Beauty Shop is not a comedy more than a happening. Yes, there are way too many secondary plots and characters but all in all it is an enjoyable little movie. Queen Latifah rules as a single mom who opens her own beauty salon and tries to survive the experience, some of the weird locals and employees, and dirty tricks from her former boss, Jorge, played by Kevin Bacon.
This comedy features a who's who of Black cinema, including Della Reese, stand-up Sheryl Underwood, Mena Suvari, Djimon Hounsou (Constantine) as the beefcake musician who lives upstairs from the beauty salon, and Cosby Show kid Keshia Knight Pulliam. It is more or less held together by the thin threads of sequence and a radio call in show the girls like to listen to.
Alicia Silverstone is great as the white southern girl trying to get accepted in an all-Black environment. She is the source of much comic relief in Beauty Shop, a movie that has many funny moments but seems to lack direction.
The secondary plot about Jorge sending the inspector to the salon and pays to have it ransacked does not really go anywhere and distracts from the core of the movie which is the interaction between the various employees of the hair place, the weird locals like the fish lady and the booty-filming kid, and the out of place white folk customers like the very enjoyable Andie McDowell.
There is also another secondary plot having to do with Darlene (Pulliam) trying to find herself and getting in trouble.
The repartee in this almost comedy is funny and quick as the staff likes to play the numbers on each other. Although it is unfortunate the story is not more focused than it could have been, Beauty Shop is still a fun little movie especially because of the always enjoyable and funny Queen Latifah.. Forgettable, yes, but enjoyable.
Extras include Beauty Shop: Inside the Style, a gag reel, and selected scenes featuring commentary by director Billy Woodruff.