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DVD Review: Cheryl Dunye’s My Baby’s Daddy on Buena Vista Home Entertainment

The film is ugly as sin, but it gets a top-of-the-line video transfer.

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My Baby’s Daddy

I was indisposed when a Miramax publicist called to tell me that a media screening I had been scheduled for had been moved. When my roommate asked what the woman’s phone call was regarding, she nonchalantly replied, “My baby’s daddy.” That’s comedy! The same, of course, can’t be said for Miramax’s ghetto variation of Three Men and a Baby (three babies do not mean three times the fun). Geeky wannabe inventor Lonnie (Eddie Griffin), salesman-wannabe-boxer G (Anthony Anderson) and wannabe record producer Dominic (Michael Imperioli) live in the same house and do everything at the same time. Not only do they fuck and impregnate their girlfriends (and/or one night stands) on the same night, they become daddies nine months later at the same exact time. Have you noticed a trend yet? Each buffoon gets his own prickly subplot, which they successfully persevere as soon as they pass Mr. Mom 101: Lonnie ditches a put-on Mac Daddy routine, woos a girl that’s “in his league” and becomes a successful inventor; G finally connects with his Asian girlfriend’s father (over ganja and a 40, of course); and Dominic learns that children can have one daddy and two mommies. There’s no time to be insulted by the endless string of racial jokes considering how infuriatingly literal the film is: G’s no-good cousin is named, umm, No Good (Method Man); Dominic’s boy barfs and is referred to as “the Exorcist baby” (naturally); the Lamaze coach played by Amy Sedaris advises Lonnie’s hoochie mama to “get into your favorite position” and the woman does just that (read: doggy-style); and when the ladies in the film are asked to “push it,” enter Salt ‘N Pepa on the film’s soundtrack. This kind of literal-mindedness should be a crime. The record executive in the film that butts heads with Dominic amusingly works as a parody of Death Row’s Suge Knight (he’s named Drive By and forces Dominic’s “white OutKast” to sign a “Don’t Fuck With Me” contract) but Tiny Lister really shouldn’t be allowed to act.

Image/Sound

Surprise, surpise. My Baby’s Daddy is ugly as sin, but the video transfer it receives on this Buena Vista Home Entertainment DVD is top-of-the-line. Exteriors are a little muggy, but edge enhancement is nil, color delineation is remarkable, and colors are surprisingly vibrant. Even better is the Dolby Digital 5.1 surround track. Dialogue is crisp and surrounds are lush and expansive. You wouldn’t want to share a house with Eddie Griffin, Anthony Anderson, and Michael Imperioli, but this lovely sound transfer is very welcoming.

Extras

First up is a disposable behind-the-scenes featurette that, and this is to the credit of the folks at BVHE, allows Eddie Griffin to take center stage. That’s followed by no less than 18 deleted and extended scenes from the film (including the complete version of Little T’s music video)-sorry, no “play all” function is available, so you’ll have to go through the scenes one by one. Rounding out the disc is a gag reel and trailers for My Baby’s Daddy, Scary Movie 3, and Carolina.

Overall

The film is ugly as sin, but it gets a top-of-the-line video transfer.

Cast: Eddie Griffin, Anthony Anderson, Michael Imperioli, Method Man, Tiny Lister, John Amos, Joanna Bacalso, Ling Bai, Amy Sedaris Director: Cheryl Dunye Screenwriter: Damon Daniels, Brent Goldberg, Eddie Griffin, David Wagner Distributor: Buena Vista Home Entertainment Running Time: 86 min Rating: PG-13 Year: 2004 Release Date: May 25, 2004 Buy: Video, Soundtrack

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