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Sunday, March 5, 2023

House Party 2023 * 1/2 Stars


2023's House Party is bad, like 5-day-old Chinese food bad. It's one of those movies that doesn't have a purpose, except for maybe to profit from and/or update the workings of a certain archetype from 1990 (of the same title). I mean not even the smug presence of quote unquote, "GOAT" LeBron James can save this ode to overnight levees. Oh wait, LeBron's acting track record wasn't all that good to begin with.

"House" relies on a hook that um, re-quips the plot from the first film (no pun intended). A couple of so-called club promoters/house cleaners decide to throw a get-together at LeBron's mansion without him knowing about it. You see these two also-rans are in debt so why not make money off of a bunch of partygoers looking to get their groove on at some swanky abode. Chaos doesn't really ensue here, just a couple of breakables, a beatdown by a koala (don't ask), and the stealing of an NBA Championship ring.

At a running time of 100 minutes, House Party is a bit of a slog to sit through. Not much really happens and the film's R-rated high jinks are about as exciting as well, a 3-day paint job. Jokes flop and die, plenty of ganja is smoked (duh), and the cameos with the exception of rapper Kid Cudi, are like boxy fill-ins that could've wound up in any other vehicle. I mean famous dudes like Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, Odell Beckham Jr., and Tristan Thompson show up to say like one line. They probably were on set for minutes and got paid handsomely. Ugh.

Overall, "House" lacks the quick-witted nature, the ghetto charm, and well, the originality of '90's original House Party (which was the first of its kind). Honestly I don't know what this flick is. It's not a true stoner caper, it's certainly not comedy (I laughed maybe once), and it's definitely not de rigueur. This "house", well doesn't win.

Written by Jesse Burleson

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