35 years after The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show's cancellation, our two TV heroes have been living off the finances of their reruns on TV. To make matters worse, Rocky has lost his ability to fly, and the trees in Frostbite Falls have all been cut down. Meanwhile, over in Pottsylvania, home of Rocky and Bullwinkle's arch enemies Fearless Leader, Boris, and Natasha, the Iron Curtain has fallen, leading the villains to leave Pottsylvania, and dig through a tunnel all the way to the TV of a Hollywood Producer, Minnie Mogul. She signs a contract, giving her the rights to produce the Rocky and Bullwinkle Movie, and accidentally pulls the three villains out of the TV, turning them into humans! Now, they have an evil plan to hypnotize America, using RBTV (Really Bad TeleVision), making everyone's mind mush, so he can go on to the TV, and get everyone to vote him President of the USA! However, new FBI Agent Karen Sympathy has an assignment--get the only ones who could ever defeat the villains- ... Written by
Rene Russo met June Foray at the film's table reading. By her own account, Russo was very nervous about taking on the role of Natasha Fatale and requested Foray to demonstrate the voice. Foray graciously obliged. See more »
When Rocky is hypnotized by the broadcast, and Karen goes to check on him, she points her pistol upward, and we catch a glimpse of the butt end - there is no magazine. See more »
[over stock footage of various historical events in a parody of a newsreel]
1964, a crucial moment in American history: Lyndon Johnson is re-elected to the presidency by a landslide, the New York World's Fair introduces a bright new future...
[scene cuts to show an animated Bullwinkle pull Rocky from his hat]
and after five scintillating years on the air...
The Rocky & Bullwinkle Show is abruptly cancelled.
[...] See more »
The globe in the opening Universal Studios logo morphs into a fancy-cut star seen in the roof of a '50s-style auditorium. See more »
My Take: Yet another lame attempt to put animation into flesh-and-blood reality.
"This is not a cartoon, this is the real world!", claims rookie FBI agent Karen Sympathy, played by Piper Perabo, and I wish I can say the same thing about THE ADVENTURES OF ROCKY AND BULWINKLE. It has a big budget, which it spends on fancy cartoonish sets and other bizarre gimmicks, for what? To make it look like a cartoon! This results into a lot of things that we could prefer seeing in a Saturday morning cartoon. But as a movie, it's pretty hard to see why this was such a favorite cartoon during the early '60's. This is one of the most ineffective and unfunny movies I've seen in a while. And if your not convinced, lets move to to the casting. Lets see, Robert De Niro as Fearless Leader and Jason Alexander and Rene Russo as his bumbling minions. Okay, now your convinced.
The film uses the technique of putting animated characters in real-live settings and real actors. This was done many times since films in the 80's like WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT and, recently SPACE JAM. And like SPACE JAM, although not quite as bad, ROCKY AND BULWINKLE enjoys too much with the playfulness of its cartoon characters that they forget that they're making a feature film here. So, it has not much to tell and can't even afford to make jokes that really work.
The film is basically a cartoon on a live action movie (which is made just as cartoonish as the animated world). Animated evil mastermind Fearless Leader (De Niro) and his henchmen have crossed the boundaries of an animated world and arrive in our 4-dimensional world and start a TV company called RBTV, meaning "Really Bad Television" (how prophetic), and turn people to mindless drones with their horrible cable shows. The FBI sends a rookie agent (Perabo) to protect still-animated Rocky and Bulwinkle from being zapped, allowing the megalomaniac from ruling the world.
And as the story goes, the laughs and silliness get even worse. The film hardly made me laugh, and no head-hitting, car-crashing and any other mishap to change my mind about that. They should know they're making a motion picture here, not a an episode of Bugs and Daffy (which, at least, is better than this). Despite its budget, director Des McAnuff instead spends it on silly cartoonish gimmicks that, joined in with the corny laughs (if you'd call it laughs) and embarrassed leads, it can all be summed up in a 30 minute animated feature for TV, not an 88 minute film.
Still, I did find one thing that was quite bearable in this walking disaster waiting to happen, and that is the entertaining cameos. How many movies can you see well-known (and then well-known) talents like Whoppi Goldberg, John Goodman, Kenan (Thompson) and Kel (Mitchell) and Billy Crystal just to name a few. Their cameos thankfully lightens up my high criticism for the film, but that doesn't stop me from giving it a big thumbs down.
Still, I won't discourage you from letting the kids see it, for it's mainly made for them and they might be the only ones who'll enjoy it.
Rating: * out of 5.
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