Every Madea Movie Ranked From Worst To Best (Including Homecoming)

Tyler Perry's popular Madea character is making her return in Netflix's A Madea Homecoming, marking the character's twelfth appearance in the Madea film franchise. After initially ending the franchise with 2019's A Madea Family Funeral, Perry has revived his successful comedy film series on Netflix. The transition from the big screen to streaming is an interesting turn for Perry to take but may prove quite successful for his Madea brand, and any potential sequels to follow A Madea Homecoming.

Tyler Perry made his first appearance as the titular character in his 1999 play I Can Do Bad All By Myself, which would later receive a filmed adaptation, also written and directed by Perry. Madea made her first big-screen appearance in the 2005 film Diary of a Mad Black Woman, which was Tyler Perry's debut feature as a director. Since then, the franchise has remained consistently successful at the box office, spawning many sequels both featuring and starring Perry's character, as Perry has created his own cinematic universe around the character.

Related: The Most Brutal Reviews Of Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral

With A Madea Homecoming, Perry brings the franchise back after claiming to be retiring the character a few years prior. In the latest Madea film, the titular character welcomes her family who have come to town to celebrate the graduation of her great-grandson when some family secrets arise and threaten this joyous celebration. With 12 films now under the belt of the Madea cinematic universe, here is a ranking of all 12 features from worst to best.

In the time of year that everyone once more watches films such as The Polar Express, or debates whether or not Die Hard is a Christmas movie, Tyler Perry decided to bring his Madea character into the fray with a Christmas movie that acts almost like a Madea Christmas special rather than a feature film for the big screen. Tyler Perry tries to surprisingly bring some substance to A Madea Christmas with some interesting commentary on religion in the public sphere, but it never really comes together in what feels like a lazy attempt to cash in on the holiday season rather than make an entertaining and clever comedy, which Perry is more than capable of doing, especially with this character. Perry gives his all as Madea, but its lower budget really shows and makes the film feel more fit for the Hallmark Channel than a movie theater.

Tyler Perry's transition from actor to director was made with Diary of a Mad Black Woman, a film with a few decent laughs, but the ultimate lack of the Madea character is sorely felt, and really weighs the film down. Kimberly Elise's Helen is an uncompelling protagonist, and the story comes off more as a generic melodrama than it really does a hilarious comedy. Perry's debut film is well-intentioned but it does very much feel like a debut feature, and Madea taking a backseat through much of the story hurts the film from a comedic standpoint.

A Madea Family Funeral initially ended the Madea franchise before Perry decided to bring the character back with A Madea Homecoming. And thankfully that was the case because A Madea Family Funeral doesn't have the feel of a conclusion to a franchise and is a rather bland installment. It goes through the usual motions of a Madea film with an infidelity plot that feels recycled from other entries and doesn't add anything new or inventive to the formula. And as an ending to Tyler Perry's Madea franchise, it's lackluster to say the least.

Related: Madea Homecoming's Mrs. Brown's Boys Crossover Explained: Why Did It Happen?

Madea's Family Reunion is this low on the list for the simple reason that it's the most forgettable of the series. It offers an interesting enough premise of Madea being ordered to court to become the guardian of a rebellious teen, but the end result just isn't particularly engaging or all that funny. It's a very middle-of-the-road entry that gets lost in the shuffle of the Madea formula and has trouble standing out from the pack.

Bounce - Meet The Browns

Much like Diary of a Mad Black Woman, Madea herself has very little screen time in Meet the Browns, resulting in another film that can't quite balance its genres properly. Actor Angela Bassett does a terrific job in the lead role of Brenda Brown and slightly elevates the standard melodrama material given to her. Past that, the romance is serviceable but isn't enough to hold the film together, as it comes off more like a feature-length pilot for the House of Payne spin-off series that launched only a year later.

The follow-up to the successful Boo! A Madea Halloween, this entry in the Madea series follows a similar formula to that of its predecessor. Many of the jokes feel recycled from the previous entry, and Tyler Perry's Brian is a rather dull lead to follow. This sequel feels as though it's cashing in on the previous film's success rather than carving its own path, but it's far from the most boring entry and does contain a few laughs here and there.

While not one of the better entries in the series, Madea's Big Happy Family is maybe the most under-appreciated. Unlike other films in the series, this one balances both the more dramatic elements with the comedy quite impressively, with a plot that revolves around a cancer diagnosis. However, the film still has the wild antics that audiences come to a Madea movie for. It doesn't offer as much consistent entertainment nor as many laughs as other entries, but it stands on its own shoulders just fine with perhaps the most well-balanced entry in terms of tone.

Related: Boo 2! A Madea Halloween's Twist Ending Explained

Tyler Perry's first attempt at a Halloween-themed Madea entry delivers exactly what one would want from this type of film. It's a silly Halloween romp with all the quippy banter and ridiculous gags that a fan of the series could ask for. Perry's cast of eclectic characters get a ton of solid banter, and the cast is all obviously having a ton of fun, which can become quite infectious. By far one of the funnier entries in the series to date.

Tyler Perry and Eugene Levy carry Madea's Witness Protection on their backs, both turning in hilarious and likable performances in an enjoyable franchise entry. The plot is certainly one of the sillier set-ups of the franchise, with a Wall Street banker and his family being shipped down to Madea's home as a form of witness protection from the mob, but with the Madea films, the sillier they are, the more enjoyable they tend to be for the most part. In terms of laughs, Madea's Witness Protection is by far one of the funnier entries and is sure to satisfy that particular craving for Tyler Perry's signature brand of humor.

Making up for the disappointing conclusion that was A Madea Family Funeral, Tyler Perry brings Madea back in full swing with A Madea Homecoming, with all of Tyler Perry's returning Madea characters getting up to their normal antics but with a nice beating heart at its center that brings it together. The running theme of acceptance for one's true self is prevalent in a likable cast of charming characters, and the film's melodrama is far more compelling than in most entries, making it one of the more entertaining franchise offerings to date, and a nice return to form for the series.

Madea Goes to Jail is, in many ways, the funniest film in the Madea franchise. Picking up from the hilarious cliffhanger of Meet the Browns, this is a fast-paced, enjoyable comedy in its own right, and one of Perry's better films in general. Keisha Knight Pulliam's Candace, a young prostitute and former drug addict, makes for an interesting contrast to Perry's Madea character, and the two work off of each other quite well. It's quite a hilarious entry but still manages to get in a solid message, as Perry's best films always do.

Related: The Haves And Have Nots Updates: Will Tyler Perry's Soap Return For Season 9?

Actor Taraji P. Henson lights up the screen in I Can Do Bad All By Myself, the film that perfected the dramatic tones of the Madea franchise and manages to tell a compelling and heavy story while still offering some decent laughs, despite an extreme lack of Perry as Madea. Henson's April is a flawed but incredibly compelling lead, and her arc is by far the most interesting in the franchise, giving this entry to most dramatic weight and overall impact by the end. It may not be the funniest entry, but this is the most memorable and distinctive work of Perry's directorial career, as well as the best entry in the franchise to date.

Next: Is A Madea Homecoming The Last One? Will There Be Another Madea Movie?



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