'Are We Done Yet?': Don't Even Start

Friday, April 6, 2007

Following up on his execrable 2005 semi-hit "Are We There Yet?," Ice Cube once again turns the world off with a scowl in "Are We Done Yet?," a remake of the classic 1948 Cary Grant comedy "Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House" and surely the first and last excuse ever proffered for mentioning Cube and Grant in the same sentence.

Cube's Nick Persons, having survived a cross-country road trip with his girlfriend, Suzanne (Nia Long), and her two brats (Aleisha Allen and Philip Bolden), has now married Suzanne and taken the brats in as his stepchildren. "Are We Done Yet?" opens with Suzanne announcing she's pregnant -- with twins, it turns out -- and Nick decides to move his burgeoning family to a huge money pit outside Portland, Ore.

What, you've seen "The Money Pit"? And "Mr. Blandings"? And any number of nominal comedies with shticks about collapsing roofs, shattering windows and incompetent contractors? Then you've seen "Are We Done Yet?," whose only additions to the predictable mix are a talking raccoon, a manic real-estate-agent-slash-contractor and a subplot involving sturgeon. John C. McGinley from "Scrubs" gets to strut some of his comic stuff as the deranged builder, but he's the only passable feature in a property that should be condemned.

-- Ann Hornaday

Are We Done Yet? PG, 87 minutes Contains sexual innuendo and brief profanity. Area theaters.

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