Tyler Perry’s The Single Mom’s Club Blu-ray Review
If I remember correctly, the saying is “don’t judge a book by its cover.” I say this because when the boss sent me THE SINGLE MOM’S CLUB to review, I panicked! To be honest, I had never seen a “Tyler Perry” film before, but had seen plenty of clips, most of them revolving around the character of Medea. Since her name wasn’t anywhere in the title, I took a deep breath and pushed “play.” Mr. Perry, I owe you an apology.
The film revolves around the lives of five very different women: May (Nia Long), a reporter for the local paper with aspirations of writing a book; Jan (Wendi McClendon-Covey), a book editor; Hilary (Amy Smart), a stay at home mom; Esperanza (Zulay Huneo), another stay at home mom and Lytia (Cocoa Brown), struggling to make ends meet. After all five are summoned to the private school their children attend (their kids have broken a few rules recently) they learn they also have another thing in common: they’re single moms. All have ended up here differently (divorce, husband in prison, just plain choice) but realize they all have needs that are being neglected because of their devotion to their children. They decide to form a support group among themselves. The Single Mom’s Club.
Well written (by Perry) and performed, THE SINGLE MOM’S CLUB is an emotional roller coaster that takes you up and down in the lives of these various women. May must deal with a man who never shows up when he promises; Jan, who chose to be a single mom (she was artificially inseminated) must now deal with the questions she never expected from her daughter about who and where her father is; Hilary has just gone through a nasty divorce and has had to give up many things, including a housekeeper who really raised the kids for her; Esperanza must be wary of her ex-husband, a man with a Latin streak of jealousy who constantly harasses her while Lytia, who has two sons (and a husband) in prison, is over protective of the kids she still has at home. She struggles to get by, working at the local coffee shop, refusing to listen to her neighbor who encourages her to just get on welfare, where she’ll get more money for not doing anything. All of these problems present themselves, as well as possible solutions in the form of new men (among them Crews, Ryan Egold and Perry himself). However, this isn’t a fairy tale, where the men show up and things go right. It’s a very realistic portrayal of friendship and families that seldom show up on the big screen, usually relegated to the Lifetime Channel.
The cast is strong across the board, and director Perry gives each member a moment or two of their own to shine. I’ve liked Perry as an actor (the recent ALEX COX film, his work in the new STAR TREK franchise and look forward to him in GONE GIRL) and he comes across as genuine and likable here. Same with Crews. The female characters are equally impressive, with special kudos to Ms. Brown for maintaining the dignity of her character despite the challenges faced. Though I don’t think I’m ready to embrace anything with the word “Madea” in its title yet, I can now say that I’ve seen a “Tyler Perry” movie and can honestly say I enjoyed it.
Video: Presented in a 2:35.1 aspect ratio, the transfer is bright. Most scenes, even those filmed outside at night or in a darkened room, stand out on screen.
Audio: Presented in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, the film is clear and un-muddled. Even scenes where many characters talk at once, you don’t miss a word of dialogue.
The Single Moms Sisterhood (11:17): A standard featurette featuring the women in the film.
The Mens Club (6:28): The same as above, but with the men.
Trailers: A few trailers for some recent Tyler Perry productions, featuring…Medea!