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For that matter, neither have Murphy and Hall. Every once in a while they bury themselves beneath some marvelous Rick Baker makeup to do unexpected character bits. Murphy is seen -- more accurately, unseen -- as a half-senile barber, a trashed rock singer and, most remarkably, a crotchety old Jewish gentleman. Hall also does a barber, as well as a Gospel preacher and what the credits call an "Extremely Ugly Girl." Their characterizations are energetic and expert. But they are never truly funny. As with everything else in the film, the filmmakers seem to have shot the first draft of these tantalizing scenes and printed the first takes.
Finally, Coming to America seems to be more career move than movie. After the raucousness of Beverly Hills Cop II and the raunchiness of Eddie Murphy Raw, the star apparently wants to assert his claim on the currently vacant title of America's Sweetheart. His aspirations must be bigger and badder than that. We want -- may actually need -- something more from this gifted man than Eddie Murphy Tame.