Projections - Movie Reviews

The Fighting Temptations

The Fighting Temptations

Cuba Gooding Jr. has a talent for bringing such exuberance to this role that it rubs off on everyone watching.

He plays Darrin, a N.Y. City advertising man who's on the fast track for a big promotion, when he un-expectantly gets fired for embellishing his resume.

One step in front of his creditors, he takes a trip to his small home town in Georgia for the reading of his aunt's will.  He'll receive $150,000, if he directs and gets her church choir ready for the Big Gospel Explosion.

When he shows up at church ready to take on his duties, he discovers only a few singers who can't carry a tune and who bicker constantly; even the organist is off key.

Darrin holds an open call for auditioning new choir members via radio spots announced by funny-man Steve Harvey as the local D.J.  Even a few inmates show up at the try outs, which look like an episode of "American Idol."

Whenever groups of people get together, count on someone attempting to be boss, so it is with this church choir.  Paulina (Latanya Richardson), the Reverend's bitter and holier-than-thow sister, is Darrin's biggest obstacle.

Paulina nixes everything, including the addition of the best voice in town, owned by Lilly (Beyonce Knowles), a nightclub singer, who Darrin is also sweet on.

Besides Gooding and Knowles (who is like a breath of fresh air) the cast is full of talented people; The O'Jays singing group, Rue McClanahan and the wonderful Melba Moore, to name a few.

Whether or not the choir wins the contest isn't important, it's the fun which happens on the journey.  What matters is the great gospel music, the terrifically drawn characters and the pure joy that the actors give to their performances.  Believe me, that joy is contagious as demonstrated by the full theater that enjoyed the film.  They laughed, clapped and even sang along - to me that adds up to an enjoyable evening of entertainment.

 
Frank
Chris
Tony
Jim
Howard
Jennifer
Kathleen
Avg.
The Fighting Temptations
B
B+
B
B-
 
B-
B+
B