Plot: What’s it about?
It’s hard not to think of the names “Gomez” and “Tish” without thinking of the hilarious TV show, The Addams Family. While being a rather dark television series, even thirty years ago, The Addams Family manages to be a very entertaining and very funny dark comedy for the 90’s. Looking something like Tim Burton would make, with it’s evil sense of humor and lack of bright colors, The Addams Family exploded on the screen in late 1991. It’s success, obviously, inspired a sequal which was not quite as original but just as entertaining. In this first installment we find our gang led by Gomez Addams (the late Raul Julia who was perfect in this role) and “Tish” Addams (Angelica Houston). They are in search for their dear relative, Uncle Fester (Christopher Lloyd), but have almost given up hope of conjuring him up from the dead. When a local woman gets wind of this, she dresses her son, who bears a striking resembelance to Fester, up like the departed relative and decides to get rich off their grief and appreciation.
The Addams Family is all about fun. While it is considered a “dark” comedy, it has it’s moments that are outright funny. One scene that comes to mind is the “Mamushka” dance between Gomez and Fester. A traditional dance of the Addams family, it’s purely hilarious to see these characters up on screen dancing around like mad Russians! It’s also interesting to note that the character of Wednesday Addams is played with deadpan perfection by Christina Ricci, who has become quite the celebrity in her own right. The rest of the cast includes great character actor Dan Heyda and M.C. Hammer (who performed the theme song to the movie) to name but a few.
The plot isn’t all that hard to figure out, and director Barry Sonnenfield has fun with the movie just like he did in Men In Black. It conveys a serious message of family, but at the same time can make you laugh until you’re blue in the face (like many of the Addams’ relatives). One might argue that The Addams Family is all about one liners, and they might be right. No matter which way you look at it, The Addams Family was successful enough to spawn a neverending string of old 60’s TV shows that have now found their way to the silver screen (and our home theaters).
Video: How does it look?
The Addams Family is presented in an anamorphic 1.85:1 transfer. The transfer looks great, colors however purposely muted they are, look great. While this movie features most of the shots at night an in dark rooms and whatnot, the picture still maintains it’s integrity. Fleshtones are right on level, and even the edge enhancement looks great. A top notch transfer from Paramount, why can’t Disney take note???
Audio: How does it sound?
Perhaps the most suprising thing about The Addams Family is how delightfully good it sounds. For a title that is coming up on it’s 10 year anniversary, the Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is very active. Hammer’s song sounds outright great and the dialogue and other effects sound very solid as well. Split surrounds are used very effective and I really can’t say how good this is! Nice job here as well Paramount!
Supplements: What are the extras?
There are two theatrical trailers.