An undeniable cast. The best use of fan service and callbacks of just about any “late sequel” I’ve seen. Does Coming 2 America capture the magic of the original? This is no classic. But did I enjoy it all throughout? Yes.
Each time the movie felt like it dragged a bit, it provided a moment that rewarded those of us who have seen the original a hundred times.
Perhaps the greatest flaw in Coming 2 America is it focus on Lavelle Junson (Jermain Fowler) over the more interesting daughters of Akeem (Eddie Murphy). Princess Meeka (KiKi Layne) was a far richer and more interesting character than her half-brother; so was Mirembe (Nomzamo Mbatha). And in spite of the inspired casting of Leslie Jones as Mary Junson, the talented women who stole every one of their scenes are under utilized.
Nearly all notable members of the original cast returns, which I found more delightful than tired. A quiet scene in McDowell’s of Zumunda with Cleo (John Amos) is one of the film’s best, and a surprise cameo by Fresh Peaches and Sugar Cube (the beat boxing twins from the club in the original’s dating montage) is a highlight.
Will I watch this again? Probably not. But was I glad to spend a Friday night with these characters? Absolutely.