HTF REVIEW: "Juwanna Mann" (with screenshots)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ronald Epstein, Nov 12, 2002.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder

    Jul 3, 1997
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    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein

    Juwanna Mann

    Studio: Warner Brothers
    Year: 2002
    Rated: PG-13
    Film Length: 91 minutes
    Aspect Ratio: 16X9 Enhanced Widescreen (1.85:1)
    Subtitles: English, French and Spanish

    From the moment I opened this week's screener
    package from Warner Brothers and saw Juwanna
    Mann sitting inside, I knew I was in trouble.
    It's another one of those films we have seen
    countless times before -- boy dresses up as girl
    in order to fulfill a singular purpose. As if we
    haven't had enough of these type of films, now
    comes this product of two newcomers: director Jesse
    Vaughn and screenwriter Bradley Allenstein, who
    essentially give us the black "Tootsie" of basketball.
    Hot-tempered Jamal Jeffries (Miguel A. Nunez Jr.)
    is the NBA's hottest star. He is a man who loves
    himself more than his game. He is a man who also
    believes that his talent is so fierce that he can
    do anything and get away with it. When he goes too
    far by stripping down to his barest essentials at a
    televised game, he finds himself broke and without
    a profession. Even his manager Lorne (Kevin Pollack)
    wants nothing to do with him.
    Moving back in with his Aunt Ruby (Jenifer Lewis)
    after losing his house and fed-up girlfriend
    (Kimberly 'Lil Kim' Jones), he soon concocts a
    brilliant idea that enables him to return to his
    basketball career: he will joining the WUBA (a
    substitution for WNBA) posing as female player
    Juwanna Mann. Jamal's fraudulent plan works, as he
    is instantly recruited to a winning team and
    strikes up a warm friendship with gorgeous teammate
    Michelle Langford (Vivica A. Fox). Matters become
    even more complicated when Juwanna realizes that
    he is falling for his teammate Michell, who shows
    him that there is more to women than meets the eye.
    How is the transfer?
    There's no arguing that this film ranks right
    up there amongst Warner's consistently perfect
    transfers. The film comes across with brilliant
    clarity, razor sharp images, and lots of eye-popping
    colors (especially in the basketball arena). Black
    levels are as deep as expected, and there is no hint
    of any film grain. Overall, this transfer is an
    eye-pleasing experience.
    Reading the DVD specs on the back cover brought
    me to this first-time notation: Dolby Digital
    5.1 Soundtrack remastered for Home Theaters
    Now that's interesting. The 5.1 mix is
    certainly aggressive enough, thanks to the help of
    the film's score that surrounds the entire listening
    area. There's a lot of punch to the film's soundtrack
    not only across the front channels, but also in the
    LFE channel that provided pounding response to the
    Hip-Hop beats. The rears are very active here,
    providing abundant background support, most notably,
    the sounds of court side cheering fans during the
    basketball games.
    Special Features
    Just in case you thought one wasn't enough, this
    DVD features two full length commentaries.
    The first is with Director Jesse Vaughan and actor
    Miguel Nunez (Jamal/Juwanna). The second is with
    actor Tommy Davidson (Puff Smokey Smoke). I really
    didn't want to spend time with either commentary,
    but managed to listen to a few minutes of the
    Vaughan/Nunez track. Both artists are pretty hyped
    up for this commentary, playing rather well off
    each other. Vaughan talks about some of the toughest
    scenes he had to shoot -- particularly those that
    took place on the basketball court. There's a rather
    interesting story about how a single set light
    managed to bring a thousand gallons worth of water
    crashing through an office belonging to a wealthy
    lawyer. For anyone interested in listening to it,
    this commentary runs quite fluidly as both artists
    poke fun at each other, having very little time to
    catch some air between their words.
    There are nine deleted and expanded scenes
    that include...
    * Jamal giving the "test" on a busty female at
    a party
    * An expanded scene where Jamal makes his escape
    from a physical wearing a mascot costume.
    * From First Class to Economy Class, Jamal gets
    stuck in an airline nightmare.
    * A short clip concerning a bikini wax sports
    one of the funniest lines of the film --
    unfortunately, that scene was deleted from the film.
    * An extended court room ending adds additional
    dialogue that supports Jamal's case.
    A Behind The Scenes Special that was
    originally broadcast on BET, is a basic promo
    piece that shows behind-the-court camera action
    intertwined with comments from Nunez and director
    Jesse Vaughan. Everyone involved in this featurette
    doesn't hesitate to praise the film's star, a person
    who didn't mind sacrificing himself to get the most
    laughs possible. Vaughan predicts that this actor
    will one day be the next Eddie Murphy. We'll see!
    (length: approx. 22 minutes)
    Juwanna Mann: Press Event is a "film inspired"
    radio contest sponsored by a local station. Local
    Yokels come out in force to adorn women's clothing
    and makeup and then attempt some foul shots. How
    they managed to get radio fans to come out and
    embarrass themselves like this is beyond me.
    (length: approx. 2 minutes)
    The Premiere at Mann's Chinese Theater
    begins with Nunez, standing in front of the famous
    venue, talking about his days as a homeless person
    walking down Hollywood Blvd. with a dream of one
    day becoming a star. As the microphone makes its
    way across the red carpet, as we hear interviews from
    co-stars Kevin Pollack, Kim Wayans, Tommy Davidson
    and director Jesse Vaughan.
    (length: approx. 2 minutes)
    There's a Cast & Crew Filmography here as
    well as a Music Video of Fat Joe's #1 hit
    What's Luv?. Also included is the film's
    original theatrical trailer.
    Final Thoughts
    Though the film is highly predictable and not at
    all original, it can be somewhat enjoyable if you
    accept this film at face value -- a simple Summer
    fluff comedy that aims to entertain. It's hard for
    me to recommend this film as anything more than a
    curiosity rental.
    Release Date: November 19, 2002
  2. rodney wiley

    rodney wiley Second Unit

    Nov 23, 2001
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    Wow Ron I would have never expected this to be reviewed. I was gonna check it out in the theaters but it was only there for a hot second so I missed it. Thanks again for all you do and providing this wonderful wealth of knowledge [​IMG]
  3. Fred McHugh

    Fred McHugh Auditioning

    Nov 28, 2001
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    Ron, Maybe your job isn't as easy as I thought. Way to take one for the team.
  4. LaMarcus

    LaMarcus Screenwriter

    Mar 7, 2002
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    I don't know what possessed them to make this movie. I'm curious to hear the 5.1 mix you said is on here. I may use my free rental and check this out. Did you find anything at all funny about the movie Ron?
  5. Brenton

    Brenton Screenwriter

    Jun 25, 2002
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    I will avoid this movie at all costs. I looks to be a steaming heap of crap.
    With flies buzzing around it.
    Juwanna Mann???
    Lots of flies.

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