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Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
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Tragic 1 Star

Eddie Murphy
Arsenio Hall
James Earl Jones
John Amos.
John Landis.
Eddie Murphy
David Sheffield.
Running Time
116 minutes

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Coming to America
Mick Dundee arrived in 1986, got the cross-cultural laughs, got the girl, then buggered off. Now Eddie Murphy's African prince is planning to do the same.

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On his 21st birthday, Prince Akeem (Murphy) decides to leave the luxurious homestead in an unnamed-yet-poverty-free African country to find an American bride who will love him for himself and not his title.

John Landis directs Eddie Murphy again, with varying results. The premise is Eddie’s, his rich African prince travelling to the Big Apple to find a true queen and his own values amid the endless honking and fast food hell. Poor lad - his parents, until now, had virtually enslaved him in a world where voluptuous nymphs bathe the royal penis every morning, where rose petals precede every stride and where elephants serve as pets.

It’s not up to the society-swap standards of Trading Places (which is sharply referenced in one scene), perhaps because it’s scope is so large – every scene seems to look for a laugh as it holds up Akeem’s nobility (of character here, not of blood) against the treacheries of the New World.

Motormouth Murphy is, of course, perfectly cast as the prince (as well as hilariously-drawn minor roles), whilst Arsenio Hall does a superb job as his wing-man and James Earl Jones brings some meat to the jilted father role. These three rescue the plot from it's tiresomely predictable premises and help Landis turn out another guaranteed success.

Landis' latest keeps you laughing not with it's originality (of which there is little) but with it's confidence to out-joke it's predecessors on this much-trodden ground.

Reviewed by Gavin Bainbridge

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Coming to America
Empire Star Rating

tp://]Comi ng To Americaack in the day I`ve watched this countless times on tv and VHS but I haven`t watched the dvd since I own it, so tonight I gave that a spin. It still is a wonderfully enjoyable comedy, from the time that Eddie Murphy was still funny and not talking to animals. The supporting parts from James Earl Jones and John Amos are cool and the now classic one-liners and dialogues are still good. /B] ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by TheGodfather at 22:27, 19 November 2013 | Report This Post

Don't be stupid Empire, 3 stars? Nothing less than 4 stars in my opinion. Murphy was incredibly hilarious especially playing the barber shop men. And how can you not laugh your arse off at the "Soul Glo" advert and Samuel L Jackson tryin to rob McDowells! Arsenio Hall also does great as his side-kick and i think you're wrong about the lack of originality because i don't think there's any film like Coming to America. Great film, very funny and sweet, well done Murphy and co. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by mozzy_gal at 17:27, 20 April 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

L: Tech_Noir I find Placesle overrated. I prefer To Americasp; Though you're wrong Tech, I do think Murphy's performance as Akeem is better, as he plays a straighter more gentle kind of comedy in to America than his usual motormouth persona (though I like that fine). James Earl Jones is brilliant as his dad too. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Dirty Hartigan at 21:58, 26 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

L: jermreen I'm going to have to give 3 aswell, tis a bit daft in places but fun at times. Places still his best film and one of the best films of the eighties.ote]   I find Placesle overrated. I prefer To America ... More

Posted by Tech_Noir at 20:15, 26 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

I'm going to have to give 3 aswell, tis a bit daft in places but fun at times. Trading Places still his best film and one of the best films of the eighties. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jermreen at 20:11, 26 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

Agree with everyone else, this is at /i]four star material.   "Oh Lisa you've hit the jackpot this time, he makes Darryl look like a welfare case!"   "When you think of garbage, think of Akeem!" ... More

Posted by paulyboy at 13:39, 26 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

Its a great film and i love it to bits.  Eddie has never been better at playing the straight guy or at providing the funny side characters that get far to out of hand in his other films but here they dont stay on screen to long to be a pain.   And i will always remember how the BBC cut it when they showed it so Sam L Jacksons line was cut from something like "mother fucker" to "mother lover".   Great bit of 80s cheese also isn't a bad thing to cheer you when you get down ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by goldleader at 13:31, 25 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

Three stars?? Don't be stupid, To Americalassic! FIVE STARS!! p; On top of all the humour it's also a very sweet love story. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Tech_Noir at 19:52, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

Hey Stu, your rent's due motherfucker. Don't be pulling that falling down the stairs shit, are you conscious?" ... More

Posted by Kazuya at 19:49, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

"you sweat from a baboons balls!" "hippopotamous shit!" ... More

Posted by kumar at 19:42, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: Coming to America

Ridiculous. It's a four star film at least, one of the funniest I've ever seen actually, Murphy is on top form, the in-jokes are cool, the whole McDowell's element is hilarious, even Arsenio Hall is funny in this one. I've watched it dozens of times with friends, that and another Landis knockout, Trading Places. Besides the good story, the film also has a very absorbing atmosphere, even though there is some use of edgy dialogue and various scenes that push the envelope, it's really very sweet. ... More

Posted by Kazuya at 19:29, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

RE: 3 stars?

yes there are. this film is quality, it has my sides splitting! fucking love this film "DONT STALL ME FAT BOY, COMEOOOOOON MOOOVE!" it really is amazing ... More

Posted by kumar at 19:20, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

3 stars?

Thats criminal! i thought it was H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S!!...Just let your sooouuullll can you not love that? And how come no-one hasn't commented yet? Are there not any Eddie Murphy fans in the house? ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by mozzy_gal at 18:04, 15 January 2008 | Report This Post

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