House party: A reboot that fails to live off its lifeline of celebrity hotspots



(From left)Jacob Latimore, Tosin Cole and D.C. Young Fly star in Springhill Company’s latest comedy, House Party.

In the mighty halls of sports fandom, there are many names which have affirmed themselves as the kings and queens of their craft. Legends such as golf maestro Tiger Woods, the sisterly duo of Venus and Serena Williams, and the legend of Cassius Clay,  better known as Muhammed Ali, are just a few of the many icons whose names are rooted in the GOAT debate. 

In all of this greatness, there is one rivalry that has remained hotly contested since a young man from Akron, Ohio rose from the rank of a bright star to a trailblazing supernova, challenging the legend of Mr. Jumpman himself, Michael Jordan. This rookie, now cemented superstar, is Lebron James. A man who has dominated basketball culture for over 20 years while dipping his toes into another facet of crowd pleasing entertainment: the big screen.

James’s “SpringHill Company,” an entertainment and production company founded alongside his  hometown friend Maverick Carter, has released its newest project in “House Party”. A reboot and remake of the 1990 comedy of the same name. Directed by Calmatic, best known for his work on the music video for Lil Nas X’s 2018 hit “Old Town Road” as well as collaborations with music icons to that of Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino, and Jay-Z, House Partyserves as the LA natives directorial debut for a feature film.

Bringing this cityscape luster into the film, “House Party” follows the efforts of Kevin  (Jacob Latimore) and Damon  (Tosin Cole) as they attempt to throw the rave of the century in Lebron’s multi-million dollar mansion.

Both Kevin and Damon are eager to move beyond their ranks as failing club promoters, with Kevin hoping to make a living through his beat-making aspirations, and Damon to actually be good at promoting. Down on their luck, the duo stumble across the golden egg of club venture potential, earning a cleaning job at Lebron’s estate. Seeing an opportunity to fill their empty pockets, the duo decide to throw their mega party.  

As word spreads fast, Bron’s house quickly becomes the pinnacle of party spots while the basketball phenom is away on a two week long meditation trip to India. I guess wikihow wasn’t lying when it listed reaching enlightenment as the fifth easiest way to improve your jumper.

Before the party to top all parties kicks off, as Kevin and Damon roam the halls of the homeowner whom they first peg to be a Lebron superfan rather than the man himself, they stumble into an almost ethereal room of superstar fandom. 

Serving as a self-referential plaque of egomania, a treasure trove of the King’s greatest memorabilia are stashed away in a room of jerseys, rings, and a secret white powder that he may or may not use as a pregame ritual. Not that kind of ritual guys. 

Adding on a holographic duplicate of Lebron himself, programmed with a sample of congratulatory remarks regarding his work on the court, and along his hairline, this segment embodies the purpose of a film such as “House Party”.

When choosing to bury itself into the dirt of pop culture subtlety, covering the likes of sports, music, film, and even the Illuminati,  this story is only as good as the bizarreness for which it displays. 

You go to a movie like “House Party” when you want to sit back and chuckle as you see 50 Cent waltz into a room, brandish some random dude as a whack mother — you know the rest – and then get pulled out of frame by a Looney Tune-esque sized vaudeville hook. I’m giving a high five to anyone who knows what that is without having to use Google search.

It’s  moments like these in instant succession that allow “House Party” to glow as bright as Lebron’s draft day suit, but whenever the story steps out of this space of cultural callbacks, leaning deeper into the subplot of Kevin and Damon’s brotherly bond, you twiddle your thumbs as you wait for the next celebrity feature.

“House Party” is a fun watch for anyone who likes Lebron, and especially likes his jokes. Sprinkle in a little West Coast comedic tang from the mind of Calmatic, and you have a decent movie experience that you’ll likely forget about within a week, but hey, at least Roscoe’s chicken and waffles makes an appearance. I bet that would be a great party venue.