Are We There Yet? (2005)
Lincoln gets Iced
Kiss my 330 cubic inches of V8 power, sucker! - Nick
I've heard "Are We There Yet?" described as being absolutely terrible and also hilarious. Interestingly those who described it as terrible were generally those who write movie reviews and watch a lot of movies where those who thought "Are We There Yet?" was hilarious were the general public looking for entertainment. Which was right? Well they both are because whilst "Are We There Yet?" is funny the actual set up of a man being harassed by two children in a "Home Alone" style manner is just wrong, he's a good guy so doesn't deserve this torment. As such "Are We There Yet?" really is a movie which isn't so much about the integrity of the story but the humour of two children terrorizing thir mum's would be boyfriend.
Nick Persons (Ice Cube) finds himself falling for the beautiful Suzanne Kingston (Nia Long - Boiler Room) but there is a problem, not only is she a divorcee but she has two kids and Nick doesn't like kids. The kids don't like Nick either, actually they don't like any man who tries to date their mum as they hope their dad will return and so make it their job to deter all suitors before they get any ideas. But when Suzanne has to go to Vancouver for work and the kid's dad lets her down Nick steps in and says he will drive her children up to Vancouver so she doesn't have to turn down work, leading to a nightmare road trip for Nick and the children.
So as already mentioned "Are We There Yet?" is both terrible and entertaining and the terrible comes from the storyline of Nick willing to drive Suzanne's two children to her in Vancouver because he really likes her. That isn't so bad but what is is that Nick is a good guy, the children are nice children yet they see Nick as the enemy because he wants to date their mum. So there is reasoning, the kids still hope their dad will return and see it as their job to fend of all suitors. But the simple thing is that whilst Nick may have a bit of attitude and a dislike of children he is a good guy and good guys don't deserve as much crap as he takes in this movie.
But you then get the flip side of this and you have all the "Home Alone" style humour of two nuisance children making his life a misery. In fact we see them deliver greater punishment earlier on to another suitor with a series of booby traps which border on the cruel. Now whilst a good guy getting his car wrecked by two children who outwit and torment him is wrong it is also funny. When Nick has to deal with tantrums, tears, spilt food and lost keys it is genuinely funny and whilst it is unbelievable, like that should be a concern, the gradual destruction of his brand new Lincoln Navigator is amusing.
Of course all of this is also very obvious as you can guess from the start that whilst Nick hates children by the end of "Are We There Yet?" he will have bonded with Suzanne's two. And of course when it comes to him and Suzanne things won't run smoothly even when he is trying to be the good guy and driving her kids 300 miles so they can be with her for the holidays. But for those who are just after some "Home Alone" style action it won't matter because it delivers plenty of that.
And that is really it because whilst Ice Cube does a nice job of having the patience of a saint and Aleisha Allen and Philip Bolden do a decent enough job of playing troublesome tykes "Are We There Yet?" is a movie about the slapstick accidents more than anything. Actually there is something and the whole talking nodding figurine that Nick has on his dashboard is just wrong, simply wrong and never once as funny as the writers thought it was.
What this all boils down to is that "Are We There Yet?" is bad from a storyline point of view because good guys don't deserve the torment dished out on them as Nick does. But then it is entertaining in a "Home Alone" style manner as we watch the two children trying to put Nick off of dating their mum.
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