Herbie, the Volkswagen Beetle with a mind of its own, is racing in the Monte Carlo Rally. Unbeknownst to Herbie's driver, thieves have hidden a cache of stolen diamonds in Herbie's gas tank, and are now trying to get them back.
Lord Southmere escapes from China with a microfilm of the formula for the mysterious "Lotus X", and is captured by Chinese spies who have been instructed to retrieve the microfilm from him.... See full summary »
The California Atoms are in last place with no hope of moving up. But by switching the mule from team mascot to team member, (He can kick 100 yard field goals!) they start winning, and move... See full summary »
In this comedy, Peter Ustinov is the famous pirate's ghost that returns to our time. Blackbeard has been cursed by his last wife who was a notorious witch, so that he will never die. The ... See full summary »
Alonzo Hawk is a mean-spirited property developer who has bought several blocks of land in the downtown district in order to build a gigantic shopping mall. There is one problem however; an elderly widow named Steinmetz won't sell the one remaining lot that Hawk needs to proceed with his scheme. So he resorts to all manner of chicanery, legal or otherwise, to get it. Fortunately, the widow Steinmetz has an ace up her sleeve in the form of Herbie, the miraculous Volkswagen. Written by
The first Disney Herbie movie not to feature the phrase 'Love Bug' in the title though it was part of taglines for the film which read: "'The Love Bug's back doin' his thing!" and "'The Love Bug's back doin' in a new hilarious adventure!". See more »
When Herbie takes Mrs. Steinmetz up the window washing elevator, the alignment of the elevator with the external vertical building columns changes between the close-up and wide angle shots as it ascends. See more »
The much-loved original is still hailed as one of the better live-action Disney films so I'm wondering why it took them a comparatively long time to throw out a sequel. However, it would appear that despite the long gestation that someone forgot to include pretty much anything that made "The Love Bug" such a smash. That's not to say that this is entirely worthless but it is a disappointment when you consider it next to its older brother.
Property developer Alonzo Hawk (Keenan Wynn) is preparing to construct a huge tower overlooking San Fransisco but his diggers are kept back by the last remaining resident still on the plot. Mrs Steinmetz (Helen Hayes) lives in an old fire station with Nicole Harris (Stephanie Powers) and they vigorously fight against Hawk and his team of crooked lawyers trying to get them out of the way. But when Hawks hoodwinks his naive nephew Willoughby Whitfield (Ken Berry) into trying to get Mrs Steinmetz to move, he hadn't reckoned on the heart and soul of Herbie - the infamous Volkswagen Beetle with a mind of its own - getting in the way as well.
In "The Love Bug", Herbie was a racer with numerous tricks up his sleeve but in "Herbie Rides Again", he's now some crime-fighting vigilante on four wheels. The stuff he gets up to - driving up sheer cliff faces or climbing the Golden Gate Bridge - never feels believable and as a result, the car loses some of its charm and personality in the process. Notice how in the poster, they've given Herbie eyes instead of headlights. The other thing that weakens the film is that Powers, Berry and Hayes are simply not as interesting as the stars of the first film
in fact, the funniest and most entertaining person is actually the
baddie. Wynn has the best lines and scenes - the dream sequence he has is probably the highlight of the film - but what's the point if you're supposed to root for the others?
It feels wrong to criticise such a kiddie friendly movie but I'm afraid "Herbie Rides Again" simply isn't as good as its predecessor. It's sillier and not as funny, littered with laboured performances from the protagonists and completely at odds with the story that went before it. The first film didn't rely on model shots or crude blue-screen effects and it was much more enjoyable. I realise that there might not have been much mileage in a car that thinks for itself plot wise but by turning Herbie into a crusader for the little people in the face of corporate greed, it made what was always slightly silly completely ridiculous. Stick with "The Love Bug" instead of this stalling sequel because it's more fun, more enjoyable and didn't feel like it lasted an age - I cannot recall 88 minutes feeling like such a long time.
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