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This is going to sound crazy to most of you, but here it goes. Ladybugs is one of a handful of films that made me want to be a film maker. Seriously! I was 14 when I saw Ladybugs for the first time on video. Once I watched it, I watched it again. Something about the movie interested me to be a storyteller myself. The direction, the story, even the location of the film inspired me to start writing, acting, and begin taking film classes. Something about this feel good movie made me want to make movies myself. At the time, Jonathan Brandis just started acting himself. HE had done the Never Ending Story a few years before and was an up and coming actor. A month ago, Jonathan Brandis was found dead in his LA apartment. Though I never met the man, nor worked on any of his films, his "legacy" if you can call it that, had left a mark. His talents end on such a short note, it is unfair that his best work will never be seen. Even though he has left some good and bad movies behind, I recall most of his work as work of talent and joy.
Ladybugs is a movie you could go past, without realizing how funny it really is. A small cinema release in December of 92, it had. When it came around to watching it, in late 95, I'm glad I zoomed in on it. As always in Rodney's Dangerfield's movies, like Robin Williams adds his own lines, he adds his own jokes, and they go off like firecrackers. I don't think there's anything I haven't found funny from Dangerfield. Here in one of his funniest comedies, a lighthearted one, compared to the normal ones he did, and that wasn't many, he coaches a hopeless soccer team of young girls, one of them happening to his beautiful boss's daughter, Kimberly. And if Chester (Dangerfield) produces a winning team he'll be put in for a promotion, so it's a bit of a..kissing. Rodney says a great one liner about balls that cracked me up. I never realized how funny this movie would be. Chester who's met a new woman, and vying for the acceptance of her son (this happens to all stepdads and mothers) he really needs this promotion. He cons the son (late heart throb Jonathan Brandis) a skilled soccer player into coaching this pathetic girls soccer team. Only one catch, the son must dress like a girl. At first, averse to the idea, he's soon in a dress and wig, and Martha is born. Another complication, Martha falls for Kimberly. Certain predicaments provide laughs, like when all the girls are invited back to Kimberly's place as they are skinny dipping, or when Martha's changing into a dress, in certain places, like female washrooms or dressing stalls, or even throttling a punching ball in front of stunned onlookers. Or when Kimberly shows up unannounced at Martha's, where Brandis is forever changing, as Rodney and his much better half return home. Even Rodney, who makes one hell of an ugly woman, has to pose as a female to get Martha out of Kimberly's house. Jackee' (Rodney's work colleague) is a hoot too, providing the laughs with after remarks aimed at Rodney. Nancy Parsons, the crazed coach of the other girl soccer team who are miles and miles better, very much resembles characteristics of her Ball breaker character from her Porky's days. Rodney sends a string of jokes her way that his boss finds equally amusing. Also the intercut scenes, with Brandis in a ice cream shop and Dangerfield in a bar telling the owners their problems, where their words are misinterpreted, Dangerfield's getting him kicked out with the funniest misunderstood line I've ever heard in my life. Ladybugs is a comedy treat for the whole family. I suggest zipping down to the DVD shop and hiring it, if you can find it. If your lucky to see a copy of it in the ex rental video section, buy it. Please! You won't be disappointed. Ladybugs, a whole movie of laughs, is runner up to Dangerfield's supreme hit, Back to School.
Question: Why is such a charming movie intolerable? Answer: Because there is nothing in it you *need* to tolerate! With this movie, you *don't* have to endure scene after eye-rolling scene of toilet humor, sexual schadenfreude, and politically-correct-preaching just to get to a very few fetid laughs. By contrast, this movie is pure silly fun and it is laugh-out-loud contagious!
Rodney Dangerfield's schtick is in full-effect in this early 90's comedy-romp about a hapless Joe whose search for love (and respect) leads him on a rather crooked path. He delightfully loses his way while enlisting the likes of a self-help guru, his coworker, his boss, his girlfriend's estranged son, and even a girls' soccer team in his quest to get married.
Naysayers will nit-pick about the improbable nature of the double-identity situations or about how the team came together in the end or any number of any other situations in this flick. To them I say, "So what?" These are the same people who would pick apart a Marx Brothers film because of the "contrived" appearance of a harp for Harpo to play or on the "stupidity" of the people who believe Dr. Quackenbush (Groucho) is a real doctor! It's a COMEDY, people!
All that being said, I must say this is picture is a true gem and I couldn't end this review without mentioning my favorite "Ladybugs" quote -- Rodney Dangerfield (mustering all the humanity he can into this one line): "What's the point in being the best, if it only brings out your worst?"
Before Will Ferrell started in a comedy about a kids soccer team there
was a movie called Ladybugs. You have Rodney Dangerfield who plays
Chester Lee. While trying to get a promotion Chester Lee agrees to
coach the company's all girl soccer team. The only problem is he
doesn't know anything about soccer. He ends up dressing up his fiancé's
son who actually knows stuff about soccer to help the team.
You probably have seen some of other Rodney Dangerfield's movies like Back to School, Easy Money or Caddyshack. This movie is filled with all the great one liners and jokes that make Rodney Dangerfield so great. There are parts of this movie that are totally random but still funny. It seems like Rodney Dangerfield was trying to make a movie that would appeal to kids and be family friendly. Don't let the 4.7 rating fool you. This a funny movie with Rodney Dangerfield in it about soccer.
