Space Jam A New Legacy (First Thoughts)

“You remember fun, don’t you, doc?”

As the title suggests, these are just my first thoughts about this film. A synopsis, complete with annoying jokes, limited information, and inflations to my own ego will happen someday in the future. Not today, for it is the present.

Very short version of this post: 🙂

Long version of this post: I expected this movie to be fun. Not good, bad, great, or abysmal. Just fun. And I got exactly that. Let’s be real. Even the first S.J. wasn’t really all that great. (Something I’ve come to grips with long since I blogged about it.) Neither of them have a great story, these films are just an excuse to have cartoons play basketball. (And sell W.B. merchandise on the side.)

Speaking of weak story, I won’t lie: this film has got one of those. LeBron is just playing the “father who wants his progeny to be like him, despite the kid’s protests to do something else.” Seen it. And yeah, the man isn’t a superb actor. (At least he is able to admit it in the film.) Still, I feel he does better than Jordan did. He definitely emotes more. As opposed to Michael looking dead inside. (Really. How could you not go “Looney” getting to meet animation’s greatest characters?)

But as week as the story is, (and some might disagree with me on this) it’s leagues better than the first one’s. Having the Tunes exist in a digital world makes much more sense than being underground. And for that matter, LeBron’s actor/son’s conflict actually gets some sort of payoff. Unlike Michael’s actor/son who mopes a bit, cheers up upon finding his dad was kidnapped by animated characters, then disappears until the denouement.

And the crossover aspect! If you can fathom the idea of someone never seeing “Ready player one” or any “Avengers” movie, then you can probably believe me when I say I was getting goosebumps when all of Warner’s properties gather to watch the game. But there’s a downside to that too. After they assemble, they don’t do anything. Yes, they’re the audience, but the original film let its audience react a bit more. (The most we get here is a pout from King Kong.)

For that matter, the original utilized the Tunes universe just a bit better. The team you see in all the advertisements? That’s pretty much all we get. Marvin and K-9 get a little screen time, when everyone sans Bugs is coerced into seeing what other worlds they can explore there’s a group shot of many minor characters. It just goes by so fast one can’t enjoy it. (I was able to see Rocky, Muggsy and Playboy.) And Canasta appears in the “Mad Max” universe. That’s it.

Wasted potential there. Why couldn’t they join the rest of the crowd for watching?Too expensive to animate? Which reminds me, the animation was gorgeous. Not spectacular. There’s nothing on the levels of “Fantasia” or “Spirited Away.” But what we get is a real treat. Vibrant, bouncy, and looney. Just what I expected and wanted. But that’s the 2-d stuff. How was the 3-d?

I won’t lie. It looks good. And that’s a relief considering how computer generated animation trying to look like it really exists ranges from nightmare inducing:

“I’m the reason animated spider’s are drawn with simple mouths!”

To laughably pathetic.

“Did I miss the auditions for “Pan’s Labyrinth”?”

The voice acting was nice as well. Zendaya Maree Stoerme Coleman did pretty good as Lola. Heck, if I didn’t know going in, I would’ve figured Ms. Bunny was being voiced by a 25 years older Kath Soucie. And the basketball stars voicing the villains did an admirable job. And mentioning the villains, I thought they were a lot of fun. Even if super-powered mutant basketball players feels strangely familiar.

“Good news, everyone! The public no longer has to remember us via “Pixels!”

It’s a good thing they were a joy to watch, as they don’t get nearly as much screen time as the Monstars. And one of them appears too late, and disappears too fast. Why wasn’t he there from the start? Oh, and while I’m discussing the villains: I found Don Cheadle entertaining, but not Pete. He did nothing to further the story. Completely superfluous. But the Minions have made it so animated films won’t sell if there isn’t at least one tiny, annoying, comic relief character that wouldn’t be missed if cut out completely.

The weakest part of the film in my opinion? The ending. I won’t spoil it here, but it didn’t make a whole lot of sense to me, and seemed to wrap up a bit too fast. Lucky for me the fun stuff starts a lot quicker than its predecessor, so I don’t feel like there was a bunch of wasted time squeezing the entertaining middle.

