Cast: Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloe Grace Moretz, Finn Wolfhard
Directors: Conrad Vernon, Greg Tiernan
Well, would it really be Halloween without a soulless, uninspired cash-grab remake of a franchise that has achieved international success in the past? Well, it seems like The Addams Family is going to be the film that does it this year. I know MGM isn’t the powerhouse studio for animated movies like Pixar or Dreamworks, but they had to know that this movie would be nothing but mediocre nothingness from the minute they conceived the idea. While the voice acting, animation, and concept aren’t particularly terrible, they are far from original and that’s what hampers the movie and makes it a slightly below average animated movie released at the right time.
The film follows the Addams family, parents Gomez (Isaac) and Morticia (Theron) and their two kids Wednesday (Moretz) and Pugsley (Wolfhard). When Gomez and Morticia are driven out of their home by angry human villagers, they relocate and find a new place to call home where they can raise their family. While things start to look up for the family, naturally the issues of their past start to come up again and they have to deal with a new set of humans who are intolerant of the way the Addams live. Can the family find peace in their new home or will they be forced to relocate again due to their differences? For a holiday-themed movie aimed at younger audiences, it’s not the end of the world when the film doesn’t exactly go to great lengths to do any spectacular or amazing. It’s only 87 minutes, so everyone watching knows exactly what this movie planned on doing and for the most part it accomplishes those goals. This is supposed to be a harmless, in-and-out movie where you take kids just to distract them for the time being and then you all go along your way. With that in mind, just because this movie is targeted at those with shorter attention spans doesn’t mean that it has to feel cheap and manufactured. This movie is littered with pop culture references and catchy songs from today’s top artists. While that may work with modern audiences, this movie will have absolutely no rewatch value in a matter of 10 years. Today’s kids may love it, but it will be impossible to show this movie to the next generation’s kids without hours of confusion and boredom. Sure we see these types of movies come out every year and it’s nothing strange or obscene to see, but that doesn’t mean they get a free pass for their mediocrity. These studios have all the money in the world to make quality entertainment that reaches across demographics but their failure to do so is because the don’t need to from a profit standpoint. When a movie like this make almost $200 million and has a sequel on the way, there’s no incentive for the studio to deviate from what made them money so this trend will continue as long as it works out in their favor.
Overall, while not the worst animated movie of the year, The Addams Family took characters that have been beloved by millions of people around the world and morphed them into cheap, simple knockoffs of the people we used to know. Hopefully MGM will realize the technical and plot mistakes they made with this movie and correct them when the sequel comes out, but based on how much money this movie made I highly doubt we will see any changes. I hope one day we live in a world where studios stop producing movies for the money and focus more on the art, but I fear with a below-average movie like this making so much money I think we’re further away from the point than I would like.
Overall Score: 4.5/10