What Should I Watch? Coming to America (1988)
It is 17/03/2020 and the Covid19 is starting to wreak havoc through the world, though we are still very much at a point of confusion and lacking a clear direction of travel. The news cycle is a constant mix of virus, self-isolation and fear. To wake up in this world, which seems inherently worse than the one that I woke up in yesterday is a pretty rubbish way to start the day.
So, I thought, what better way can there be to turn a day around, than watching some comfort inducing TV or Movies?
I knew what I wanted to watch when I logged into Netflix this morning, the 1988 classic, Coming to America.
Directed by John Landis, who gave us other 80's comedy classics like the Blues Brothers (1980), Trading Places (1983), Animal House (1978). The list is very long and includes many esteemed treasures, and also a couple of turds, just to keep the balance.
If this is a film that you have not seen before, what a treat! From the moment that the theme kicks in, and the panning of the skies above Zamunda, we are quickly introduced to Prince Akeem Joffer (Eddie Murphy) and his father King Jaffe (James Earl Jones!).
The film, like most films from the 80's is kinda outdated in a few areas, I think especially just in terms of gratuitious nudity and casual racism. But for now, let's suspend belief and mark that to cultural progression, because, while the heart of this movie is a simple lost story between a noble and a commoner, it is done very well.
Culturally, this was around peak Eddie Murphy and his performance completely carries the entire thing, but it is genuinely funny, and on a day like today - try to laugh!
Coming to America is currently,at the time of writing, available on Netflix UK.