Don't Be A Menace To South Central While Drinking Your Juice In The Hood (1996)

DVD Cover (Paramount)
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Ranked #1,521
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"Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking your Juice in the Hood" is a parody of several U.S. films about being in the 'Hood', for instance "Boyz n the Hood", "South Central", "Menace II Society", "Higher Learning" and "Juice". We follow Ashtray as he returns to the place he grew up in and meet his father and his basket-case friends. Crazy stuff happens. For example, Ashtray is older than his father and his best friend Loc Dog's grandmother is a trigger-happy old lady who blames her eccentric-looking kid for not being tough enough. --IMDb
Shawn Wayans
Shawn Wayans
Marlon Wayans
Marlon Wayans
Tracey Cherelle Jones
Tracey Cherelle Jones
Chris Spencer
Chris Spencer
Suli McCullough
Suli McCullough
Review by Chad
Added: August 13, 2007
We already know that those Wayans kids can parody the summer blockbusters and the latest horror offerings with their Scary Movie series, but if one takes a trip back to about ten years ago, you'll also see that they have a pretty good idea of how to spoof the urban drama / "reality check" films that were so prevalent back then. Boyz n the Hood, Jungle Fever, Menace II Society, and plenty of other similar films are all fair game in this roast of the genre, and much like in their recent offerings, Mrs. Wayans' baby boys simply know how to make the audience laugh.

As for the plot... well, think about what would happen if you took a small piece from all of those urban drama movies that came out in the mid-nineties, threw them into a blender, and let those Wayans fellows mold the resulting goo into something that will truly stick to your ribs. The main storyline here follows Ashtray (Shawn Wayans), a teenager whose mother has just sent him back into the hood to live with his father so that he can learn to be a man. There, he partners up with his thuggish cousin Loc Dog (Marlon Wayans), his black panther / white-lover friend Preach (Chris Spencer), and his wheelchair-bound friend Crazy Legs (Suli McCullough) in an attempt to survive the daily trials and tribulations of growing up in the hood. He soon meets Dashiki (Tracey Cherelle Jones), a woman who is - how to put this nicely - the neighborhood slut, and although she has seven kids with an eighth on the way, Ashtray quickly falls in love with her... but can the two make it out of the hood?

Much like Scary Movie, the storyline found here serves only to move us from one spoof to the next and does an excellent job with that. There's really not a whole lot that can be said about it: it's there, things happen, and it moves us from one scene to the next, but when you watch these kids get hounded by an Asian woman in a convenience store, a break-dancing contest between two old ladies in a church, or a grandmother who reenacts a scene from Dead Presidents, you'll quickly forget that the storyline is threadbare. You may not have an award-winner when all is said and done, but you'll definitely get a lot of laughs along the way.

Much of this can be attributed to the jokes found within as well as the acting performances from all of the leading guys. You either love the Wayans' or you hate them, and if you happen to fall on the former side of things, you'll certainly get a lot of entertainment out of Shawn and (especially) Marlon in their respective roles. The jokes also work so well due to the fact that the source material was extremely ripe for the picking around the time that this film was released: I realize all of the problems that we had (and still have to an extent) with gangs, welfare mothers, and violent hoods that kids can't get away from, but back in the mid-nineties, these films were seemingly coming out on a weekly basis. They had their market and there were a handful of good films to come out of the mix, but they had moved far past the saturation point when the Wayans' showed up with their warning about drinking juice in the hood.

Fans of the Wayans Brothers should already have this one in their collection, and thanks to it having recently found its way into the bargain bin, those without it can add it to their collection for a mere five bucks. Don't Be a Menace probably won't change your mind about their talent levels if you're not a fan of their style of humor, but if you enjoyed Scary Movie or if you simply like a good fart joke mixed with some hilarious sight-gags, pick this one up with the quickness. At that price, it's a no-brainer. 8/10.
Tristan #1: Tristan - added 08/13/2007, 08:07 AM
Great movie. Far better than the Scary Movies ever were. Need to upgrade from VHS to DVD on this one. 9/10
bluemeanie #2: bluemeanie - added 08/13/2007, 09:48 AM
Very funny parody. Probably my favorite Wayans Brothers film. 8/10.
QuietMan #3: QuietMan - added 08/13/2007, 10:55 AM
one of the best paroidies ever. it's clever and stupid at the same time 8/10
Ginose #4: Ginose - added 08/13/2007, 05:54 PM
The Wayans have done some good parodies and some pointless parodies, this was one of the better ones. Hillarious. 7.4/10
Edd #5: Edd - added 03/31/2008, 10:01 AM
Best film parody of all time probably. Right up there with Spaceballs and Scary Movie 2. 10/10
Lucid Dreams #6: Lucid Dreams - added 08/20/2010, 06:38 PM
This was good, but I would never compare it to Spaceballs. 8/10
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