemore live his last days to the fullest, they find out, along with head butler, Manley (IAN RICHARDSON), that Isaac and Antonio have hatched a scheme to get the millionaire's money. As Blakemore affectionately calls them "B.A.P.S." (Black American Princesses), the women realize there's more to life than getting rich quick.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of any of the cast, they might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • HALLE BERRY and NATALIE DESSELLE play two streetwise women who first go along with the farce to make money, but then learn that there's more to life than money. Their appearance and speech patterns may be imitated by young girls who might want to have exaggerated hair or unbelievably long fingernails. Their dialect is that of the inner city slang.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 1 out of 10
    This is a horrible excuse of a movie. It lacks any imagination, plot, or acting style and Academy Award winner Martin Landau should be ashamed to have ever signed on to participate in this mess. Contrived and artificially sweet, the movie is so full of cliches and predictability, it should be a case study of how not to make a movie. We've liked other projects that director Robert Townsend's worked on, but he should file this one away and forget about it. Halle Berry should equally be ashamed, for in this movie she gets to play either the buffoon, or walk around as "eye candy" for the young males in the audience. Wearing skimpy bikinis or midriff-exposing clothes is something this charismatic actress should be beyond by now. Sure, this is supposed to be a "fairy tale" comedy, somewhere along the line of "Pretty Woman" where a poor street woman/women meets rich man and they teach each other things). It includes the obligatory clothes buying sequence where everyone tries on many clothes to a catch tune, but as that just shows, the plot's been done before we've been there, done that. The semblance of the plot that involves two scheming "bad" guys is lame and only appears when absolutely necessary to move the story along to the next contrived plot point. This is unimaginative, copycat film making at its best and we suggest that you pass it by. We give it a marginal 1 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    This movie gets its PG-13 rating from several uses of the "f" word that were completely unnecessary other than to get the higher rating. Beyond that, there's little to object in this film. The "bad" guys want to bilk the millionaire out of his money and try to use the women in their plan, but none of it's played out seriously at all. There are a few sexual comments, but nothing that's too bad, although Halle Berry is used as "eye candy" in several scenes including one where she shows up in a skimpy bikini and others where she's in very tight and/or short clothing. Violence is limited to two scenes where punches are thrown, but they're done so more for humor than malevolence. If you and/or your kids want to see this film, you should read through the scene listings to make sure how appropriate it is for you and/or them.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • People drink in a bar and two strangers offer to buy Nisi and Mickey drinks, but then don't have the money to do so. Moments later, the women's boyfriends do the same.
  • There's wine on the dinner table, but no one is seen drinking it.
  • People drink in a dance club.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Two strangers (and later the women's boyfriends) offer to buy Nisi and Mickey drinks but then don't or can't pay them.
  • A man calls Mickey, who's a large woman, "heifer."
  • Nisi and Mickey go along with the deception of Blakemore (acting like Nisi is his long lost love's granddaughter) so that they can get their money.
  • Both Antonio and Isaac scheme to rob Blakemore of his money and plan to use Nisi and Mickey to do so.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • None.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Idiots," and "Skeezers."
  • Some young girls may want to imitate the women's inner city slang, wild hairdos, or extremely long fingernails.
  • Nisi, Mickey and many other characters have gold front teeth.
  • Manley names a rap group, "Bitch Better Have My Money," that he's supposed to buy the CD of.
  • A music store clerk imitates a rap artist and wildly shakes and slaps his own butt.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 2 "f" words, 2 "s" words, 6 "ass" words, 4 damns, 3 hells, and 1 use of "Oh my God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Nisi points to a small classical statue of a nude man and points at the penis. Mickey then says, "He's got a little one."
  • As Antonio comes on to Mickey, she says that she's holding out until she's married.
  • Halle Berry is often used as "eye candy," and in many scenes she's in very tight, skimpy clothing or in one scene, a revealing bikini.
  • Mickey offers to make Blakemore a drink that her grandmother used to get her grandfather "up." Nisi then states that it really did "get him up" (ie. An erection).
  • SMOKING
  • A man smokes a cigar in one scene.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The true value of friendship vs. Money.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Nisi's boyfriend punches a guy who reneged on buying her a drink.
  • Antoine hits many over the head (heard but not seen). Nisi and Mickey then confront him (he's wearing a mask so they don't immediately recognize him). The two women then alternate punching him several times, and by the end of the scene he's rather bruised and battered.



  • Reviewed March 27, 1997

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