TV child star of the '70s, Dickie Roberts is now 35 and parking cars. Craving to regain the spotlight, he auditions for a role of a normal guy, but the director quickly sees he is anything but normal. Desperate to win the part, Dickie hires a family to help him replay his childhood and assume the identity of an average, everyday kid. Several folk who are also involved in Dickie's special world include: Sidney, Dickie's longtime friend and agent; Cyndi, his on-again, off-again girlfriend; Peggy, Dickie's real mother; George, Dickie's adopted father figure; and Grace, his adopted mother figure. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Fred Wolf and David Spade originally wrote a skit in the '90s for Saturday Night Live (1975) about a child star rampage, spoofing The Silence of the Lambs (1991), for when Macaulay Culkin was hosting, but it was cut. The idea was later pitched for The WB, but they turned it down. It was eventually totally rewritten and turned into this movie, originally written as a dark comedy with more references to drug use by child stars. See more »
At the end of Heather Bolan's audition, her hands are in her hair. She is shown from behind, and she puts her arms down. When she is shown from the front, she puts her arms down again. See more »
At the very end of the credits, David Spade can be heard in voice-over, talking directly to the audience. Among other things, he encourages moviegoers to abandon their trash in their seats, and accuses someone in the audience of farting (then admits it was he). See more »
David Spade is one of my fave SNL stars and he's made better movies than the rest of his old pals (It's Pat, Coneheads and Master of Disguise are among the worst films ever made). I especially liked him as the voice of Kuzko in the Emperor's New Groove. Here he plays Dickie Roberts: (former) Child Star, a kid at the top, but a man at the bottom and absolutely desperate for a comeback.
His agent (John Lovitz) cannot find him any work outside of celebrity boxing, his girlfriend has dumped him and Dickie's main source of income is parking cars. You get the picture, he's a completely fallen star.
Rob Reiner has a role that Dickie would love to get his hands on but Rob wont touch him because it requires an actor who knows 'normal', someone who knows how to be an adult, someone who had a proper childhood. Desperate to get the part, Dickie hires an ordinary middle-class family (dedicated mum, workaholic dad, bullied son, wishful daughter) to look after him like proper parents.
Trouble naturally follows. But Dickie's hijinks lessen and his new family's tolerance increases. Yes, they do learn from each other and become better people (yadda yadda) but there is just so much fun and craziness along the way and some genuine character moments.
There are loads of celebrity cameos (Tom Arnold, Corey Feldman, Brendan Fraser, Dustin Diamond) and lots of biting satire and the movie industry but the bulk of the film relies upon Dickie learning family values and having fun with the kids, being a kid. Proof positive that he's still the best (former) SNL star.
The only bad thing I can mention is Adam Sandler's involvement as executive producer, something that seriously tarnishes the film and prevents it from having any real class.
The DVD is in great looking 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen with Dolby 5.1 sound and quite a few extras.
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