Buff sailor man Popeye arrives in an awkward seaside town called Sweethaven. There he meets Wimpy, a hamburger-loving man; Olive Oyl, the soon-to-be love of his life; and Bluto, a huge, mean pirate who is out to make Sweethaven pay for no good reason. Popeye also discovers his long-lost Pappy in the middle of it all, so with a band of his new friends, Popeye heads off to stop Bluto, and he's got the power of spinach, which Popeye detests, to bust Bluto right in the mush. Watch as Popeye mops the floor with punks in a burger joint, stops a greedy taxman, takes down a champion boxer, and even finds abandoned baby Swee'pea. He's strong to the finish 'cause he eats his spinach.Written by
Dylan Self <firstname.lastname@example.org>
As per the info in the trivia section of this film, the make up and appliances for Popeye's massive forearms were not ready. So in some scenes, especially the boxing match, if you look at the inside of his forearms, you can see that they are merely flesh colored pads tied over Robin Williams' arms (the strings are visible). See more »
The film opens and ends with the Sailor's Hornpipe, a famous nautical song. This song is heard as part of Popeye's theme song in the opening, then is heard in its full form at the film's ending. See more »
A recent television version is altered in at least one way. Bluto's song "I'm Mean" is eliminated from the soundtrack as he trashes the Oyls' family home waiting for Olive Oyl. See more »
Robert Altman was just the right director to bring "Popeye" to live action. His use of naturalistic, overlapping and mumbled speech patterns, used to such good effect in "M*A*S*H," is the perfect fit for the residents of the shanty town of Sweethaven. Along with his production crew, he expertly reconstructs the environs and reanimates the zany spirit of the early black and white Popeye cartoons, the ones before Popeye was cleaned up and turned into a tool of U.S. war propaganda. Robin Williams carries off the title role with expert skill in a performance that he, especially he, very easily could have gone over the top with. Shelley Duvall as Olive Oyl and the kid who played Swee'Pea are likewise letter perfect for their roles.
One of the things I always liked about this movie is the music. Harry Nilsson, a greatly underappreciated talent, came up with a delightful batch of songs that are that are as rich in character as the atmosphere of Sweethaven is full of sodium. Altman's "Popeye," along with Warren Beatty's "Dick Tracy," is one of the rare film versions of a cartoon that succeeds. It does so by staying true to the look and spirit of the original. It wasn't created by committee to be a summer blockbuster, hence it is allowed to have a personality and flavor -- a flavor that blooms with repeat viewings.
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