In Missouri, during the 1840s, young Huck Finn fearful of his drunkard father and yearning for adventure, leaves his foster family and joins with runaway slave Jim in a voyage down the Mississippi River toward slavery free states.
Courtney B. Vance,
A mischievous young boy, Tom Sawyer (Jonathan Taylor Thomas, witnesses a murder by the deadly Injun Joe. Tom becomes friends with Huckleberry Finn (Brad Renfro, a boy with no future and no family. Tom has to choose between honoring a friendship or honoring an oath because the town alcoholic is accused of the murder. Tom and Huck go through several adventures trying to retrieve evidence. Written by
During two months of Alabama filming, the production endured muggy heat, swarming bugs, a mysterious "killer" mulch that made several people sick, ferocious thunderstorms, and a tornado threat. See more »
When Injun Joe places the treasure map on the table in the haunted house, it is folded up and slid under something else. In the next shot from Tom and Huck's view, it is unfolded and uncovered. See more »
We all know the story. There have been some pretty good Tom Sawyer movies made. This one capitalizes on star power for an audience that probably has never heard of the principle character. Putting these motives aside, it just doesn't work the best. While Jonathan Taylor Thomas is an adequate Tom, Brad Renfro is not a very good Huck. He is too much of a pretty boy. He is much too bright, though his character tries to make him otherwise. If you've read Twain, you know that he is tremendously superstitious and has really rough edges, both mentally and physically. He is kind of whiny in this movie. Becky Thatcher looks to be about 25 years old and stands next to Tom like a giant. She pushes him around and dominates. Obviously, the director decided to make her an attractive character to young women. That's not bad, but it betrays the spirit of the period in which it was written. They should at least have looked about the same age.
There are good scenes. The graveyard scene is well done. Injun Joe is threatening and murderous. The funeral scene is a disappointment. It needed to be milked a bit. Some of the peripheral characters could have been more developed. The conclusion works OK. However, it needed a dose of truth and believability to carry it through. See it, but don't expect a lot.
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