We all have our own guilty pleasure, most of them we never admit to, however I will admit one now. I have loved this movie ever since I was a kid. Now that I've watched it as an adult, I can admit that it is one terrible movie, but it still had me laughing as hard as I did when I was 10 years old. In Ladybugs, Rodney Dangerfield plays a salesman who is asked to coach his company sponsored, girls soccer team, but he had no idea what he was in for. The other coaches are ruthless, the parents are insane, and worst of all his team is terrible, so what is a comedian to do? He gets his girlfriends, athletic, 14 year old son to dress up as a girl and join the team. The son is played by teen heartthrob Jonathan Brandis, who I became a huge fan of during the show Seaquest DSV. Brandis was absolutely hysterical as the teenage son, playing a teenage daughter. Some of his lines, along with his interactions with Dangerfield are pure comic genius. As for Dangerfield, while he was a legendary stand-up comedian, he was a terrible actor. The next logical step for a great stand-up comic is acting, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, and while Dangerfield has some pretty funny lines, he is one of the worst acting comedians I have ever seen. The story here is a unique and interesting one, in a context that is most definitely not meant for younger kids. There are some funny lines and more laughs to be had at the ridiculousness of the situation, but besides that, this is not a great movie. I gave it an even rating, but when it comes to this film, I am biased by my admiration for the late Jonathan Brandis and my fondness for this film I have loved, since my childhood.
I thought this film was so funny - I can see why some people may not have found it as amusing as I did because some of the jokes were only tasteful if you like that sort of thing, but otherwise, I thought that everything was portrayed as best it could have been and Jonathan Brandis, playing Martha as well as Matthew, was wonderful. Some parents may find this a bit childish, but it's the type of film you can't help but laugh at. I think the best bits are where Matthew/Martha are both confronted with some difficult explaining to do and they have to get each other out of a awkward position. One of the funniest films I've ever had the chance to see!
Rodney Dangerfield is at his best. Some excellent one liners and some excellent gags. Probably one of my favourite films. There have been a lot of films when a male has been forced to dress in drag. Some good, some bad. This one is excellent. 10 out of 10.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
To climb the corporate ladder to success, a guy agrees to coach the
company's all girl soccer team with the help of his secret weapon: his
By the beginning of the 1990's, Rodney Dangerfield's film career was kind of beginning to reach the downhill slope, but all the same, that didn't stop him from bringing out some hilarious performances. Ladybugs is a good movie that is capable of producing some good laughs. Would I rank this as a masterpiece of comedy? No. Would I rank it along with Easy Money, Caddyshack, and Back To School as being one of Rodney Dangerfield's best movies? Probably not. But all the same, I still enjoyed it a lot, I really did. Seeing Rodney Dangerfield coaching an all female soccer team is just bound to be a recipe for problems, and boy, it proves to be so, as during the course of the film, Dangerfield brings out the laughs. Whenever Dangerfield appears in a movie, he always lights up the screen, even if the movie itself isn't all that good, he always manages to be funny every minute that he is on screen, and he certainly managed to do that in this movie.
The cast surprisingly gave good performances. In addition to Dangerfield being his usual outrageous self, the late Jonathan Brandis does good work in his role as Matthew, the son of Dangerfield's fiancée who voluntarily disguises himself as a girl in order to lead the soccer team to victory. It's a shame that Brandis died so young, as he had talent, and he might have even become a great actor. And while the rest of the cast seemed committed to their performances, Dangerfield of course was on top of everyone. Basically, as with some of his earlier movies, he basically takes a lot of his stand-up material and was able to make it into a movie. Normally, that doesn't sound like it would work, but it worked here surprisingly.
All in all, while Ladybugs isn't going to go down as a masterpiece of the comedy genre, it's still a funny movie that's fun to watch. Seeing Rodney Dangerfield coaching a soccer team is just bound to get anybody who loves the man laughing, as the way he does it is very funny. Basically, if you love Dangerfield, then there is a good chance that you will like this movie, as it's funny. While not a masterpiece of comedy or one of Dangerfield's best efforts, it's still is capable of getting some good laughs out of anybody who enjoys the man.
Rodney Dangerfield had at this point become known for playing sympathetic losers who go to outrageous lengths to climb the ladder of success. Here he is Chester Lee, a salesman with an understanding fiancée and a typical apathetic stepson. While trying to get a promotion, he somehow gets himself into coaching his bosses' championship soccer team, The Ladybugs. He accepts, merely on hearing the team's legacy. He soon finds out that all but one of the players is new to the team and know even less than he does. He then enlists the help of his stepson, a gifted soccer player, having him pose as a girl. The film is funny enough, as Dangerfield's wit carries it through. The b plot of the stepson's crush, who is also the bosses daughter,r is thrown in for teen appeal. This movie does not pretend to be anything more than a harmless farce, and is all the better for it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
warning- spoilers I saw this film in the theaters in 1992 and it was good,clean, wholesome fun.A great movie for kids,then and now.It also dealt with the issue of blended families in a light-hearted yet respectful way. The death of Mr. Brandis was a terrible tragedy.I hope that fans of movies will keep his spirit alive. LADY BUGS is the story of a soccer coach who knows nothing whatever of the sport.Our hero,played by the legendary Rodney Dangerfield, is a hapless employee who is coerced into coaching his boss's daughter's pathetic soccer squad. Rodney is in it for the money, but he ultimately comes to realize that he can play a role in helping these unathletic girls with their self-esteem.Part of his strategy is to dress up his future stepson as a girl in hopes of using his speed and dribbling ability as a means to get some victories for the real girls on the team.Along the way, everyone involved learns some lessons about love, forgiveness, and self-respect. Not a bad message for kids at all.
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