Soul Men is an American musical comedy film directed by Malcolm D. Lee, and starring Samuel L. Jackson, Bernie Mac, Sharon Leal and Sean Hayes, released on November 7, 2008. This was Bernie Mac's last film appearance; he died on August 9, 2008.
Both Bernie Mac and Isaac Hayes died in unrelated circumstances on August 9 & 10 of 2008, respectively. Director Lee said the film was heavily re-edited to soften the tone of the film, as a tribute to the two actors.
Two former backup soul singers, Louis Hinds (Samuel L. Jackson) and Floyd Henderson (Bernie Mac), who have not spoken to each other in 30 years, reluctantly agree to travel across the country together to a reunion concert to honor their recently deceased lead singer, Marcus Hooks (John Legend). Cleo (Sharon Leal), a beautiful young woman in an abusive relationship, accompanies them as a new singer; she is believed to be Floyd's daughter but is really Louis'. A few problems come their way, involving Cleo's wanna-be gangsta rapper boyfriend, Lester (Affion Crockett), Floyd's fling with Rosalee (Jennifer Coolidge) and a lot more leading up to their big performance at the Apollo Theater, and the duo reform a bond that they lost 30 years ago.
The score for the film was composed by Stanley Clarke. The title song, "Soul Music" by Anthony Hamilton, which serves as the fictional trio's 1969 hit single, was written and produced by Frank Fitzpatrick. The official soundtrack was released November 4, 2008 by Stax Records, and features music by John Legend, Isaac Hayes, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, and others.
Soul Men received generally mixed reviews from film critics. Based on 99 reviews, Rotten Tomatoes reported that 44% of critics stated that Soul Men features lively performances from Bernie Mac and Samuel L. Jackson, and some hilarious moments, but ultimately suffers from an unoriginal script. On Metacritic, another review aggretator, reported that critics gave the film an average score of 49/100, based on 23 reviews.
The film opened at #6 with $5,000,000 behind Zack and Miri Make a Porno, Changeling, High School Musical 3: Senior Year, Role Models, and Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (which Bernie Mac was also in). At the conclusion of its domestic theatrical run on February 5, 2009, the film's gross was $12,082,391 which makes the film a flop.
The film was released on DVD on February 10, 2009 and by the 5th week, about 483,360 units have been sold, bringing in $9,443,721 in revenue. This does not include Blu-ray Disc sales.
- Soul Men 2008 Movie Official Website
- Soul Men 2008 Community
- Soul Men 2008 Movie Review at Netkushi.com Soul Men 2008 Movie Review
- Soul Men at the Internet Movie Database
- Soul Men at AllMovie
- Soul Men at Rotten Tomatoes