Monday, December 7, 2009
Addams Family Values (1993)
Finals are almost over and a childhood favorite is revisited (Thanks Wal-Mart for finally getting it).
Ok, before you scoff, Addams Family Values is actually a good movie. It's not a Spice World-like guilty pleasure, it's sincerely a good film.
The film doesn't have much of a plot, though. Morticia (Angelica Huston) and Gomez (Raul Julia) have recently added Baby Pubert to the Addams clan. Of course, Wednesday (Christina Ricci) and Pugsley (Kid I've never heard of and never have since) attempt to kill the little thing until their parents hire Nanny Debby (Joan Cusack) who is really a black widow killer out to get Uncle Fester (Christopher Lloyd)'s vast fortune.
The film has to tread the line between camp and being serious enough to where the film doesn't come across as self-aware smugness, and for the most part it works, in part because of the casting. Let's get this out of the way, Christina Ricci is awesome beyond belief in this movie. It would have been so easy for a child actor to attempt to turn Wednesday's deadpan delivery into something overly sassy, but Ricci nails it by actually acting (just watch her performances in the play within the film to see how different she makes the two Wednesdays). Also, Joan Cusack is a wonderful addition to the film as the crazed murderess, making line after line hilarious and quotable. Her monologue at the end of the film about killing her previous husbands is brilliant (Just watch the many copycats on Youtube to gain an appreciation for the great Miss Cusack). The rest of the cast is great as well, but Ricci and Cusack OWN the film.
The script is great as well, offering great line after great macabre line. Sometimes it can be a bit too much, but overall the script is smarter than you would expect.
I know I've seen the first film, but I don't remember much of it and I've heard a lot of people say that this film is far superior, so I would definitely recommend this. I know it's not like the usual fare for this blog, but it's just such a fun film.