No one has ever accused Steve Harvey of being stupid. I've often said that I have to tickle myself at his most of his jokes and that he is at best a so-so comedian; but he is no fool. He is very resourceful and opportunistic.


His book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy and Commmitment stayed on the NY Times best seller list for a while and is the basis of the new film "Think Like a Man". Oh, by the way, Harvey is also the films executive producer. A little self promotion never hurt. A lot of self promotion can reap millions.


He is merely doing what Hasbro is currently doing with Transformers and Battleship - using movies to promote the product while hopefully making a nice little piece of change on the side. This might work.

It takes a dead set aim at the Tyler Perry crowd and offers an eductaion on dignified comedy featuring a mostly all African-American cast. No cross dressing buffonery and very little lecturing.


Directed by Tim Story ("Barbershop", "Fantastic Four", "Hurricane Season") it benefits from a strong cast that blends dramatic talent with comedians and a script by an good up-and-coming writer Keith Merryman ("Freinds with Benefits"). Story then uses a "Valentines Day", "New Years Eve" mini story concept to produce a very likeable film.


Events are seen through the eyes of Cedric (Kevin Hart) who is newly divorced and claiming to be having the time of his life. From the sidelines he watches the relationships develop, mature and modify themselves. His friends are defined as: The Player (Romany Malco), The Mama's Boy (Terrence J), The Dreamer (Michael Ealy), The Non-Committer (Jerry Ferrara), and The Happily Married Guy (Gary Owen). Their relationship are with labeled women The Woman Who is Her Own Man (Taraji P. Henson), 90 day Rule (Meagan Good), the single mom trying to pry the Mama's Boy loose(Regina Hall), The frustrated long-term girlfriend (Gabrielle Union).

After the women get hold of Harvey's book, they start to flip the switch and manipulate their men to achieve what they want. However, the men find out and they make counter moves.


The stronger performances come from Henson and Ealy as she tries to accept that he is not a high powered chef he claims he is. Can she swallow her pride and expectations and settle for less than what she expected. She is the most perfectly cast of the ensemble.


The relationship revelations are discussed by the guys who meet regularly on the basketball court which turns into Hart person comedy stage. His routines and gags keep this two hour flick from collapsing on its own weight. It does bog down, but it never collapses.


Is it an original film? No! But unlike Perry's cash cows, it doesn't bash and then try to uplift. It simply tells several stories ala Garry Marshall's rom coms.


"Think Like A Man" is, yes, a vehicle to get more people to buy Steve Harvey's book but also an entertaining rom com with a light message and the perfect amount of comedy relief.   -- GEOFF BURTON