And that pretty much wraps up my first thoughts after my first viewing of the first “Looney Tunes” film I’ve been able to see in theaters. My rating is just a few more lines down.

Short version of this post: I quite enjoyed it.

Favorite Part: Really, I did get chills seeing such a large crossover of properties. It might change in the future, but it’s the winner for now.

Personal Rating: I’ve been seeing fairly negative reviews from other people. I however, feel that if you go in expecting to see a movie that is more “fun than substance,” you’ll have a good time. (It’s the film equivalent of a lollipop.) Therefore, I grant it a 3 for the basic crowd, and a 4 for my fellow Looney-tics. (Yes, really.)

Tweety’s High-flying Adventure

Directed byKarl Torege, Charles Visser, James T. Walker, Kyung Won Lim

“Humph! Mr. Popular.”

In case you haven’t noticed, all of the shorts I’ve talked about recently had cats in them. Looney tunes are chock full of them. And so is this direct to video movie. It’s not spectacular, but I still find it enjoyable. So let’s get started.

It’s October 2nd, (I dunno, 2000 I guess) and Granny is living in London for some reason. She has two pets, namely Sylvester and Tweety. She is also a member of the Looney Club, which is located right next door to a children’s park that is going to close soon. Inside the club we see…COLONEL RIMFIRE? Wow! One of the last characters created for Looney Tunes. He doesn’t get roles anymore. Score one point for this film. He is busy ranting about the fact that he never caught his nemesis: Cool Cat. (Not that abomination created by Derek Savage. This character actually has earned his title) He takes a little solace in the fact that he was bested by a creature that was smarter than him. Not just Cool Cat, but all cats. He believes cats are the smartest creatures on the planet. (I disagree) Lucky for me, Granny is on my side, and when Rimfire says he’d bet his savings on his claim, she takes him up on it, hoping to use the winnings to restore the park. She claims that her canary can not only go around the globe in 80 days, (which would be until December 21, (I’m still going with 2000,) but also collect 80 different paw prints. It’s a big challenge, but Tweety’ll do anything for Granny. (Is it just me, or does that calendar have a picture of one of the hunters from “Horton hatches the egg” on it?) So he is given a passport to get stamped to prove he visited the locations. This gathers the attention of a shifty looking character in the crowd. It’s the Shropshire Slasher from the short “Deduce you say”. He eyes Tweety’s passport with great interest. The things might be rare soon. One’s been stolen apparently. Sylvester meanwhile plans on following the canary to make sure he and only he can have him for lunch. Outfitted with a tracking device, Tweety heads for his first stop in France. Not too long after, a wind blows him off course into the alps. Lodged into the side of a mountain, he asks a nearby climber for help. Said climber is actually Daffy, who is sore about the fact this is not his movie and refuses to help. An avalanche happens but the two are saved by snowboarder Bugs Bunny. It is now October 12, and Sylvester has been waiting in France this whole time. The script says that Tweety should have come here, could it be wrong? Nope. Here he comes now, being chased by Penelope Pussycat. She crashes into Sylvester’s table and gets a white stripe down her back. (hint hint) but that does not deter her from her purrrr-suit (weak I know.) of the bird. Not if Sylvester has anything to say about it. While they chase, Tweety get’s his passport stamped by Pepe. He then points out something he thinks he’ll like. Two skunks fighting over him. (It’s not really explained how Sylvester got a stripe as well) With those two occupied, Tweety collects Penelope’s print and flies off for Italy. Would you like to bet on whether or not Tweety will make it? Because his progress is being charted by Foghorn, Prissy, Henry, and Egghead Jr. And they’re accepting all bets. They believe he can do it. (Birds are encouraging like that) In Venice, Tweety stops at Pasquelles. The same restaurant Charlie Dog tried to make home in “A hound for trouble” He’s still there, playing waiter. Tweety orders a plate of birdseed with marinara sauce. As all Americans know, Italian food is good eating, so it’s no wonder that Tweety leaves the place plump as a turkey. He