A remake of the television series, Matthew Broderick stars as Gadget, who suffers an accident at the beginning of the film, and befriends Brenda, a robotic surgeon who repairs Gadget so that he can defeat the villain Claw. In the meantime, Gadget and Brenda fall in love. Written by
Ari Herzog <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Children and adults alike are decidedly ill served by "Inspector Gadget," a frenetic but genuinely mirthless live action take on the popular Saturday morning cartoon series that mires poor Matthew Broderick in the role of a nerdish do-gooder who gets the chance to live out his heroic fantasies when he is converted into a one-man, self-contained crime fighting cybernetic arsenal.
Thanks to current state-of-the-art special effects, the filmmakers manage to effectively translate the cartoonish aspects of the original to the live action format. Despite a few glaringly bad shots utilizing rear screen projection, the visuals that help to realize the infinite gadgets at the inspector's disposal are genuinely jaw-dropping.
What the movie makers couldn't (or, at least, wouldn't) come up with is a decent script - without which all the greatest special effects in the world cannot a quality film make. Gadget is surrounded by a gallery of dull, poorly written caricatures ranging from a giddy, self-absorbed mayor, to a gruff, shortsighted chief of police, and an effete mad scientist bent on creating an army of indestructible gadget warriors, with which, of course, he (ho hum) plans to rule the world. Even the newly "hipified" gadget mobile comes across as a charmless, grating irritant as he provides a constant stream of witless one-liners as running commentary to the action.
Of the actors, Broderick and Rupert Everett cannot be faulted since both provide a degree of enthusiasm wholly unwarranted by the inferior screenplay with which they are saddled. For a perfect marriage of sophisticated writing and unsurpassable special effects, check out "Toy Story 2." And see what "Inspector Gadget" might indeed have been.
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