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THREE CAN PLAY THAT GAME: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
Shante (Vivica Fox) has moved to Atlanta and is now a relationship expert. In one of her case studies, we meet Byron (Jason Winston George), the new winner of a television game show which offers him the chance to work with project manager Carla (Kellita Smith). Trouble is, Carla makes a play for Byron and Byron's girlfriend Tiffany (Jazsmin Lewis) catches them. That's when her good friend Linda (Terri Vaughn) introduces her to Shante, who sets about to teach her how to fix her relationship. Meanwhile, Byron's good friend Gizzard (Tony Rock) is also giving him tips, which are vastly different from those Shante is giving Tiffany.

Review by Louise Keller:
'Every man is a dog and a dog can be trained,' Vivica Fox's relationship expert Shante tells us, believing she has the answer to every couple's problems in this romantic comedy that's targeted at women. The film takes a sharp, comical look at the female psyche versus its male counterpart, offering a five step program to ensure happily ever after results. Comedian Chris Rock's baby brother Tony is great value as Gizzard, the well-meaning best friend who comes up with some hilarious counter punches to Shante's attacks. It's the kind of easy viewing a bunch of girls might enjoy on a girlie-night in, showing men to be stupid and easily manipulated. There are some cute ideas and Fox centres this sequel with polish.

Men can be faithful under the right conditions we are told, and can even be prompted to put that wedding band on the middle finger of the little lady. Shante talks to the audience throughout, reminding us that women have a lot of power and can solve relationship issues, even if drawn to the same mate. (It's called residual behaviour, or in other words, being 'stuck on stupid'). While Shante introduces Jazsmin Lewis' Tiffany to the hilarious 5-step program, which includes forgiveness, isolation, fear, payback and submission, Rock's Tony is working on Jason Winston George's Byron. Be afraid. Be very very afraid. There's plenty of snappy dialogue, and I love the scene when Jason agrees to take Tiffany home to meet his family (Operation Isolation: a situation which has been perfectly stage-managed. As the Love Doctor, Shante knows how to stage manage women's emotional lives, with tools including flowers, sex, flirtation and shopping. She even has the solution for Gizzard, in the shapely form of Melyssa Ford's 'street psychologist' Candy.

Mark Brown's script is good fun and the wonderfully named Mody Mod keeps the pace in tandem with the action as we learn the ups and downs of 'getting infected by the nectar'. It's pretty forgettable stuff, but entertaining while it lasts.

Published July 31, 2008

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

THREE CAN PLAY THAT GAME: DVD (M15+)
(US, 2007)

CAST: Vivica A. Fox, Jason Winston George, Jazsmin Lewis, Tony Rock, Terri J. Vaughn, Kellita Smith

PRODUCER: Vivica A. Fox, Rob Hardy, William Packer, Lita Richardson

DIRECTOR: Mody Mod

SCRIPT: Mark Brown

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Tommy Maddox-Upshaw

EDITOR: Deanna Nowell

MUSIC: Kenyatta Beasley

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Korey Washington

RUNNING TIME: 87 minutes

PRESENTATION: Widescreen

SPECIAL FEATURES: Deleted scenes

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Sony Home Entertainment

DVD RELEASE: June 25, 2008







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