Home | Reviews | Exclusive Writings | Great Links | Miscellaneous | FAQ | Contact Us

Soul Plane /

Rated: R

Starring: Kevin Hart, Snoop Dogg, K.D. Aubert, Method Man, Gary Anthony Williams

Directed by: Jessy Terrero

Produced by: David Scott Rubin
Written by: Bo Zenga, Chuck Wilson
Distributor: MGM


Snoop Dogg in MGM's Soul Plane

     It is hard to explain what Soul Plane is really about or, more so, why I’m half-heartedly recommending it. This is a crude and gross movie with a lowbrow sense of humor and pretty poor acting. But it is also fun, loud, interesting, and often ingenious. Whatever its shortcomings may be, the term “pleasant diversion” could never be used too many times when describing Soul Plane. It’s a phrase I often slap onto clichéd, but enjoyable films, one that my readers are probably tired of. But to not use it as I attempt to explain my views on this picture would be a crime. This flick is just what the doctor ordered for late May, probably the final experience worth partaking in before the flood of summer releases drenches multiplexes across the country.

     What is memorable in Soul Plane? Not much, but this doesn’t detract from one’s ability to enjoy it as they watch. I suppose the only reason to see it is to escape from everyday life and have a genuinely entertaining time for a short, but sweet eighty-six minutes. The concept of the movie is a basic retread of Airplane!, following its predecessor’s general plotline, more or less. It is a rapper-updated version with a take-no-prisoners style, which will serve as a love-it-or-hate-it situation for most people. (That statement might sound ironic, because my opinion falls in between the two). Kevin Hart plays Nashawn, who hops on a plane one day, later crossing paths with a bit of turbulence. In such a weather condition, he is stuck suction-cupped to the airplane’s bathroom toilet, while he watches his dog fall out of cargo, flying into a propeller which shreds it to pieces. Nashawn sues the company and wins $110 million, with which he uses to start up his own airline company. It’s a silly premise, but one could only expect such in a production of this nature.

     There are two very funny aspects to Soul Plane, which make the trashy remainder of it seem acceptable. The first is the contrast between the first-class and coach sections of the plane. In the former, passengers watch the Flight Safety Video on widescreen, plasma TV’s, while in the latter, they’re looking at a barely viewable version, on a busted-out, used tube. Not to mention if one embarking on the luxurious side of the ride is easily bored, they can always head upstairs to dance in the plane’s built-in-club. For the in-flight meal, the wealthy patrons of the new airline can choose between lobster, fillet mignon, and other prized dishes. Those sitting in the back half of the vehicle have to take one piece of Popeye’s chicken and pass the remainders to the next person in their vertical row, who repeats the process. Among those eating the famous fast-food restaurant’s product, the second hilarious feature Soul Plane has to offer can be found, Tom Arnold as Mr. Hunkee. He’s one of the four evident white characters on the trip (the other three are the other members of his family), after being redirected by another airline when his previous flight is cancelled. His daughter, Heather (Arielle Kebbel) turns eighteen onboard, and her conversations with him regarding sex are priceless. However, my spoiling them would be an insult to future viewers of the movie.

     Details take a backseat to chaos here, which undeniably detracts from the comedy as a whole. Development is the sole trait that recent comedies lack, which is incredibly unfortunate. Character’s backgrounds and motives play a huge part of an audience’s response to humor. It is not a good sign when I can only vaguely recollect where Hunkee, his two kids, and girlfriend were traveling to and why they were doing so, a mere two and a half hours after the movie. Aside from maybe three scenes, I will have completely forgotten Soul Plane in sixth months. At least bad movies resonate with you, and as time moves on you develop a greater hatred for them. Something finally comes out of them. Mediocre ones simply mellow for awhile, and are then lost in the sands of time.

     This one will make a terrific matinee trip now and even better bargain-rental in the near future. Plus, anytime moviegoers have the chance to see Snoop Dogg “act”, they should naturally take it. As I reflect upon my experiences with Soul Plane, I do realize it was much better than I expected it would be. Strangely enough, though, I always had an odd curiosity which was begging to see it, even after taking its potential poor quality into consideration. Checking it out doesn’t serve as any great loss; it’s never a painful or relentless affair, fortunately. I suppose nothing but the old saying could elucidate the whole hap better: “Try it. You just might like it.” And I think I’ll just leave it at that.

-Danny, Bucket Reviews (6.10.2004)

Back to Home
The Bucket Review's Rating Scale