Diary of a Mad Black Woman | Chicago Reader

Diary of a Mad Black Woman

Rated PG-13 116 minutes

Playwright-actor-producer Tyler Perry—a star of the so-called chitlin' circuit, with eight shows currently credited to him—adapts one of his hits for the big screen (2002), directed by Darren R. Grant. The title heroine (Kimberly Elise)—who's angry, not crazy—is dumped by her rich attorney husband (Steve Harris) for a white bimbo after 18 years of marriage; eventually she gets even and finds both true love (Shemar Moore) and her soul's salvation. Perry plays her battle-ax grandmother Madea (featured in several Perry shows) as well as Madea's lecherous brother and his upstanding son, and Cicely Tyson plays her mother. The stylistic discontinuities and pile-driver excesses can be off-putting for an outsider like me, but for fans this may well be part of the appeal.

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