Def Jam’s How to Be a Player (1997) – Review

1 Star

Def Jam’s How to Be a Player come on the heels of the similarly themed Booty Call. And was in theaters playing opposite Money Talks. Player isn’t nearly as funny or well produced as those other titles, and pales in comparisons. Bill Bellamy stars and proves he doesn’t have the ability to carry a film like Jaime Foxx or Chris Tucker.

Dray (Bill Bellamy) has a problem: He has a girlfriend, Lisa (Lark Voorhies), but can’t seem to say no to any beautiful woman who walks his way. When he’s not with Lisa or hanging out with his buddies, David (Pierre), Kilo (Jermaine `Big Hug’ Hopkins) and Spootie (A.J. Johnson), he’s out with one of his many lady friends. Dray’s sister (Natalie Desselle) is both disgusted and fascinated by his behavior, so she organizes a party for him — and invites all his ladies — to teach him a lesson.

I’ve always like Bill Bellamy. I grew up with his as an MTV VJ, and he was excellent in a supporting role in Any Given Sunday. But he is stranded in an unfunny movie that requires him to do all the hard work for minimal payoff. His character is an obnoxious womanizer with no redeeming qualities. The writing is so thin the script doesn’t even bother to give Dray a backstory, motivation, or shades of complexities. Pointless bottom of the barrel comedy with a mean spirit and few laughs.

Director: Lionel C. Martin
Stars: Bill Bellamy, Natalie Desselle-Reid, Lark Voorhies

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