Monday, December 2, 2013

792. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)


Running Time: 103 minutes
Directed By: Robert Zemeckis
Written By: Jeffrey Price, Peter S. Seaman, from the novel Who Censored Roger Rabbit? by Gary K. Wolf
Main Cast: Bob Hoskins, Christopher Lloyd, Joanna Cassidy; (voices): Charles Fleischer, Kathleen Turner
Click here to view the trailer

ANIMATION MEETS REALITY

In case this entry didn't tip you off, I've decided to continue moving chronologically past the 90s and through the 80s as well. I realize we're not chronologically back to 1988 yet, but this was streaming and my wife wanted to watch it, so here we are.


The film is probably unlike anything you've ever seen, as it expertly blends animation and live action seamlessly. The film stars Bob Hoskins as Eddie Valiant, a private detective who's been hired by Maroon Cartoon Studios, to find out if Jessica Rabbit (voiced by Turner), wife of A-list toon Roger Rabbit (voiced by Fleischer), is cheating on him. It doesn't take long for Eddie to snap a few risque photos of Jessice with Marvin Acme ("risque" in Toon Town; in fact, the two are just seen playing patty cake together) and confirm Roger's suspicion, breaking his heart. The next day, Marvin Acme (of cartoon's famous Acme products) is found dead and all fingers point to Roger. However, Eddie has different suspicions, which are confirmed after he talks to Roger and realizes that the white rabbit is innocent. Meanwhile, Judge Doom is trying to rule Toontown with an iron fist and is rallying for Roger's immediate execution, as he's developed the only way possible to kill a toon. The film blends elements of film noir and of course, animation to create a movie that you won't soon forget. The really fun part, though, is spotting all the toons: everyone from Loony Tunes characters to Disney characters make cameo appearances.


Despite the fact that the film WILL stick with you and you won't soon forget it, it still is something that didn't leave me as giddy as I'd have been if I had seen it at a younger age. Sure, it's cute and sometimes funny, but for me - a twenty nine year old male - it just doesn't hold up and ultimately, I was waiting for this to be over, more than I was wanting it to last longer. The film tries very hard to appeal to both adults and children and succeeds on some levels, but I think it's going to be a case by case basis, as to whether or not the grown ups are going to like it. I, for one, could've done with it's exclusion, but that's just me. On the other hand, I totally get WHY it was included and am more than willing to admit that it's expertly done. In a day when CGI and 3D are run of the mill, it's really hard to see any flaws with this animation work and it's interaction with live action subjects. I think I've said my peace on this one, so lets call that a short review.



RATING: 5.5/10  Better than average, but not by much. Like I said, don't take my griping to heart. I get it if you love it and I certainly wouldn't detract anyone from seeing this for the first time.

MOVIES WATCHED: 773
MOVIES LEFT TO WATCH: 228

December 2, 2013  6:24pm

4 comments:

  1. I saw this in the theaters as a kid and loved it, and still enjoy revisiting it now. I thought the way the toon world and normal world worked together was really clever. I'm sure I would like it as much watching it for the first time as an adult, though.

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    1. I just didn't get that "be a kid again" feeling from it, like I did with "Toy Story" and even "Babe" earlier this season. Glad it did something for you though!

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  2. I'd say worth it's place due to it's (at the time) ground breaking methods, which even today stand up quite well. Really enjoyed it at the time and still like to think I like it.. but when the choice comes one day "I can watch Roger Rabbit, again, or I could.... ". Sorry Roger, you are destined to become on of those well remembered films you no longer deliberately watch, but catch your attention for 20 mins, or the next ad break, when you are browsing tv channels.
    Oh dear, that sounds more dismissive than I want it to..

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    Replies
    1. I'm not even sure I'd give it the 20 mins. in between ad breaks...

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SINS OF OMISSION - Entry #65: Les nuits de la pleine lune/Full Moon in Paris (1984)

Running Time: 100 minutes Directed By: Eric Rohmer Written By: Eric Rohmer Main Cast: Pascale Ogier, Tcheky Karyo, Fabrice Luchini,...