I went to see Tyler Perry’s The Single Moms Club because I was a single mom. Still am, technically, but my child is all grown up and out of the house.
Still, I remember what it was like. And I wanted to see what insights the movie had to offer. Tyler Perry gets us-and he cares. Also, he’s funny.
I liked The Single Moms Club even though some of the solutions seemed a little too easy; all five mothers were matched up with good men by the time the credits rolled. Still, many of the common problems of single mothers were dealt with in the film.
I remember when I was raising my child alone, the three little words I most wanted to hear were “I’ll help you.” One of the women in the movie says almost exactly those words.
I Could Relate
I probably identified most with Hillary (Amy Smart), the confused and overwhelmed blonde who couldn’t manage her life, make a decision, or get her baby to stop crying. And I don’t know if it’s a stereotype or not, but I love strong, funny black women who tell it like it is, and there was one in the story, Lytia (Cocoa Brown). She got Hillary’s three children under control in about three minutes, and Hillary too.
Lytia turned out to have a moving story. She had three children at home and two in prison. Her adorable little boy, Hakim, never got to have fun because she was trying so hard to keep him in school.
The beautiful Esperanza (Zulay Henao) had a daughter, pre-teen Veronica, who at first loved her dad more because he gave her everything.
Blonde business woman Jan (Wendi McLendon-Covey) was professional but clueless with men and, more importantly, with raising her pre-teen daughter.
The Single Moms Club was composed of these women, plus African-American May, a writer raising a little boy. They met when their children’s school needed them to organize a fund-raiser. They quickly saw how their problems were, if not the same, very similar, and they joined together to help each other. May was inspired to write about their club, and out of it came a published book.
Racial Differences Not Ignored
At first, there was some tension. The snobbish publishing executive thought the waitress with a mouth was a little too . . .
“Black?” Somebody filled in. A couple more bumps like that and then they were all friends. Again, a little too easy. But I didn’t care. All the women were likable, and I was glad they got together.
There were funny moments, and to me the best line came when Jan asked Lytia, whose daughter’s name was Roshanna, “Why did you name your daughter after a Jewish holiday?”
Another of the women explained that the holiday is Rosh Hashanah.
Tyler Perry as TK is nice, nice, nice-the single mom’s dream. He gets together with May (no interracial romance in the movie). When TK takes his two sons and May’s boy fishing, you just know everything’s going to be all right.
In fact, all the men are nice.
It’s a little bit of a fiction, but there’s reality too. The women’s problems are real-with money, ex-husbands, jobs, dating, and raising children alone.
I know that The Single Moms Club has received mostly negative reviews, but I enjoyed it. If you’re a single mother, I think you will too. I came out of the theater thinking, “I love Tyler Perry.”