Baby Boy

26. Baby Boy (2001) [Rated R for strong sexuality, language, violence and some drug use.]

summary from

An immature young adult named Jody (Tyrese Gibson) lives with his mother Juanita (Adrienne-Joi Johnson) in South Central Los Angeles. He spends most of his time with his unemployed best friend Sweetpea (Omar Gooding) and does not seem interested in becoming a responsible adult. However, he is forced to mature as a result of a number of factors, one in particular being his mother’s new boyfriend, an ex-con named Melvin (Ving Rhames) who moves into their home. Another factor is his children – a boy with his current girlfriend Yvette (Taraji P. Henson) and a baby girl with a young lady named Peanut.

directed by: John Singleton

starring: Tyrese Gibson, Taraji P. Henson, Ving Rhames, Snoop Dogg, Mo’Nique

Conservo-Libertarian Reviews: Christian reviews

A Trailer

Abortion/Life Content:

A Voice: No! I don’t want to lose my baby! Baby!

[Tyrese Gibson chows down on Lemonhead candy as Taraji P. Henson dejectedly exits the “Leimert Park Women’s Clinic”]

Tyrese: Come on, babe. You all right? We’re going to go straight home.

Taraji: Jody!

Tyrese: Baby, come on. Just take it easy, okay? Just get in. Take it easy, baby. Baby? Yvette? You going to sleep? Are you hungry? I’ll go to Lucy’s and get a cheese enchilada and a strawberry shake. That’ll make you feel better.

Taraji: I’m fine, Jody.

Tyrese: You don’t need Daddy to be here for you? I’m just trying to take care of you.

Taraji: Seems like you already done that. Leave me alone, Jody. Just get out of my face.

Tyrese: Then I guess you don’t mind if I use your car? Since you’re going to sleep.

Tyrese Gibson: Look at my pretty baby. One thing I know how to do is make some pretty babies. That’s my baby. That’s Daddy’s little girl. When will you say, “Daddy”? You want to go to Disneyland? That’s my baby. Sleep, sleep, sleep.

A.J. Johnson: How’s Yvette?

Tyrese Gibson: She be all right. Sleeping.

A.J.: I can’t give you money every time you get a girl pregnant.

Tyrese: I know, Momma.

Woman: Why are you still with him, anyway? Y’all forever up there in the clinic.

Taraji P. Henson: It ain’t Jody’s fault. It take two. Shouldna stopped taking my pills.

Woman: There you go, blaming yourself again. […] What did he say about ya’ll getting a place together?

Taraji P. Henson: Jody don’t wanna live with me. He wannna live with his mama. Jody, my Jody. My baby a mama’s boy, that’s all. He ain’t never gonna leave his mama.

Woman: Then let him #### his mama then, ####. Have her ### all up at the clinic.

Taraji P. Henson: “Trojan. Very Sensitive. Lubricated. America’s No. 1 Condom.” At least you went all out. All I get is a trip to the clinic. Give me my shake!


part of a review by Cynthia Fuchs:

John Singleton’s new movie begins with a bang. But it’s not the sort of bang you’d expect from the guy whose first film was the earnest Boyz N the Hood (1991), or whose last, the explosive Shaft (2000), had its Armani-clad protagonist declaring, “It’s Giuliani time!” as he stalked off to blow away a few bad cops. The first bang in Baby Boy inverts such machismo. A narrator lays out the theory that African American males are infantalized, oppressed by racism, overprotected by their mamas, never encouraged to take on adult responsibilities, but instead to be angry about what they don’t have. Seemingly content to stay back, they call their friends their “boys” and their homes their “cribs.” The film’s initial image graphically backs up the claim: 20-year-old protagonist Jody (singer-model-VJ-first-time-actor Tyrese Gibson) is inside a womb, where he’s imagining himself curled up and fetal. But instead of feeling protected, he’s about to be aborted. You hear the blood pumping, medical machines beeping, and then a woman crying, “I don’t want to kill my baby.”

Bang. The scene cuts to Jody, eating candy and waiting on the sidewalk outside a clinic. His girlfriend Yvette (Taraji P. Henson) emerges, distraught after her abortion. She’s grieving, he’s frustrated, and both are feeling hurt and inarticulate. And so Jody—who already has one child with Yvette, a son named Joe-Joe—slams out the door to visit his second babymama, Peanut (Tamara Bass), still living at home with her Mercedes-driving mother, who helps look after her and Jody’s daughter. When this encounter with his little boo is less than comforting, Jody heads home at last, where he finds his mother Juanita (A. J. Johnson) hard at work in her garden-to-be, planning where she’ll put her collards, cabbage, and sage, and her awning from Home Depot, and not paying nearly enough attention to her baby boy.

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One Response to Baby Boy

  1. Pingback: Welcome | Abortion in Film

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