In “A Day Late and a Dollar Short,” when irascible matriarch Viola Price learns that her next asthma attack will likely kill her, she is determined to fix her fractured family before she leaves this world, from her relationship with her husband to the lives of her four children and grandchildren. While on this quest, she must contend with sibling rivalry, teen pregnancy and drug addiction – and that is only one child. Additionally, her jailbird son needs to learn how to be a better father, her granddaughter is in bigger trouble than her daughter is willing to admit and Viola’s estranged husband needs saving from his scheming younger girlfriend.


“A Day Late and a Dollar Short” is where Terry McMillan shows the world that Tyler Perry is a hack. While using several of the same conceits, you never stop believing that Goldberg is a real mother with kids that are so close to losing her forever. There are a ton of stereotypes at play, but none of them are played up for laughs or melodrama. Every aspect of their struggle feels real and you find yourself rooting for Goldberg at every turn.

Whoopi Goldberg and Ving Rhames are incredible together. While Rhames is trying to deal with his scheming girlfriend, Goldberg doesn’t want her illness to be the crutch that forces them back together. There’s not an aspect of any Goldberg relationship in this dramatic adaptation that feels staged. The American audience has missed the careful touch of a writer like Terry McMillan for far too long. I’m glad that an organization like Lifetime is willing to give her more work.

The DVD comes with no special features. The A/V Quality is on par with recent TV movies. The transfer works enough. Plus, you have a Dolby track that breaks apart the audio channels when people start talking over each other. In the end, I’d recommend a purchase to the curious.

RELEASE DATE: 07/15/2014

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