Off-topic movie review: Jumping the Broom

Jumping the Broom is a delightfully over-acted romantic comedy about two professionals in love, from vastly different family backgrounds, who navigate their way through those differences with the power of love to get married before one of them has to run off to China.

It’s about the power of love, really, and the powerful commitment of the female character to remain true to a promise she made to God about sex before marriage.

Of course, love (and a little prayer) saves the day and all ends well.

So it’s a little ironic that the song the producers used to play to introduce the movie over the opening credits is Bruno Mars’ “Marry You.” Have you heard the lyrics to this song?

It’s a beautiful night / We’re looking for something dumb to do / Hey baby, I think I wanna marry you

Is it the look in your eyes / or is it this dancing juice / who cares baby / I think I wanna marry you

The song later remarks that if they have second thoughts after their drunken nuptials (with a product placement of Petron tequila), that’s OK … the one night was fun.

It’s a little hard to take the movie’s underlying theme of the power of love serious when, from the outset, they’re making fun of it. It’s kind of like saying one thing while winking … you’re just kidding about it all.

And maybe that’s the point: the movie’s just one big wink job: “true” love and marriage don’t really matter. But with T.D. Jakes as one of the producers, I don’t think it was meant to be.

I think it was meant to be a feel-good comedy. Too bad it was ruined by Bruno.

But that may be a little off-topic.

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4 thoughts on “Off-topic movie review: Jumping the Broom

  1. Thank you for mentioning that insipid Mars tune. Why couldn’t the filmmakers select “Love Fell Down on Me”? They still could’ve presented a reprise of that song in the scenes where we now hear it playing.

    Also as puzzling as the choice of opening-credits song is the trivial treatment, in the movie poster (check it out, above), of such a historical artifact as the African American wedding broom. What’s up with that, Mr. Akil and Reverend Jakes?

    Jumping the Broom ends up a mélange of flat jokes (except for Mike Epps’ wisecracks), colorism and beautiful faces. (Laz Alonso’s character had opened his eyes to a face belonging to a woman without the safe prettiness of Paula Patton, he wouldn’t have said, “Breathe”; he would’ve passed out.)

    What could’ve been a credible romance or even a romantic farce was missed — no, sacrificed at the altar of abstinence. Only the soundtrack, except for “Marry You,” saves this Martha’s Vineyard tourism promo. One example of an authentic marriage of music and drama is when the divine Loretta Devine’s character is shown baking sweet potato pie (her son’s favorite, and his friends’, too), pausing at her son’s baby picture and childhood portrait as she thumbs through a family photo album, and caressing an heirloom wedding broom after retrieving it from a closet in her lonely apartment. This montage of poignant scenes is accompanied by Al Green’s emotive ballad “Simply Beautiful” and realistically depicts a protective mother’s mixed emotions as she prepares for her only child’s wedding to a woman she has never met because — we later learn — her doted-on son had avoided such an introduction.

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