|Index||8 reviews in total|
I loved this film and the all too brief TV series that followed. A dashing hero in the form of gorgeous actor Simon MacCorkindale, a Professor with the unusual ability to be able to transform himself into a various variety of animals in order to fight crime. The story lines were good, the acting superb, the overall show, GREAT! I thoroughly enjoyed this film and the series that ran for a short time and would fully recommend it to all. So if you have the chance to watch this film, go ahead, especially for those Simon MacCorkindale fans. Hope you enjoy this film as much as I did.
Alas, the producers evidently could not afford new first-class special effects every week, so the man-to-animal transformations, though impressive the first time you saw them, were quickly worn out by re-use. But the idea was a good one and I hope that one of these years we'll see a remake.
I remember watching this as a young kid and thinking it was one of the best shows on the earth but so many years on when i ask people about it they cant remember it at all. Just the idea of a man fighting crime by changing into different animals is amazing. The special effects if i remember correctly were really good for around that time and although people were going on about Knight Rider, Street Hawk, Airwolf and the likes this by far outclassed them on all fronts. I'm am glad that i have eventually found it so i can prove to all those people that doubted me it really was a program. Only if it was on general release to buy, if it is out there somewhere to buy could someone point me to a link?
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Jonathon "Manimal" Chase visits Bay City to catch Jack the Ripper. If I remember right Dr Chase found a way to travel in time and inadvertently brought Jack the Ripper to the future. Johnathon's daughter who is estranged from him after the death of her mother is kidnapped by Jack in order to lure chase in to a trap. Johnathon calls on Johnny to help find her it turns out that Dr.Chase learned about Nightman in the future and came to him to use his ability to hear evil thoughts to try and track Jack. The stress of being Kidnapped activates her Latent Manimal ability's and together the three of them fight and defeat Jack the Ripper and return him to his own time.
This NBC TV show was David Letterman's personal favorite while working at
that network back in 1983. He even paid tribute to it with a touching short
film when it was cancelled. Way before its time, only nine episodes were
made which makes this a terrific series to release on video. And check out
the cast in the pilot! Melody Anderson, Ursula Andress, Glynn Turman! Wow!
William Conrad ("Cannon") who was the announcer on the Bullwinkle show was
also the announcer on "Manimal". Manimal...forgotten...but not dead.
I did watch Manimal a couple of years back. And also got the opportunity to do so again only last year when it was repeated on Bravo. I really would love to see someone taking the concept from this series and make it into a single movie instead. If the film was made I would suggest a certain actor who plays Memphis in Happy Feet. Also a strengthening of the female love interest would probably be advised for a 21st century audience. As was said before, I did really enjoy this series. It is quite a pity that it wasn't explored as a concept a little more. What with digital effects being prevalent now, it would be quite a shame if this series was just forgotten about.
Manimal was Indiana Jones meets James Bond meets Monkey Man. It was a totally ridiculous show about some British Professor teaching at New York University while stopping crime and espionage by turning into a monkey, babboon, eagle, wolf, leopard, etc. It was incredibly silly, and it had an interesting cast that made you wonder why they were on such a silly show. It might have succeeded as some kind of Rowan Atkinson comedy. As a serious Science Fiction TV show it was goofy at best, back when special effects on TV were really bad. On the other hand, if someone did it today, with a topical subject (such as British Professor cover for an anti-terrorist secret agent-mutant); it would be worth watching! But back in 1983, crime-fighting monkeys & leopards were too far ahead of their time??
This show didn't last too long, but it had a hillarious plot. I loved the scenes where MacCorkindale would turn into a black panther, because writers felt it was somehow vital to the story!!! But in all seriousness, it wasn't any worse than the prime time soap operas and junk dramas (Hill Street Blues, St. Elsewhere) of the early 80s, and probably deserved more of a chance. Of course an NYU Zoology professor turning into animals was a bit strange (He even turned into a bull once during a rowdy kidnapping) but it was also cool. Melody Anderson and Michael Gregory added some nice mood lifters too.
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