Daddy's Little Girls – DVD Review


Available at Amazon.com

Director:

Tyler Perry

Starring:

Gabrielle Union ………. Julia
Idris Elba ………. Monty
Louis Gossett Jr. ………. Willie
Tasha Smith ………. Jennifer
Tracee Ellis Ross ………. Cynthia
Malinda Williams ………. Maya
Gary Anthony Sturgis ………. Joseph
Terri J. Vaughn ………. Brenda
China Anne McClain ………. China
Lauryn Alisa McClain ………. Lauryn
Sierra Aylina McClain ………. Sierra

The Movie

After Tyler Perry’s first two movies on the big screen became surprise box-office successes, he decided to go in a completely different route. He decided to take himself out of his third movie, Daddy’s Little Girls, altogether. There is no Madea to be found in this movie. Instead, Perry lets some good actors do their jobs. Yet just like the previous two films, though, he proves once again to be one of the most polarizing directors out there today.

Daddy’s Little Girls centers on a mechanic named Monty (Idris Elba). He is a single father to three little girls. When Monty’s ex-wife (Tasha Smith) and drug dealer boyfriend (Gary Anthony Sturgis) try to gain custody of the three girls, Monty enlists the help of a successful but lonely attorney named Julia (Gabrielle Union). Along the way, the working relationship between the blue-collar dad and his uptown attorney grows into something more.

The story here is pretty basic and not that unique. This is a simple story of two people trying to overcome their different backgrounds to find love. In addition, a good father struggles to protect his children from abuse and neglect, and a community tries to rid itself from the criminals terrorizing their neighborhood. As soon as Monty and Julia meet on screen, you can write the ending from there. There are no surprises here. The focus seems to be more on the love story between Julia and Monty, when it really should have been on Monty fighting to save his kids. That is more of an unique story, since certain stereotypes tend to suggest that African-American fathers are never there for their kids. This movie flips things around and proves that there are good fathers out there.

Tyler Perry stepped out of his acting shoes in this movie and was solely the director. But that’s for good reason as Tyler hired some quality actors for this film. Idris Elba proved on HBO’s The Wire that is an excellent actor and one to look out for in the future. He solidifies that in his role here. Gabrielle Union is also good as well. It doesn’t hurt that she always seems to be in these kinds of roles, but she is good at them so their relationship actually works here. Of course, the way Julia falls in love with Monty so fast seems a little far-fetched but at least there is chemistry there. In addition, Louis Gossett Jr. and Tasha Smith play strong supporting roles.

The biggest negative that this movie has is also it’s biggest positive. That’s to say that it’s a typical Tyler Perry movie in that it has a positive message and one that everyone can learn from. That’s the best thing about Tyler Perry movies. They have an underlying “God is always there for you” message, but it’s just like the previous two movies in that respect. So basically you know what you are getting going into it. Some people may also not like the amount of violence of this movie, especially near the end. Violence is not the answer, but this movie is real and true to life. The drama, minus the love story, doesn’t seemed forced in way. That goes back to the fantastic acting from Idris Elba, though.

Say what you want about the story, but one thing is for sure: Tyler Perry is getting better at making movies. The absence of Madea is not to be missed, as she would been out of place in this real and raw story. The fact that Perry recognized that proves he is improving. The story is basic, but at least it’s cohesive and is not as over the top. The acting is excellent, especially the lead actors, but it’s too bad that there weren’t given much to work with here. As long as you know what you are getting yourself into and keep your expectations low, you won’t be disappointed.

The Video:

The video is given in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen color, which is enhanced for 16:9 TVs. The video is pretty good and comparable to other new release DVDs. Nothing too special, but it’s good enough for this kind of movie.

The Audio:

The audio included is available in English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, English Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround sound, or Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround sound. There are subtitles available in English and Spanish as well. No problems real problems here either. The music and dialogue comes out loud and clear.

The Extras:

Audio Commentary
This is with the director, writer, and producer of the film, Tyler Perry. Lots of information is given about making the movie and everything else you want to know about the movie.

“Atlanta Aquarium: Working Under Water” Featurette
This is a short featurette about Atlanta Aquarium used in one scene of the movie. It’s decent enough, but nothing special to seek out.

“Tyler’s Team: Cast and Characters” Featurette
This is a long featurette that really acts as the “making of” documentary for the movie. We get to know the cast and all of the characters in the film; along with seeing how the movie was made and all of the behind-the-scenes stuff. Tyler Perry talks about this in the audio commentary, but here is where you see all of it.

“Introducing the McClain Sisters” Featurette
This is a short featurette on the three McClain sisters. They are sisters in the movie and they are sisters away from the screen as well. They are cute, and they actually are pretty good actors. We hear comments from them about making the movie, and comments from other cast and crew members about their acting skills. It’s fairly interesting.

Extended Church Scene
Like every Tyler Perry movie, the church scenes are the most important as they provide a climax to the story and give the main good characters hope that things will work out thanks to God. This is the extended scene, where basically it’s just a long sermon from the preacher directed at the character of Monty, played by Idris Elba. It’s actually pretty powerful on its own, but if it would have been put in the movie it would have seemed to be forced down our throats. We got the point in the movie, but it is nice to see this scene in all its glory.

THE INSIDE PULSE

Despite what you may hear, this movie is more drama than comedy. But the comedy in this movie seems to flow better with the drama than the previous two Tyler Perry movies. If you want to see the character of Madea, then go rent Madia’s Family Reunion. If you want to see an improvement from Tyler Perry, and probably his best work so far, then rent this. I can only recommend buying this for hardcore Tyler Perry fans. But this movie is a good one to start out with you are new to Tyler Perry and want to see his dramatic side.

The DVD Lounge’s Ratings for Daddy’s Little Girls
CATEGORY
RATING
(OUT OF 10)
THE MOVIE

4.5
THE VIDEO

8
THE AUDIO

8
THE EXTRAS

6
REPLAY VALUE

5
OVERALL
5
(NOT AN AVERAGE)