Review: From Queens to Zamunda, a new legacy

A long-awaited sequel for a beloved classic


Inspired by the 1988 classic “Coming to America 2,” directed by Craig Brewer, details the aftermath since the first movie first came out more than 30 years ago. (Photo via Paramount Pictures)

Inspired by the movie that originally came out in 1988, ”Coming to America 2” had a revolutionary launch similar to 2018’s “Black Panther.”Released on March 5 on Amazon Prime Video, it is the sequel to a beloved classic in American culture. 

The film is directed by Craig Brewer, a close friend of the film’s star actor Eddie Murphy. The story follows the story of Akeem portrayed by Murphy, the former prince in the first movie who is now the king of the fictional kingdom of Zamunda in Africa from the first movie. 

In the film, King Akeem is struggling with the idea that he may need an heir to the throne but a problem occurs. The king has only had daughters with his wife Queen Lisa, three to be exact, and a male must be the heir to the throne as is tradition.

Surprisingly enough, Akeem’s servant and counterpart Semmi actually made sure Akeem had a son off-camera in the first movie when Akeem was looking for a wife. Akeem has a one-night stand and has a son located in Queens where the first movie took place.

Now that Akeem knows of his son he must travel back to America in order to retrieve his son and groom him to eventually take his place on the throne one day. 

The film is a blast from the past in a way as most of the main characters in the previous film reprise their roles such as Shari Headly who plays Lisa, Arsenio Hall who plays multiple characters and James Earl Jones who plays Akeem’s dying father and former king in the previous film.

The film also has a lot of new faces such as Leslie Jones, Wesley Snipes, Teyana Taylor, Jermain Fowler, Tracey Morgan, and others.

The cinematic project is masterful as the movie captures a lot of perceived Ethiopian culture that is vibrant and pleasing as black wealth is shown greatly in the film.

As the film progresses beloved characters from the original film such as Randy Watson, the three barbers, and Reverend Brown make an appearance.

Sequels are usually met with a bunch of criticism but this film was something fans have wanted for more than 30 years as the first film inspired costumes and party ideas around the country.    

The movie itself is good. It was a different way to expand a story most people felt couldn’t be expanded. The movie was great with its cameos as well as through the film a lot of known black actors and actresses make their appearance. 

“Coming to America 2” is available for streaming now for free with a subscription to Amazon’s Prime Video format. Watch the trailer here