Viewers beware: You’re in for a trip with this looney movie

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Viewers beware: You’re in for a trip with this looney movie

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I’ve never tried LSD.
But I have a sneaking suspicion that the effects of the drug would be remarkably similar to watching the movie “Looney Tunes: Back in Action,” because I don’t quite trust my eyes or mind anymore.

 
“Back in Action,” which came out in 2003, hasn’t aged quite as gracefully as its predecessors, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” or “Space Jam.” It is barely able to retain the entertainment factor that the original Looney Tunes brought back in the day.

 
Nevertheless, it still managed to pack a star-studded cast into one of the weirdest things I’ve ever had to force myself to watch. At first it was for nostalgia, I told myself. Later I finished it out of sheer determination, because unless he’s starring in the “Mummy” franchise, Brendan Fraser should probably stay out of acting for a while.

 
From what I was able to gather from the melted ruins of my mind, the basic plot of the movie is that the main character D.J., played by Fraser, is trying to find the Blue Monkey Diamond with the help of his female companion, Kate Haughton, played by Jenna Elfman (“Dharma and Greg”). Helping out along the way are Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, both voiced by Joe Alaskey (“Looney Tunes”), who made me cry on the inside.

 
Set out to stop them is acclaimed comedy genius Steve Martin, seen here in this movie slumming it with the rest of Hollywood’s comedic refuse. The only possible reason that I can think of why he’d be in this film was if someone was holding his family hostage and this was the ransom demand.

 
The rest of the cast is rounded out by every actor Warner Brothers was able to throw a few dollars at. In addition to Fraser, Elfman and Martin, this movie also managed to get Heather Locklear (“Melrose Place”), Joan Cusack (“Shameless”), Timothy Dalton (“James Bond”), Ron Perlman (“Hellboy”), Matthew Lillard (“Scooby Doo”), Billy West (“Futurama”) and so on.

 
It was actually more surprising to see who they didn’t manage to get into this movie than whom they actually did. But as the old proverb says, “Too many cooks spoil the broth.” This movie came out only seven years after “Space Jam,” and maybe the studio was hoping that the people who loved the first movie would love the second as well.

 
But the thrill that “Space Jam” had when they combined animation and real life footage just wasn’t the same. I know I’m a little young to be pulling out the nostalgia card, but this movie just wasn’t made the way that they used to be.

 
Instead of the thrill, we get a slapstick movie that wouldn’t amuse my six-year-old brother, filled with a bunch of Easter eggs and inside jokes about the early Looney Tunes that wouldn’t amuse my grandparents. That isn’t to say that the movie is devoid of humor, but if this movie’s jokes were William Tell, they would have shot their sons in the eye.

 
It actually feels a little gratifying to know that of the $80 million that they spent on this, they only made $68.5 million back. I’m not trying to devalue the work that that went into this craptastic viewing experience, but I am saying Hollywood can stop funding stupid movie ideas any day now. Here’s to looking at you, Michael Bay and the “Transformers” franchise.

 
I am also mildly concerned that this movie is cursed. Not in the sense that I’ll be killed by something crawling out of my screen within the week, but in the sense that this movie was the last effort of the composer Jerry Goldsmith before he died. Sure, the man was 75 years old and had colon cancer, but still.

 
After watching this movie, I wish with all my heart that the studios hadn’t decided to make this animated monstrosity of a film. It doesn’t hold up in the way that “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” did, and the fact that I’m only really hearing about it 14 years after its release does not say good things about it.

 
So for now, I’m going to stay away from televisions in case I am actually cursed, and I’m going to stay away from nostalgia. And as all the classics went, “Th-Th-Th-That’s All Folks.”

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