Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) review
An old favorite of mine that seems to have just gotten better with my age.
PLOT:In 1940s Hollywood, cartoons and humans live together separated by a boundary to what is known as Toontown. Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins), the famed detective, doesn't like toons; he hasn't since one killed his brother/partner back in the day. Now he's forced to work with them again when he is put on the case of photographing the affair of famous cartoon star, Roger Rabbit's wife, Jessica Rabbit (Kathleen Turner) and mayor of Toontown, Marvin Acme (Stubby Kaye) by the cartoon-maker, R. K. Maroon. When Roger finds out about the affair, he is devastated, but is he devastated enough for murder? Later that night, Acme is murdered and all fingers point to Roger Rabbit. Now Eddie must get to the bottom of the case and prove Roger's innocence, not to mention find Acme's will before it falls into the wrong hands, specifically the evil Judge Doom (Christopher Lloyd), who has nasty plans for Toontown. Will they find the Acme's will? Will Roger's innocence be proven? Will Eddie Valiant stop being so bitter towards toons? I'll leave you here. It's a very unique twist to a classic detective story executed cleverly.
ACTING/VOICES:There was a variation between acting and voices. Hoskins did a great job as the bitter detective. Lloyd did his usual overacting style, and did a pretty decent job since he faces a huge personality change near the end. Kaye simply did his job. Turner did a great job voicing the sultry Jessica Rabbit. The other shiners in here were the voice of Roger Rabbit, Joanna Cassidy as Dolores, Charles Fleischer as Benny the Cab, and the cameo of Mel Blanc as the Looney Tunes.
SCORE:The score was mainly played for comedic effect with several silly songs, but it was pretty catchy and fun.
ANIMATION:The blend of animation and live action in here was done with so much ease it's like Zemeckis knew what to do before he did it. The animation is not only nostalgic, but innovative and detailed. The characters move with such realistic finesse that you could almost believe they were real.
OTHER CONTENT:This film is not only an innovative masterpiece in animation for its time, but it's clever, wacky, well-written, unique, and overall fun; Roger Rabbit is definitely a fun film to watch with its clever one-liners and wacky slapstick antics, yet one of its great strengths is its only flaw. The film is wacky fun, but that counts against it because you can't seem to take it seriously. Even in the ending scenes, it delivers more cartoonish comedy than it should need. Yes, it is halfway a cartoon. No, it doesn't need to thrive on wacky slapstick for its seriousness. I'm sure some will disagree, but I just felt that it was too much wacky.
OVERALL,an awesome movie with a cleverly executed plot, mainly great acting and voices, fun score, nostalgically innovative and detailed animation, and an overall fun film, but some of its fun and wackiness distract from the movie's more serious points.