can’t even fly anymore, so he hitches a ride on a gondola. But flightless, plump, juicy, succulent birds are vulnerable. Surprise! The owner of it is a cat, and there are more up ahead on a bridge. Tweety uses his new physique to bowl over them. He gets their prints, and a stamp for Venice. (Turns out his fat was just gas. If only I had that problem) Tweety’s trip has garnered more attention, and he is even mentioned by Lola on the news. (She’s part of the cast now. So you might as well quit complaining about her.) Tweety makes it to Egypt and gets his passport stamped by a camel. (Who I think is Humpty Bumpty in a fez, but I can’t be sure.) Worn out, Tweety goes to sleep. But Sylvester must have gotten away form Pepe, (Please tell me he convinced him of his gender before it was too late.) And is back for more. After a scuffle, Tweety hides in the Sphinx. Granny wasn’t kidding about his smarts. He knows how to read Hieroglyphics. Turns out, the place has a terrible fate for anyone who tries to head down a certain hall. Since Sylvester isn’t aware, he gets attacked by mummified cats. (People really did that you know) They punch him hard enough to make a hole in the place for Tweety to escape from. He collects their prints and is on his way once more. Landing in Africa (in the jungle of crayon drawn trees) he encounters the Mynah Bird. Since that guy doesn’t talk, Tweety follows him hoping he’ll lead him to his next stamp. But he doesn’t look where he’s going and wanders into a lion’s mouth. (At least he found the stamp in there) He leaves the mouth of the beast, (which looks more like a dog dressed as a lion to me) but almost immediately runs into Pete Puma. (Why’s he here?) The two corner Tweety in a tree. (No relation to the short “Tree cornered Tweety”) Luckily for him, the Mynah comes back and saves him by flinging the predators away. With that done, Tweety heads to Tibet. He gets to a souvenir shop where Gossamar gives him another stamp. (Why not?) Tweety also catches sight of some monk cats lead by Claude. (He may look different, but the voice is a dead giveaway.) They are about to sacrifice a canary (who has hair) to their god. Tweety comes to the rescue in a snowball (picking up Hugo the abominable snowman along the way) and bowls over them. He looks just like their god and he demands that they release the bird, and knock off the canary sacrifices. Even though they agree, Tweety is a jerk and still sics Hugo on them. (But he does get their prints as well) He is joined by the other bird named Aooga. (No really.) After getting a stamp at China, the two are blown off course all the way to Mexico. At least that gives them a stamp for there. (Courtesy of Speedy) Since they are down there, they stop by Rio as well. Rocky and Muggsy are hiding out there, but they still give them a stamp. And in Argentina they get another one form (Spike? Marc Antony? Just a bulldog?) With the south taken care of, they fly back to Japan. (Seems the Slasher is still on the loose) Afterwards they decide to take a boat to their next destination. Sylvester has remembered he’s in this movie and prepares to dig in. But he’s caught by a ship hand and thrown in the galley to catch mice. The mice in question are Hubie and Bertie who are living a good life with all the cheese they can eat. Sylvester gives chase, but they use a bucket of soapy water to send him sliding off the ship. Even though he clasps on to the side, Tweety sadistically pries him off, sending him into the shark infested (badly animated water below) But he does throw him a life saver. (The things he does for Warner Bros.) The three drift to Australia. There, the passport is stamped by Hippety Hopper. (Why does he have a pouch?) And of course Sylvester thinks he’s a giant mouse. But this is also the home of the Tasmanian Devil who shows up and plans to eat some cat. Sylvester saves his hide, by encouraging him to team up so they can both get canary. They chase after the birds on a bike, (Taz really seems to be enjoying himself) but the birds make their getaway with a convenient hang glider. Sylvester leaps onto it, leaving Taz alone in the air. (He holds out Wile E. holding out a “mother” sign) The birds fly off leaving the cat stuck on the glider, but he bumps into a wind surfer. (Is that the flying fish from “The sour puss” on his sail?) The birds land atop it and ride to their next stop, San Francisco. With the putty tat still