First Sunday Parent Guide
Parent Movie Review
Durell (Ice Cube) and LeeJohn (Tracy Morgan) are two buddies from a rough Baltimore neighborhood who work at a repair shop. When LeeJohn is caught stealing a TV from his employer, both men are fired and sent to the slammer. But after they get out of jail, they discover just how hard it is to find a job with a criminal record.
Following one poor decision with another, they get involved with a black market con artist and end up in front of Judge Bennett Galloway (Keith David) one more time. Sentencing the men to community service, he sets them free in the hopes they’ll be reformed.
However, Durell’s ex-wife (Regina Hall) is planning a move to Atlanta with their son (C. J. Sanders) unless Durell can come up with $17,000 to pay the rent at her beauty salon. Though the ex-con has a lengthy list of bad behaviors, he is still a concerned dad—-showing up every morning to walk his boy to the bus stop. Promising his son that they won’t be separated, the jobless father looks for a way to make some instant cash.
The answer seems heaven-sent when Durell and LeeJohn follow the amply endowed Tianna Mitchell (Malinda Williams) into a church service. Mistaking communion for a snack, the two men wolf down the religious emblems as Pastor Mitchell (Chi McBride) announces the congregation’s latest fund-raising achievement. And the thought of all those donated dollars sitting in the church safe sparks a devilish idea in the minds of the convicts.
Sneaking into the building after hours, they plan to bequeath the funds to themselves. But the plot is foiled when they discover the members of the financial committee and the choir director (Katt Williams) still in the building. Now saddled with hostages, the gun-wielding bandits’ quick hit-and-run scheme takes an even more unexpected turn when the group of parishioners begins practicing their Christian kindness on the two thieves.
Unfortunately, Momma T’s (Olivia Cole) rebuke for swearing in the sanctuary will come far too late for most families who will have already endured frequent profanities and a sexual hand gesture. Other content that may cause righteous indignation includes some exposed skin, sensual sounds in a massage parlor and a cross-dressing masseuse. Yet the real issue seems to be with the two men who blame their lot in life on their circumstances (undetermined paternity, foster care, and poverty) rather than taking responsibility. Pointing the finger at others every time they make a bad choice, these two felons sink from petty larceny to armed robbery.
The film makes a redemptive effort by trying to address social concerns like broken homes, fatherless children, and the lack of employment. Yet while messages of forgiveness, hope for second chances and taking care of your own might be family friendly, this film likely won’t be the perfect Sunday outing.Starring Ice Cube, Regina Hall, Chi McBride, Loretta Devine, Tracy Morgan.. Running time: 96 minutes. Theatrical release January 10, 2008. Updated May 4, 2009
Rating & Content Info
Why is First Sunday rated PG-13? First Sunday is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for language, some sexual humor, and brief drug references.
Having a hard time going straight, Durell and his friend LeeJohn make poor choices repeatedly, ending up in court where they cause recurring disruptions. Thugs, thieves and the infrequent use of guns are portrayed, as well as social issues like broken homes and arguing couples. A man is punched in the stomach. Some sexual situations, a cross-dresser and sexual jokes are included, along with cleavage-baring outfits. Terms of deity and the depiction of communion are shown in a humorous context. Profanities and a sexual hand gesture are used in the script. Two homeless characters drink from a bagged bottle.
Page last updated May 4, 2009
More parents' guide for First Sunday after the break...
First Sunday Parents' Guide
How does Durell’s attitude change after Momma T’s lecture? What does he learn about taking responsibility?
What kind of example do the parishioners set for the thieves? How do their actions affect Durell and LeeJohn?
What social issues does this film raise? Are there solutions for these problems? If so, who needs to become involved in solving them?
The most recent home video release of First Sunday movie is May 6, 2008. Here are some details…
With this DVD release, you can now watch First Sunday any day of the week. Included on the disc are: an audio commentary and camera wrap speech by writer/director David E. Talbert, deleted scenes (with optional commentary by David E. Talbert), a gag reel, an outtakes reel, a featurette (Hood Robbin’ with the First Sunday Cast & Crew), plus an Almighty Version Fact Track.
First Sunday is available on Blu-ray High-Def as well. In this format the Almighty Version Enhanced Fact Track also features Pop-Up Trivia and Fun Facts.
Related home video titles:
In The Fighting Temptations, Darrin Hill thinks he’s hit the jackpot when he inherits a fortune from an estranged aunt, but to secure the money the non-musician has to lead the Beulah Baptist choir in an upcoming competition. Chi McBride, who plays Pastor Mitchell, took on the role of an airport baggage handler in The Terminal. Actor/song writer Ice Cube can also be seen in the movies Are We There Yet? and Are We Done Yet?