I was very disappointed by this film. Tyler Perry generally makes two movies a year, a “comedy” and a drama. I generally tend to like the dramas the most because they are just way too crazy. Single Moms Club falls under the drama but this one was way too boring. Nothing really happens. Where is the insane storyline there generally is? Now, there is some craziness, like a kid running away and no one really doing much to find him, but it never came close to throwing kids out of a window like For Colored Girls.
The world needs to jump onboard the train wreck that is Tyler Perry but don’t waste your time with this one.
I think the best way to start with Single Moms Club, Tyler Perry’s latest horrible feature, is to just go down the line of terrible/nonsensical characters.
May (Nia Long) – May is, for all intents and purposes, the main character out of our group of five women, except for the part toward the end where she stops talking to everyone and the movie also stops following her. She lives with her son, Rick, and Rick’s father is a drug addict and Rick is acting out at school. The climax of the movie comes when the women can’t find Rick . . . even though Rick is just at his dad’s house? In what world would a woman have a missing child and not call the child’s father, who lives in the same city and sees the child, to see if he’s there and, you know, tell the father that their child is missing? Tyler Perry’s world!!! May is also a writer, which is important, I guess, when she decides to write a book about herself and her friends. She works at a newspaper, which might be the sweetest job in the world because she leaves work in the morning to meet TK (Tyler Perry), a potential love interest, for coffee. She then leaves the coffee date to go hang out with her friends and drink wine until they have to pick their kids up from school. So basically she works for a few hours and leaves and hangs out with people the rest of the day. I’m glad Tyler Perry is accurately portraying jobs. Not even a particular job. JUST A JOB. TYLER PERRY DOESN’T EVEN KNOW WHAT A 9-5 JOB IS. Jesus. The man that saves her is Tyler Perry (as TK), if you couldn’t guess.
Jan (Wendi McLendon-Covey) – Jan is a businesswoman. That’s all you need to know because that’s all Tyler Perry really wants us to know. She works for a publisher, where she is trying to make partner but is turned down because she has a child. They don’t tell her that exactly, but they do tell her they don’t think she has the time to make partner, even though she points out she’s at work from 9-6 like everyone else, plus weekends. Too bad, you have a kid! She’s also mean for no reason, because of the aforementioned being a businesswoman. She also can’t date because of being a businesswoman. But then, just to change things up, Jan appears to have never seen or interacted with a black person before . . . despite being a businesswoman (in Atlanta). Because that makes sense! Wendi McLendon-Covey was insanely miscast here because she’s legitimately funny, so her whole act as Jan just seemed sarcastic and weird. The man that saves her is Tony (Sean Carrigan), a buff co-worker of May’s.
Lytia (Cocoa Brown) – I think Lytia is supposed to represent Tyler Perry’s vision of poor people. All of them. She’s the only character who appears to be struggling; it’s hinted that May has money problems but she lives in a super nice house and only has one child. Lytia has 5 kids, 2 of whom are in prison. So naturally, she’s a black, heavy, sassy lady who somehow knows everything and nothing at once. She mispronounces things, but is a child-rearing expert. She works at a Waffle House-esque diner, but her son goes to a swanky school because he’s super smart. She chastises her sister for suggesting that Lytia should go on welfare, because Lytia refuses to not work. Um, Lytia, I don’t think that’s how welfare works? But I really shouldn’t be shocked at the fact that Tyler Perry doesn’t understand welfare. The man that saves her is Branson (Terry Crews), a gross guy that stalks her at work until she gives in and makes out with him.
Hillary (Amy Smart) – Hillary is a recently-divorced rich woman who doesn’t know anything about children. And by that I mean not only children in general, but her own children. Her ex-husband is “a powerful attorney” and they have a nice house (not a mansion) in a nice neighborhood, but you would think Hillary had a Queen of Versailles-esque lifestyle. For example, when her baby cries, her method of treatment is to bend down in front of it and ask it what’s wrong, and then start crying herself when the baby doesn’t give her an answer. Okay! She’s upset that her oldest daughter had her period 3 months ago and didn’t tell her, but told the maid that Hillary had to fire. She’s sad because she missed a “beautiful and special” moment with her daughter. Eh, wuh? I guess it goes without saying that if Tyler Perry can’t be bothered to research welfare, he’s not going to attempt to find out what it’s like when a girl gets her period for the first time. But, at least from my experience, getting your period for the first time isn’t an amazing, beautiful thing that makes you hug your mom or anything. I think that only existed in the Huxtable house, in fact. The man that saves her is Peter (Ryan Eggold), her sexy new neighbor.
Esperanza (Zulay Henao) – Three different times I counted Esperanza telling three different people, “Do you know how hard you’re making this on me?” Esperanza, if you’re a grown person telling three different people that they’re making everything so hard on you, maybe because you’re the common denominator here you’re just super whiny and incapable? In fact, that’s exactly what it is. Esperanza has a boyfriend that she won’t introduce to her daughter and whom she’s scared of having in the house because of her controlling ex-husband whom I guess also owns the house. I honestly don’t even remember if she has a job because the only thing memorable about her is that she’s miserable and wears tight, short dresses. The man that saves her is her aforementioned boyfriend who should probably dump her, Manny (William Levy).
Here is something else that happens: Jan finds a copy of May’s manuscript on the floor of May’s house, takes it, and then in the last scene tells May that she switched firms and published May’s book! And she has the book right there! Because book publishing is easy, fast, and you don’t even need permission from the author to do it!!!!!
But honestly, this movie was really boring because it should have come out in the 60’s or 70’s or something. Making the entire movie about how hard it is to be a single mother, without having any basis in reality, is just weird, outdated, and insulting. I also take serious issue with the way Jan was portrayed. Just like Olivia Munn’s character in I Don’t Know How She Does It, Tyler Perry only knows how to portray women who are successful in their careers as unsympathetic hardasses. It’s infuriating. I’m pretty sure Tyler Perry also thinks every successful job that’s not in the entertainment industry is more or less just a lawyer.
Please don’t spend money on this movie. If you want to know what it’s like for a single mother, just ask one. Tyler Perry doesn’t know what a job is, do you really give a shit about what he thinks life is like for single mothers?