Tyler Perry is both a Hollywood anomaly and an enviable success story. Since exploding onto the movie scene just six years ago with Diary of a Mad Black Woman, Perry has produced film after film (including Madea's Family Reunion, Daddy's Little Girls and Why Did I Get Married?), often several in a single year, based on his original stage productions. Almost without exception, each of his films share the same attributes—they are shot on minuscule budgets, receive scathing to tepid critical reviews and end up raking in boatloads of money.
Oh, and Perry usually shows up dressed as a woman.
Perry's latest film is no exception. Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns is not a remarkably well-written, directed or acted film. But Perry seems to have tapped into something very few other African-American filmmakers have, and it apparently continues to guarantee his success: Perry makes clean morality plays for African-American audiences about issues that are not being addressed by mainstream Hollywood cinema.
Saturated with biblical morality and the importance of family and faith, Perry tackles the issues facing lower and middle-class African-American families. Perry, recently named one of the most powerful people in Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly, knows what it's like to grow up on the margins of society. He's never been shy about proclaiming Jesus Christ and his church body as the only lifeline worth holding on to when times get tough.
In Meet the Browns, Brenda (Angela Bassett) is a single mother living in inner city Chicago where life is a daily struggle to keep her three kids fed. Usually indomitable, Brenda begins losing hope after she unexpectedly loses her job, her power is shut off, her babysitter quits and her high-school basketball ...