|Index||5 reviews in total|
American-International cancelled its plans to widely market and release this
movie after disasterous test runs - a wise plan, but upon seeing the movie
you have to wonder why they even bothered with test runs. I have no idea how
the tale of a boxing kangaroo played in the original Paul Gallico novel, but
nothing works about it translated into a movie. Kids won't like it - they
will be confused half the time with details like sports corruption and
boxing rules/regulations, and the other half of the time they'll be finding
the events remarkably unfunny and unengaging. Adults will be finding the
events remarkably unfunny and unengaging *all* the time!
It's not just the script that's bad. Though the movie had something of a budget, the production looks remarkably cheap and tacky. Obviously, that includes the kangaroo animatronic costume, which looks so phony that even a two year-old will recognize it's a man in a costume. Though there are also things like sets that look like, well, SETS, and dirty and unfocused cinematography.
Nobody behind the scenes seems to have put any heart and passion in the production, and it's no wonder the actors are dragged down with it. Gould (who further killed his career with this movie) does put in some effort despite the fact you can see in his eyes that he knows he's in a stinker, but his broad performance ends up adding to the feeling the movie is mocking the viewer. At least it is a performance; Robert Mitchum doesn't even TRY putting in any effort in his scenes (which were clearly knocked off in a couple of days at most!)
Still, the movie clearly could have been worse. That's because there are signs that the movie was originally LONGER! One example: take the scene where the mobsters are attempting to jump the kangaroo for the first time - one of them utters "This time we'll...." - indicating there was originally another scene earlier when they tried to get the kangaroo. Think about it: somewhere in some vault, there exists a longer version of this movie! Scary!
Extremely bad, deservedly one of the biggest financial disasters of the
decade. There was little potential in a supposed feel-good kiddie movie
about a boxing kangaroo trying to beat the human world champion, but it
didn't have to be this bad. For instance, they could have trained a real
kangaroo instead of using a ham actor in a cheap, heavy, molting kangaroo
suit that bears no resemblance to an animal, even with the animatronic
facial expressions. And if you've ever wondered why Elliot Gould's career
tanked in the late seventies, this is a big reason. He tries to make up
the bad kangaroo by hamming it up and desperately trying to be cute. And
they didn't have to have such an annoying, sexist romance subplot
Incredibly bad, but not enjoyably bad like an Ed Wood film. For serious Bad Film buffs only.
This film is bad, yes, but had the producers used a REAL KANGAROO, it would have killed the actor it was boxing with. I am an Australian and I have seen two seven foot tall male 'Roos fighting each other, it is not a pretty sight as the object is for one or the other to kill it's opponent,(this is there way of securing the herd of females) and there are incidents where someone has boxed a kangaroo, and been injured or killed, so when you see a kangaroo on TV or Film it is likely to be a female, or Animated, as it is a good idea not to injure actors (they might be annoyed at losing the ability to breath). There is a strange idea that Australian animals are cute and cuddly, that is false, many are dangerous (10 of the 12 most deadliest snakes live here)and most are just plain ugly (Koalas are as soft as steal wool). So if you come to Australia BE CAREFULL!!!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A small-time talent agent discovers an amazing boxing kangaroo and
figures to use it as his stepping-stone into the big time.
It's not just the script that's bad. Though the movie had something of a budget, the production looks remarkably cheap and tacky. Editing looks like it was done with a chainsaw, poor direction and rotten acting. This is an almost laughable family film. Vestron Video was planning to release this on VHS, but they decided not to as of the corny jokes and punches. This is a horrible rip-off of Rocky Balboa. Lots of laughable bad dialogue. Cheap special effects un-like Walt Disney movies. If this is your kind of movie, you should then enjoy this.
I was fortunate as a 12-year old to see this film at Radio City Music
Hall, as one of the last regular engagements before the Music Hall
converted to a concert hall. I don't remember much about the film and
won't try and defend it, but it was exciting to see it in the context
of a Radio City presentation, complete with Rockettes and organ and
It's a shame that there haven't been more films shown on that great and grand screen. I don't know why films like TITANIC and THE DARK KNIGHT and WALL-E wouldn't have worked a treat there for short runs at the start of their lives.
It is a blessing that the theatre is intact and still gloriously vibrant and active. What a joy to experience, even peripherally, the thrill that our parents and grandparents felt when going to the movies.
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