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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.
This version of the classic novel by Mark Twain makes a nice little movie,
but fails to capture the humorous spirit of the book. Many hilarious
are missing and the writers have taken too many liberties with the
Jonathan Taylor Thomas is wonderful as Tom Sawyer. Unfortunately his charm does not last until the very end of the movie, but seems to fade after a while. It might possibly have something to do with the fact, that, even though this movie is based on "The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer", it's actually Huck's character that steals the whole show.
I had a bit of a problem with the way Huck Finn was portrayed in this movie. Of course Brad Renfro is a fantastic actor (his performance is probably the best thing about this film) and he manages to give Huck Finn many tragic and deep aspects. Unfortunately Mark Twain's Huck Finn is neither tragic or very deep. One can only wonder why Huck has been made the brooding hero, when it's actually Tom Sawyer, who is supposed to be the brightest star in this story.
Despite the many sugar-coated scenes and the fact that both Tom and Huck are a bit out-of-character, this movie is still something worth seeing. Injun Joe and Muff Potter are both realistic and Rachael Leigh Cook makes a brilliant and not-so-girly Becky Thatcher! The sets and wardrobe look very authentic, but they alone are not enough to bring the evergreen story wholly alive.
Visually, Tom and Huck is eye-pleasing, and Jonathan Taylor Thomas and
Brad Renfro make a good pair as Tom and Huck. Other cast members fit
That the film did not strictly follow Mark Twain is no problem if you let the film story stand on its own. It is entertaining just for what it is.
Tom and Huck is an interesting enough film, but the transformation of Eric Schweig in his portrayal of Injun Joe compared to his characterization of Uncas in The Last of the Mohicans, is the most fascinating thing about it. In the body of his films, he seems to be able to alternate between utterly noble and utterly disgusting (e.g., Missing). Great acting.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a mixed-bag when it comes to story-telling. Some scenes work quite well, others are totally poor. One of the weakest is the famous "engagement" scene. It is thrown away as a totally one-note sentimental piece, and misses the comic potential of the scene. The version of TOM SAWYER starring Johnny Whittaker and Jodie Foster delivered it a lot better.
Brad Renfro does a technically brilliant performance here. He can obviously relate to Huck very well and there is obviously some parallels with his own life. Unfortunately, he doesn't suit Huck as a classic story character, and he certainly doesn't suit the style of the rest of this movie. The effect is like Robert DeNiro doing his TAXI DRIVER role in the middle of a Laurel & Hardy comedy. It takes a lot of skill to make these styles fit together, and it's certainly out of the league of the production of this film.
Jonathan Taylor Thomas is fairly good as Tom. He does the climactic court scene very well, and he is generally charming and mischevious. But he lacks the depth to make the character really come alive. The whitewashing scene is fairly good, though I've seen better.
Not bad, but certainly no classic. The previous film THE ADVENTURES OF HUCK FINN is actually a far better adaptation of a famous Twain novel.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Maybe it's because I read the book before viewing it, or maybe I was
over-analyzing it, but I swear this was one of the worst movies I ever
saw. I mean it.
First of all, why is it called Tom and Huck? After watching the entire movie, I came to the conclusion that the film really should have been titled "Tom and a few other people". Huck rarely has any affect on the story, and his character is always in the shadow of Tom. Anyway, as I mentioned, I had to read this book for school right before also watching the movie,in school. Now, I know what happens in the Mark Twain's classic, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. I know the plot, the story, the key events, and the settings of the book. However, I don't think that the creators of this movie do. Right off the bat, the movie features an event that never happens in the book. That's a bad sign right there.
I also did not like the acting. I suppose Johnathan Thomas was alright as Tom Sawyer, but I did not like the roles of Huck, Injun Joe, or Becky Thatcher. The performances that these actors gave were bland and totally non-believable.
The thing I hated the MOST though, was the movie's sheer stupidity. I can not believe how many inexcusable moments there were in the movie. And it's not just the fact that there are parts that aren't from the book. But there are some parts that just do not make any sense, whatsoever. I question sometimes what the writers(not Mark Twain) were thinking when they wrote this. There is a scene in the movie in which Tom is doing stunts on a bridge that's above a small, shallow creek. Becky comes along and PUSHES Tom off the bridge and into the creek! Now, this may not sound bad, until you realize that if his angle of fall was just a tad steeper, he probably would either broken his neck or have been killed. There is another part that absolutely made me grind my gears. There is a scene in the movie in which Tom and Huck need to get the treasure map from Injun Joe, who is sleeping in the forest after drinking a pretty good amount of alcohol. Tom and Huck then realize they need to blend in with the back round, so they cover themselves with mud. Tom starts walking toward Injun Joe, who wakes up and looks straight at Tom, but doesn't see him as if he is the Predator and Tom is fooling his infrared vision with the mud on him. I mean come on! I realize that Injun Joe is supposed to be super drunk, but can you really be drunk enough to not notice the giant piece of mud in front of you that looks suspiciously a lot like a boy? As for the rest of the movie, I can't say it doesn't follow the basic plot of the book; it does. But it seems to be butchered. There are many parts of it which either A) Don't belong there and come later/earlier in the story; B) Never even happen in the book; or C) Are missing.