on their tails, the birds ride a skateboard through no color ville to escape. Sylvester hops aboard a trolley driven by Sam and shoves him out of the way. But he doesn’t really know how to work it, and ends up breaking the brake. (Which is sorta like winding the wind, or tearing a tear) With the vehicle out of control the two end up on Alcatraz much to Sam’s anger. The birds head off to Vegas, with Sylvester following on a train. (With an angry Sam chasing him the whole trip. He has great endurance.) Once there, Sylvester manages to get Sam taken away on another train, but loses the birds in Chalk Vegas. They are hiding in a casino which just so happens to be full of cats. They are all betting against Tweety. If they were to be spotted, they would probably chased down. Sylvester exposes their hiding spot and they are chased down. One cat catches Aoogah and I think Tweety shoves a pole up his butt. (What else could he have done?) Sylvester meanwhile has caused another cat to hit the jackpot. (Pussyfoot is with her, are they related? Also the kitten makes itself comfortable on Sylvester’s head. Adorable) The two head off again. (The Slasher also is outside. Is that other guy naked?) The two birds head off across the country collecting prints along the way. They eventually make it to New York. (It’s full of Looney Tune advertisments.) They stop for a hot dog at a cart that is by a strange looking man in a trench coat. Tweety asks a weird question to Aoogah. What kind of hot dog would she be? (what.) Sylvester is the vendor and plans to eat. During the scuffle, mustard is squirted all over the strange man, exposing him as Marvin. This gives the birds a chance to get to the airport. Tweety is sad that the fun is almost over, and decides for one more challenge, he’ll fly back to London on his own. He leaves his ticket with the stewardess and they head out. Sylvester meanwhile makes a pretty poor excuse for a poster that is framing Tweety as stealing the Passport. Good thing he showed it to a poor excuse for a cop who believes it. While this does not get him anywhere, he does get Tweety’s ticket. Guess he’ll meet them in London. The birds meanwhile have flown into a hurricane. Not only does it remove Tweety’s tracker, making the world believe he’s gone, (Now all they have left to enjoy is a man in a barrel. I’m not joking) but it separates the duo. And Aooga had the passport! Tweety feels sorry for himself, since it seems like he’s not going to win like he always does. He hears Aooga’s call and lands on an island in the eye of the storm. (Home of the worst CGI trees I’ve ever seen) Turns out the passport floats and after getting swarmed by some random cats. (Strange, but hey more prints) They fly off to London once more. Arriving in a pub, they are grabbed by the Slasher. Turns out he was behind the passport theft all along. (surprise surprise) He collects the things. He stuffs it in his pocket, and Tweety probably would have been lost if he was alone. But Aoogah snatches it back. The pollice arrive and the Slahser is forced to take off. Sylvester is with them, still clutching his poster. (I’m not surprised these guys believed it. They probably think all American posters are shoddily made.) Tweety has the passport and is presumed guilty. Sylvester takes it as Tweety is arrested and happily jumps in glee. But what’s this? There are two passports? And Tweety’s checks out. Leaving Sylvester holding the stolen one. Turns out the slasher stuck them in the same pocket he keeps his fish and chips in, and they got stuck together. (Gross. What was on those?) Sylvester won’t be a bother to them now, but Tweety is sad. According to the subtitle, it’s the 22nd. He’s late. But Aoogah points out that they crossed a time zone and actually it is the 21st! The subtitle was wrong! (ummm. The sun rises in the east. So if it’s really the 21st in London, wouldn’t it be the 20th in America?) They rush to the club. Rimfire points out that there’s only 79 prints. Tweety never managed to get Sylvester’s. Taking it back, he rushes to the police wagon and gets the last print! Rimfire reluctantly admits defeat. (And it turns out one of the other members was Cool Cat all along. And he knew Tweety would succeed. Only someone who is truly cool will admit he’s not the smartest.) For finding the missing passport, Tweety is knighted. (Not too absurd. There are King penguins) Sylvester however is off to prison.

