The moral of the story is: seduction is the devil’s playground. Have you ever done something wrong, knowingly and willingly, and said, “Consequences be damned”? Well, make sure you see Tyler Perry’s “Temptation.” You might think twice about walking on the wild side.
The story centers on childhood sweethearts from small town USA with big dreams for their future. Jurnee Smolett-Bell stars as Judith, a beautiful, young, educated woman in a traditional marriage. Her husband Brice, played by Lance Gross, is pursuing his career as a pharmacist, stuck in his ways, and comfortable in his long-standing relationship with his wife. Big mistake! He’s taking her for granted.
Then up pops the devil. Robbie Jones stars as Harley, a self-made billionaire playboy with the world at his feet.
Judith works for Janice (Vanessa Williams) who runs an exclusive match-making business. Harley is looking to invest in her business and Judith, as the staff psychotherapist is assigned to show him how the company works. This recipe for disaster is aided by Brice, who not only forgets her birthday for a second time, but has her life so spelled out and leaves her very little room for her dream of starting her own marriage counseling business.
Harley is not a billionaire by accident, he reads Judith right away, and she’s putty in his hands. With the help of fashion-savvy Ava (Kim Kardashian), Judith changes her ‘homey’ style to hot, and much to her mother’s consternation Judith becomes a complete stranger to her.
Veteran actress Ella Joyce plays Sarah, Judith’s mother. She raised her daughter in the church, and kept her relatively sheltered. Joyce’s performance is outstanding. When she sizes up the situation she knows her daughter is headed for trouble, and she’s afraid she may be too late.
The talented Brandy Norwood also stars in “Temptation.” She’s a friend and co-worker of Brice; yet, she harbors a secret that will change everything. As Melinda, it’s clear she’s living in terror or hiding from someone. As her friendship with Brice deepens, she offers him a safe haven.
So, why did Tyler Perry write this movie? Here’s a portion of the email he sent his fans. “In this movie, I talk about being tempted, I talk about how to forgive. I talk about how to move on from it, and I also talk about how sometimes the decisions you make when you decide to cheat can stay with you for the rest of your life.”
Don’t make the mistake of thinking this movie is preachy; it’s anything but. As a matter of fact, it will raise some eyebrows. There is a lot going on in this movie. Don’t try to connect the dots. Just go with it.
You are going to be faced with some undeniable truths.
Tyler Perry is also on a mission. He’s looking towards the future of Hollywood, and the next generation of Denzel Washingtons and Halle Berrys on the silver screen. He believes this cast of young actors will be instrumental in answering that call.
Joyce publicly thanked and openly praised Perry. She was pleased with the opportunity of having such a meaty and demanding role, which is unusual for Black female actresses in her age group of 50 and over.
Perry’s mind is obviously on more than making movies, he’s intent on helping change the face of Hollywood.
Tyler Perry’s “Temptation” is more than just a movie. It’s an in-your-face, deglamorized look at what happens when you throw caution to the wind. It’s deliciously wicked.
“Temptation” is in theaters Friday. Go see it, especially if you have a “grass is greener” mentality.
Gail can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.