In Conclusion, I give this movie a 2/10. Why a 2 instead of a 1? Well, because the movie did supply me with some good laughs, but sadly, that's all it offers.
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.
Going through the Top 250 lists from various years, somehow this ended up on the list for 1996. Of all the lists from 1996 through 2014, this first list is the most bizarre. Others have films that clearly do not belong, but none more than the 1996 list. And this is a prime example. How did a film that barely ranks above 5 out of 10 manage to be considered one of the best of all time? Not that this is a bad film. As far as kid stories go, it is alright, and not the worst introduction to the world of Mark Twain. But it is clearly not intended to be a masterpiece, but more like something one might see on the Hallmark channel. Just a showcase for the now-forgotten Jonathan Taylor Thomas.
Nineteenth century Mississippi River boy Jonathan Taylor Thomas (as Tom
Sawyer) tries to runaway to New Orleans with his pals, but has to abort
the mission with a bloody forehead. As punishment, young Thomas is
directed to whitewash a fence, by guardian Amy Wright (as Aunt Polly).
Thomas cleverly gets neighborhood lads to finish the job. He shares
adventures with rebellious best-friend Brad Reno (as Huckleberry "Huck"
Finn) and pretty girl-friend Rachael Leigh Cook (as Becky Thatcher).
While nothing to write Mark Twain about, the Disney studio's follow-up to their "The Adventures of Huck Finn" (1993) is serviceable. Both films would have (and will) be much more appealing to the elementary and primary school set, who will hopefully read the books. Strengths from the earlier version look better with a simpler music score and more appropriate leads. One wishes they had waited on the previous film to release as a sequel to this "Tom and Huck", as the original author intended.
***** Tom and Huck (12/22/95) Peter Hewitt ~ Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Brad Renfro, Eric Schweig, Rachael Leigh Cook
The first time that I remember seeing this was at my 5th grade
teacher's house. Every since then, I liked it.
Jonathan Taylor Thomas and Brad Renfro are some of my favorite actors of the 90s, and they delivered a clean performance in this film. The girl who played as Becky wasn't half bad either (although at times her selfish and rather stubborn attitude annoyed me). But she did seem to do a better job than Jodie Foster did in the 70s musical version of "Tom Sawyer" (no disrespect).
I've seen several versions of the "Tom Sawyer" and "Huckleberry Finn" stories, and although it's not my favorite version of the story, it is amongst my favorites. All in all, I give it a 7/10.
I saw Tom and Huck about 15 years ago and I must say It was a Pretty Good Movie. The plot was pretty good about two boys named Tom Sawyer and Hucklberry Finn who go out to find a murder named Injun Joe who murdered the doctor of their town and framed their friend Muff Potter for the crime. The movie was just really great and had a lot of funny scenes in it including the scene where Tom and Huck disguise themselves in mud to hide from Injun Joe. Jonathan Taylor Thomas, whom I think is one of the most gifted child actors ever did a fantastic job playing Tom Sawyer and the late Brad Renfro did a fantastic job as Huck Finn. Both actors bought good performances to their characters and child actress Rachael Leigh Cook I thought did a good job as Tom's love interest Becky Thatcher. And actor Eric Schweig I thought gave a good performance as the villainous Injun Joe. Disney couldn't of cast a better actor to play the role. I say that Tom and Huck is a Great Disney Movie that the whole family must see. I give it a 10 out of 10.
Director Peter Hewitt captured the essence of friendship in this family friendly film. Set in southern Missouri in the early 1800's, Tom (Jonathon Taylor Thomas) and Huck (Brad Renfro)reunite and have some very interesting adventures together. While trying to get rid of warts in the graveyard, they witness a murder at the hands of Injun Joe (Eric Schweig). They swear an oath not to tell and sign in blood, for fear of Injun Joe coming after them. Tom has doubts about their oath, however, when an innocent man, Tom's friend, is accused of the murder. Tom has to make a very hard decision, friendship or an innocent man's death? In the mix is an ancient treasure and an important map, making this a movie to remember. This is an action-packed adventure kids will love and parents will approve of.
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