Madea Goes to Jail

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Madea Goes to Jail
Madea goes to jail-1-1.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Tyler Perry
Produced by Tyler Perry
Reuben Cannon
Written by Tyler Perry
Starring Tyler Perry
Keshia Knight Pulliam
Derek Luke
Robin Coleman
Jackson Walker
Viola Davis
David Mann
Tamela J. Mann
Vanessa Ferlito
Sofía Vergara
Bobbi Baker
Music by Aaron Zigman
Cinematography Alexander Gruszynski
Edited by Maysie Hoy
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release dates
  • February 20, 2009 (2009-02-20)
Running time 103 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $17.5 million[1]
Box office $90,508,336[2]

Madea Goes to Jail is a 2009 parodic comedy-drama film written and directed by Tyler Perry, which was based on his 2006 play. The play and the film deal with Perry's recurring character Madea going to prison for her uncontrollable anger management problems. The play starred Tyler Perry as Madea, Cassi Davis as Ella Kincaid and Cheryl Pepsii Riley as Wanda.


After a high-speed freeway police chase puts Mabel "Madea" Simmons (Tyler Perry) in front of Judge Mablean Ephriam, her trial is short-lived because the police officers did not mirandize Madea, causing the judge to place Madea in an anger management course. The police chase, that Madea was involved in, was seen in the 2008 movie, called, Meet the Browns. After the trial, Brian (Tyler Perry) drives Madea, Mr. Brown (David Mann), and Madea's daughter Cora (Tamela Mann) back home from court. After returning home, Madea finds a party taking place in her house hosted by her brother, Joe Simmons (Tyler Perry). Madea, who couldn't cope with the party goers and the loud music inside and around her house, uses a machine gun to scare the party goers away. In the car, Cora, who is driving, told Madea about her anger management resolutions. During the middle of the conversation, a Cadillac CTS cuts ahead of them. After both of vehicles cross the intersection, Madea smashes her daughter's Chevrolet Uplander into the car ahead, causing it to deviate sharply to the right into a church site. At Dr. Phil McGraw's office, Madea consults with Dr. Phil for anger management course, but the consultation came to a bad ending when Madea answered a question with the same question he asked. After returning home from her anger management counseling, Madea, needing to buy some food, calls Cora to talk about sitting in the beauty salon for over 5 hours (as Joe implied that Madea had neglected Cora that she left Madea to "starve to death one day"). While she is on the phone with Cora, Cora asks for some time with herself, causing Madea to get angrier than before. After Madea hangs up the phone, Joe predicts that she will get into trouble if she goes to the store. Madea ignores him and goes anyway, driving in her car. At Kmart, Madea uses the forklift truck to remove a red Pontiac Solstice out of a parking space, the space that Madea wanted, and ruin the red car by flipping over up-side-down. While the woman calls her husband, who is a police officer, and tells him exactly what Madea had done to her car, Madea escapes from the scene. Afterwards, Madea gets arrested by the SWAT team, like what Joe predicted before she left for Kmart. The next day, Madea goes to court again, where Judge Greg Mathis sentences her to prison for 5 to 10 years for such dangerous behaviors.

While in prison, Madea befriends Candace, protecting her in a "motherly" way, and fights with Big Sal (Robin Coleman) who is always sexually harassing and flirting with Candace. Candace, Madea, T.T., and Donna all attend a class taught by Ellen at the prison, mostly to get time off of their sentences. During a lesson about forgiveness, Madea notices that some of the inmates would rather play victim instead of take the blame for their crimes. Suddenly, she decides she has heard enough and tells the whole class they need to stop being the victims and forgive those who lead them on the paths they were on, as they weren't the ones who ended up in jail; Candace obviously moves on by her words. During a visit with Josh, Candace finally lets out why she is how she is. Candace admits that she called his name repeatedly as it happened, but he never came for her (he didn't protect her, she puts it), and she held on to that anger for so long, that she forgot how to move on. But with everything she learned from Ellen and Madea, Candace finally decides to forgive Josh and pick up the pieces of her life.

On Josh's wedding day, Chuck, Josh's best man at the wedding and best friend, tells him that Linda had falsified Candace's file to get her sent to prison and away from him. During the wedding ceremony, Josh tells the entire congregation with their boss in attendance what Linda had done, and leaves her at the altar while still in his wedding tuxedo. Josh then rushes to the prison where he admits to Candace that he loves her and the two kiss. Because of the now-revealed news of Linda's tampering with client files, there is a public outcry and a protest movement gains momentum to set Madea, Candace, and the others free. Candace, Madea, and some other women, that Linda prosecuted, have their convictions overturned and are released, and Linda will be forced go to prison for her crimes. Madea goes home with Mr. Brown, Cora, and Brian, along with Candace, going home with Josh.




Critical reception[edit]

The film received mixed reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 30% based on 50 reviews, with an average score of 4.9/10. The consensus says, "Divided between sincere melodrama and populist comedy, Madea Goes to Jail fails to provide enough laughs -- or screen time -- for its titular heroine."[3] Another review aggretator, Metacritic, gives the film a score of 50%, based on 13 reviews.[4]

Sam Adams of the Chicago Tribune gave the film 2.5/4 stars and wrote that "if the movie is a mess, it's a purposeful mess, cannily, if not artfully, pushing all the right buttons to ensure Perry will be back for another round."[5]

According to a New York Times review,[6] the film gives Madea herself a much more central role than some of the previous Madea movies, in some of which she is merely a commentator on events.

The Boston Globe reported that "(Madea's) character epitomizes Perry's ongoing commitment to dramatizing as many rungs on the ladder of the black experience as he can. His aim never produces a completely satisfying or consistently competent-looking movie (his heart's in the right place, if not his camerawork)."[7]

Box office[edit]

On its opening weekend, the film opened at #1, and grossed $41,030,947 (2,032 theaters, $20,192 average), the biggest Friday to Sunday take since Twilight in November 2008. It broke Madea's Family Reunion weekend gross at $30 million as the highest weekend gross for a Tyler Perry film. It broke Saw III '​s record at $33 million for the highest weekend gross for Lionsgate Entertainment. "We were cautiously optimistic we could do 30-plus," Steve Rothenberg said.[8] On its second weekend, it dropped 61 percent, but remained at #1 grossing another $16,175,926 (2,052 theaters, $7,883 average), bringing the 10-day gross to $64,525,548.[9] The film closed on April 23, 2009 with a final domestic gross of $90,508,336.[2]

Home media[edit]

An exclusive preview was included on the cinematic release of Tyler Perry's The Family That Preys.[citation needed]

Madea Goes to Jail was released on June 16, 2009 on DVD. According to DVDTown, the DVD included six behind-the-scenes featurettes. As of July 12, 2009, 1,125,422 DVD units have been sold, gathering revenue of $18,223,621.[10] A Blu-ray version was released on November 23, 2010.


External links[edit]