Y’all know what time it is: The Best Man Holiday is in movie theaters today. Raise your hand if you’re going to get you some Morris Chestnut tah-night! *Insert image of Denene gently placing down her chocolate martini and waving both hands in the air like the true Morris Chestnut stan she is.*
Now is the perfect time, I guess, to share my confession: I watch The Best Man, like, a lot. At least once every few weeks on DVD, and more if a network happens to be running it or I’m scrolling through the Black movies section on On-Demand and it’s miraculously in the line-up. I got issues. Morris Chestnut, Nia Long, Sanaa Lathan, Taye Diggs, Harold Perrineau, Melissa De Sousa, Regina Hall, Monica E. Calhoun and Terrance Howard soothe them. Word to Harper.
So you can only imagine how hyped I’ve been since film director Malcolm Lee, the genius behind The Best Man, announced the sequel—The Best Man Holiday. I mean, we’ve only been waiting a whopping 15 years to see what ever happened to our homies, Malcolm. Putting your money on the success of a follow-up to the smart, funny, heartfelt flick about college friends coming together for a weekend of reminiscing, scandal, sex and debauchery was a sucker’s bet of epic proportions. We couldn’t get enough of the story in 1998; it’s about to be a stampede to movie theaters this weekend—trust.
The Best Man Holiday doesn’t disappoint. The movie preview gods saw fit to grace me with an advanced screening of the film last week, and I ‘clare fo’ Sweet Baby Jesus, I haven’t enjoyed a feel-good flick like this in a long time. This time around, the gang gathers together to celebrate Christmas, and they bring along the baggage they dropped the last time they were all together, and some extra luggage to boot: Lance (Chestnut) is still mad at Harper (Diggs) and madly in love with his cheating wife, Mia (King); Harper is in love with now-wife Robyn but still can’t control the sexual attraction he has for Jordan (Long); Julian (Perrineau) is still a blabbermouth caught between the mouthy ex (De Sousa) and the stripper-turned-housewife (Hall) and Quentin (Howard) is still that fool. As the weekend unfolds, drama ensues, taking us on a rollercoaster ride of emotions, the likes of which make movies of this particular genre—smart, sexy, hilarious, unapologetically Buppy and Black with a smidge of ratchet—treasured classics.
Did I love it? Hell. Yes. I promise you, The Best Man Holiday felt like… home. Malcolm Lee did a stellar job maintaining the familiarity of our favorite characters, but advancing their storylines so that they’ve matured with us, the audience. Each is in a point in their lives where they’re dealing with grown folk business—the kind that we all can identify with because we’re there, too: we’ve got a little age on us, more wisdom, babies, the complications that come with marriage and parenting and work and finances and the baggage that all of this brings. The film’s characters don’t handle it all perfectly—indeed, it gets messy at times. But that’s life, isn’t it? We can all relate. Which is what made The Best Man so perfect and The Best Man Holiday just as special.
I was barely out of the movie theater from seeing the advanced screening when I started plotting the perfect The Best Man Holiday Hot Chocolate Party Girls Night Out with my besties. We’re doing it big tonight: ten of us are going to see the movie together at our local theater. (Note: my planning early paid off. I had to pile through two different theaters and five different showings before I could secure enough tickets for me and my girls. Apparently, everybody and their mama is going to see The Best Man Holiday tonight, and enough sistas were thinking ahead to buy out several theaters—a full two weeks before the flick opens! Go Malcolm!)
My girls and I are kicking off our night by gathering at my place to watch The Best Man—you know, to get the juices flowing. And in keeping with my spiked hot chocolate girlfriends’ parties, we’re sending up a Blackgirl “cheers” to the chocolate male stars of the movie. Chocolate desserts will be involved. And a signature chocolate cocktail styled by moi. Tonight’s elixir: Salted Caramel Rocky Road Martinis.
Oh, I told you—it’s about to go down.
And after we enjoy out desserts and our adult dranks, we’re going to pile into Uber SUVs—there will be 10 of us and we want to enjoy our cocktails without restraint and arrive alive to see Morris Chestnut in all his glory! Hallelu!—and head over to the theater to enjoy the show.
Enjoy The Best Man Holiday. I know you’re going to love it!
Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.