BOOMERANG FOR VALENTINE’S DAY
It’s taken a while, but BOOMERANG has finally been generally acknowledged as one of the great romantic comedies. Here’s two articles that testify to his enduring appeal:
HUFFINGTON POST: 9 MOVIES THAT CHANGED THE WAY WE THINK ABOUT BLACK LOVE
“Of all movies on this list, Reg Hudlin’s ‘Boomerang’ has the unique distinction of boasting the greatest film cast of all time. I mean, c’mon: Eddie Murphy, Robin Givens, Halle Berry, David Alan Grier, Martin Lawrence, Eartha Kitt, Chris Rock, John Witherspoon and more! Truly, it offers a gamut of blackness. And while ‘Boomerang’ abides by some typical rom-com themes (namely, the ‘playboy-learns-the-error-of-his-manipulative-ways’ character arc), it is profound in its depiction of black sexuality. It features mature black sexuality (Eartha Kitt), trifling sexuality (Martin Lawrence), awkward black sexuality (Grier and Berry), queer black sexuality (depicted through actor Geoffrey Holder), righteously self-serving sexuality from a black woman’s perspective (Robin Givens), and ‘Grace Jones sexuality,’ which is so potent and freewheeling as to almost demand its own classification.
Plus, ‘Boomerang’ features all the trappings of iconic 90s-era black cinema: the bluesy background music, the quiet and sensual banter of lovers, the boxy garb popularized by black middle- and upper-class professionals. It is simply the best romantic comedy ever made.” ―Ja’han Jones, reporter at HuffPost
INDIE WIRE – 50 GREATEST ROMANTIC COMEDIES OF ALL TIME
27. “Boomerang” (Reginald Hudlin, 1992)
Eddie Murphy has never really played the traditional Hollywood romantic male lead. Of course, he was charming and adorable in “Coming to America,” but that was more of an urban fairytale than anything else. Despite his good looks, Murphy has seemed much more comfortable hamming it up in a fat suit, or underneath prosthetics, than seducing a woman on screen.
And yet that’s what makes 1992’s “Boomerang” such a wonderful outlier in his filmography. This slick, sophisticated, and immensely likeable rom-com afforded Murphy a rare opportunity to not just be handsome and charismatic, but also vulnerable, playing a high-powered lothario who’s undone by his search for “the perfect woman” when he meets someone he can’t seduce. Co-star Robin Givens keeps pace with Murphy every step of the way as the no-nonsense Jacqueline Broyer.
It’s a testament to Murphy’s skill as a leading man that you like his Marcus Graham even after he cheats on a young Halle Berry — the stacked cast also includes David Alan Grief, Martin Lawrence, Grace Jones, Chris Rock, and Eartha Kitt! — but his uncharacteristic softness proves irresistible.
“Boomerang” performed decently at the box office, but it seems to have left Murphy feeling a little too vulnerable, as he was soon back to hiding underneath fat suits in the “Nutty Professor” movies, voicing animated donkeys, and playing fathers who need to learn important lessons about life. —TO