Personal Rating: Looney-tics should have fun seeing how many characters are crammed in here. For them, 3. For the rest…3. (Only because I don’t have a 3.5 rating)

Holy Flucking Sheet! This is the second time today I’ve had to type this up! For no apparent reason, it didn’t save. This new squarespace sucks whale balls! I hope you appreciate this post readers. I do it all for you.

Bugs Bunny Superstar Part 2

Ready for the rest? We are told that during the war was when Bugs was at his most popular. A smart aleck who was not afraid of anyone and calmly told them to be gone or suffer the consequences? We rocked in the mascot department! Those Nazi’s were stuck with Swazie Tika the talking rock. (If you actually were believing that, then I’m worried about you. Please lay down) The next short they show is “Rhapsody Rabbit” (Nothing like saying how awesome a character is, before showing some of their work where they are not the victor) We are then treated to some of the hijinks that went on at the studio. Dancing, picking noses, and even kissing Porky’s @$$. (You better do that. He saved your company from the mouse) Then we are shown “Walky Talky Hawky.” Why question it? Clampett mentions that while Bugs is their biggest star, Porky was the first. Porky was actually based on a fat kid from his youth. (He was actually called Porky. What an honor.) As time went by, they put Porky on a diet to make him cuter. Then of course came Daffy. Clampett shows off the frames from the ducks’s first appearance (“Porky’s Duck Hunt”) that he drew. Before comparing it with Daffy’s strip tease from “The Wise Quacking Duck.” Since these two were so wonderful together, we are shown “My Favorite Duck.” Next they bring up Mel Blanc and his unfortunate carrot allergy, and how they tried every other vegetable they could. But only carrots sound like carrots. They show us “Hair-raising Hare” and immdiately afterwards show “The Old Grey Hare.” The end! The credits are also pretty funny. Look and see for yourself!

Bugs Bunny-Himself

Daffy-Daffy Duck

Porky-P-P-P-Porky P-P-Pig

Elmer Fudd-Elmer C. Fudd (Yes, I know his middle intial is really J)

Tweety-T. Pie

Sylvester-Felix Domesticus (Great joke)

Mr. Bogart-Fred C. Dobbs

Chicken Hawk-Henrey Hawk

Foghorn Leghorn-F. Licking Goode

Personal Rating: 3

Bugs Bunny Superstar Part 1

A 1975 documentary, narrated by Orson Welles of all people. It begins by showing us many of our country’s greatest landmarks. (The U.S.A. for anyone foreign visiting) One of which, is the studio that we know as Termite Terrace. The birthplace of the greatest cartoon character ever, (Porky may be my favorite, but based on greatness I can’t argue) Bugs Bunny. After showing us the short “What’s Cookin Doc?” Clampett tells us that the cartoons were made primarily for adults. (And yet, Watch mojo didn’t know this, putting Looney Tunes as the number one cartoon series made for kids that adults watch. morons) We see alot of awesome merchandise too. I want most of it. Okay, I want all of it. We learn that they were the only animation studio in the WB lot and as such, they were close to the greats. Clampett actually recalls seeing Jolson put on his make-up for the Jazz Singer. (Isn’t it a shame that the first talking film had racsism in it?) Being so close, meant that the stars would freqeuntly poke their heads in, to see what was being drawn. Doing this so often, of course meant that they would be caricatured. Clampett was teamed up with Tex Avery and they named their new HQ Termite Terrace. (So named, because of the dilapidated state of the place) They had good times as Tex and Friz Freleng tell us that they basically did waht they wanted. We’re then shown the short “A wild hare.” (Which for some reason is called THE wild hare here.) From the mid depression to the end of WWII was what they considered their golden age. A time when most of their characters were born. Back then, they had to be their own models for their drawings, so they could sketch the faces just right. We’re also told, tht despite the fact Bug’s carrot looks like Groucho’s cigar, the bit is actually based on Clark Gable eating a carrot in “It happened one night.” Saying that watching that scene, they didn’t see Gable, only a giant rabbit. They also acted out the scenes too, as we see Avery pretend to be a scarecrow. Mentioning Carl Stalling, we actually see some of his scores. But it’s more fun to listen to, and we are shown “A Corny Concerto.” (Finally. A short I talked about) But of course, Bugs wasn’t the only star there, as Clampett explains that Tweety was based on his own nude baby photos. He also mentions that the censors complained about Tweety being naked, and yet, they never noticed that Porky had no pants. (Porky is too cool for that) To end off part 1, we are shown the short, “I taw a putty tat.”

Part two will come someday. If you’re reading this in the futrure, then it may already be here. Go check it out.

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Deleted Scenes and Final Thoughts)

At least, these are the deleted scenes on my DVD copy of the movie.

