After Craig Jones (Ice Cube)' successful fight against the neighborhood bully Deebo (Tommy Lister Jr.) in the previous film, rumors spread that Deebo will be breaking out of jail soon and will be looking to enact revenge on Craig. As a result, Craig's father Willie (John Witherspoon) decides to have him stay with his uncle Elroy (Don "D.C." Curry) and cousin Day-Day (Mike Epps) in Rancho Cucamonga. Craig agrees to go, albeit reluctantly, as he does not want to leave behind his best friend Smokey, who is currently away at a rehabilitation center in an effort to cure his marijuana addiction. However, it isn't until Craig and Willie are about to leave, they have a brief confrontation with Deebo and his little brother, Tyrone (Sticky Fingaz).
Initially, life with his uncle and cousin seems to be ideal but trouble soon arises. In spite of his family winning the lottery, Day-Day informs Craig that his family is not rich anymore. After taxes were deducted from their winnings, all they were left with was their house and Day-Day's BMW. Because of this, Day-Day still has a job at Pinky's, a local record store.
Day-Day's pregnant ex-girlfriend D'Wana (Tamala Jones) is angry about their breakup and delusional Day-Day is the father. She vandalizes his car, pepper sprays him and threatens to return with her sister, Baby D (Robin Allen).
A family of Mexican thugs, the Joker brothers, live next door and Day-Day and Craig learn about their drug dealing activities from their other neighbor Mrs. Ho-Kym (Amy Hill). Craig notices their sister Karla, but Day-Day warns him to stay away from her because of the tension between them and the Joker brothers. Craig still goes over and talks to Karla. The Joker brothers notice it and sends their bull terrier Chico after Craig. Craig eventually sends Chico away after hitting him with his belt a couple times. Day-Day gets mad at Craig for not listening to him and leaves for work. Later on that day, a mailman comes by and gives Craig a notice for the house being auctioned and he goes to the record store to inform Day-Day.
As Craig arrives at the record store he sees Day-Day being harassed by a customer about the terribleness of a CD he bought at the store. Craig immediately gets tired of the customer and throws him out and tells Day-Day about the letter they received in the mail. As Day-Day begins to freak out, his co-worker Roach (Justin Pierce) answers a phone call from D'wana and Baby D threatening to enter the store and alerts Day-Day. Day-Day then runs to the door and locks it.
When D'wana and Baby D get to the door to find out it's locked, they bang on it demanding entrance. When allowed entrance by Craig. D'wana instantly ask for Day-Day and when denied, she pretends to be looking for a CD. Day-Day is then spotted by D'wana, who said that she needed to go to the bathroom and gets chased out of the back entrance by Baby D and D'wana. The guys later make it back into the store to relax and talk about what's been going on lately. While the fellas are inside the record store, D'wana and Baby D are still outside and still harass Day-Day by throwing a brick through the windshield of his BMW.
Shortly after that situation, the record store owner Pinky returns and mistakes Craig for a thief attempting to rob his store. After fighting Craig, Pinky fires both Day-Day and Roach on the spot.
Having previously received a notice of unpaid taxes, Day-Day is extremely upset with Craig for getting him fired. As they think of a solution and Roach attempts to leave, he slips on his skateboard which is then intentionally run over by the Joker brothers. As they watch, they see the eldest Joker brother removing a suspicious hydraulic pump from the trunk. They decide to find out what is inside the pump, with Roach distracting Chico with a chronic drug hidden in a brownie.
Craig and Day-Day manage to break into the Jokers’ house and Craig discovers the hydraulic pump contains a large amount of drug money and steals some of it. Craig then goes into Karla's bedroom which impresses her and she tells Craig the whole story about her family. The neighborhood was peaceful until her brothers got out of jail by taking over the house and are the direct cause of her parents' mental breakdown. Karla and her parents tried to avoid her brothers by saving money and moving away, hoping it would deter them to remain in jail. However, she mentions that it only encouraged Joker, Lil' Joker and Baby Joker to follow them everywhere they go. After hearing this, Craig is encouraged to restore peace in Rancho Cucamonga and help Karla to put her brothers back in jail.
Day-Day and Roach grow nervous about Craig's prolonged absence and attempt to find him. They knock at the door and are greeted by the Joker brothers who are armed with handguns and automatic rifles and take them hostage after discovering their money has been stolen. When Craig realizes that Day-Day has not returned home, he, Willie, who arrives after receiving a "message" that Craig was in trouble, and Elroy plan a rescue mission. Willie and Elroy takeout Joker's younger brothers, Lil' Joker and Baby Joker.
A fight then ensues between Craig and Joker, while Day-Day and Roach are freed by Elroy. After a scuffle in which Joker aims an automatic rifle at Craig, Day-Day and Roach, he gets knocked out from behind by Deebo, who along with Tyrone, had snuck into Willie's truck after spotting Willie at a restaurant bathroom and tricking him into thinking Craig was in trouble. Tyrone takes Joker's rifle from the unconscious Joker and gives it to Deebo so he can exact revenge on Craig. Fortunately, Chico comes out and attacks Deebo and Tyrone. The police arrive soon after and arrest Deebo, Tyrone and the Joker brothers. This gives Craig the opportunity to make off with the hydraulic pump and the cash, which does not go unnoticed by Joker as he and his brothers, along with Deebo and Tyrone are hauled away.
Craig, Day-Day and Elroy split the money, with Elroy expressing his gratitude to Craig, as Craig and Willie depart back to South Central. As they prepare to leave, he spots D'wana pulling up to Day-Day's BMW, and sees Baby D get out and toss a brick through the rear window and the two speed off laughing.Ice Cube as Craig Jones
Mike Epps as Daymond "Day-Day" Jones
Justin Pierce as Roach
John Witherspoon as Mr. Willie Jones
Don "D.C." Curry as Uncle Elroy Jones
Tommy Lister Jr. as Deebo
Jacob Vargas as Joker
Lisa Rodríguez as Karla
Tamala Jones as D'Wana
Clifton Powell as Pinky
Kym Whitley as Auntie Suga
Sticky Fingaz as Tyrone
Lobo Sebastian as Lil' Joker
Rolando Molina as Baby Joker
Amy Hill as Mrs. Ho-Kym
Robin Allen as Baby D
Michael Blackson as Angry African Man Customer
Nicole Lydy as Ashley Nicole
The film's soundtrack, which featured appearances from Aaliyah, Eminem, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Ice Cube, N.W.A., Snoop Dogg, Wu-Tang Clan, and Wyclef Jean, peaked at number five on the R&B/Hip-Hop charts, and nineteen on the Billboard 200 in 2000.
In the United States, the film was released on Wednesday, January 12, 2000.
Next Friday was released on DVD format on June 6, 2000. The single disc DVD contains a theatrical trailer, music videos, a "making of..." featurette, behind the scenes footage, and an alternate ending as well as cast and crew information.
Next Friday grossed $14,465,156 on its opening weekend in 1,103 theaters, averaging $13,114 per theater. The film grossed $57,328,603 in North America and $2,498,725 in the foreign box office to earn a total $59,827,328 worldwide. The film is the most successful in the franchise.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a 20% approval rating based on 64 reviews and an average rating of 4/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Next Friday lacks the fun of the original Friday. The movie is messy and plotless and relies on unfunny vulgar gags". On Metacritic, the film has received a score of 41 based on 25 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".2000 MTV Movie Awards
Best Comedic Performance — Ice Cube (nominated)