Scene #1: An alternate opening. A Batman parody with Daffy as Batman and Elmer as some evil music composer type character. He plays a pipe-organ robot that destroys the city. The citizens running include: Ralph Phillips, Hercules, and Giovanni Jones. Porky and Speedy play the cops. Daffy easily stops Elmer, but the Warner Bros. stop this script reading there, stating that Daffy can’t kill Elmer. Daffy mentions that he comes back from the dead, and Elmer runs off crying in fear.

Scene #2: A bunch of romance scenes involving Kate and D.J., the funniest being Bugs and Daffy pointing out their obvious attractions. (Daffy: “He likes long walks on the beach…” D.J.: “You just made that up.” Bugs: “And she has a weakness for unemployed guys.” Daffy: “And he has a weakness for being unemployed.”)

Scene #3: A bunch of gags at Area 52. Including: Bug’s dressing up as a boxing referee, and getting two Daleks to fight each other, and D.J. feeding one of the fiends without a face to a triffid.

Scene #4: When Bob is holding Kate hostage on the Eiffel Tower, D.J. is constantly buying paperweights from a gift shop and throwing them at Bob’s head

Scene # 5: Kate having more of a sense of humor. Telling the “impatient cow knock-knock joke” and playing hairdresser with Gossamer. (Wait why wasn’t he in this movie?)

Scene # 6: A scene showing what happens at ACME when you don’t push your buzzer. Mr. Chairman has you wrapped up in plastic wrap.

Scene #7: Final scene. In this draft, the Blue Monkey apparently reverts something to an earlier state. At the temple, D.J. has turned his dad into a monkey so he can get away. Mr. Chairman rants about wanting to throw people into the lava, and Bugs getting zapped and turns into Proto-Bugs. (Great gag.) Daffy gets a hold of the diamond and accidentally turns Bugs and Kate into neanderthals. (Bug’s from “Mad as a Mars Hare”) Daffy accidentally aims at himself and becomes an egg. A whistle blows, and Bob leaves his shift and actually talks. Mr. Chairman pulls Taz out of a bag to frighten our heroes. D.J. aims at Mr. Chairman who claims it will only make him smarter, because of him being descended from geniuses. D.J. instead shoots Tweety who has been around this whole time. Mr. Chairman gets the diamond before realizing birds are descended from dinosaurs. The Tweetysaurus flies up and eats him, and Taz crumbles to bits.

Scene #8: Various Daffy gags. Naming restaurants he’s banned at, saying he has special needs, becoming part fly at Area 52, (thanks to Bugs) and various bits of him getting hurt at the temple.

These deleted scenes are very fun to watch as Bugs and Daffy provide the commentary.

Final thoughts: I love this movie! It has action, heart, comedy, cartoons, an entertaining villain, and I can watch it time and time again and not get bored. To me it is the best movie I ever saw.  Are there any problems I have? Well, yes. I still question Shaggy and Scooby being there, and I still hate the part where Taz farts. And I have a very personal problem of there not being enough Porky. But those are small complaints.

It’s a shame that this movie was a flop. But it might have been avoided if the W.B. had advertised it better.  If you’ve never seen this movie, then I think you really ought to. I don’t care who you are or what your preferences are, watch this film!

A fun little side note, you may or may not know this, but on the special features menu, you can highlight the water tower and find a scene of Sam blowing up. Eater egg!

Personal rating: Well, I hate to do this, but I’d probably have to give this film a 3 for the majority of people. It’s good, but I can’ see it converting anyone. Then again, if you are already a full-fledged Looney-tic, then all the cameos, in-jokes, and beautiful blending of live action and animation, earns this a 4. (If you’re me or my clone, then it’s a 5. And well deserved of that number.)

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Part 5)

Back at Acme, Mr. Chariman is gloating over the success of getting the phone. Damian still believes that D.J. will foil his plans. Mr. Chairman has the Peter Lorre scientist keep using a machine that makes Damien hit himself. Looking at the map photo, they see that Daffy got himself in the shot, making it useless. They decide to go face our heroes and bring their most dangerous operative: The Tasmanian Devil. (When the Vice President of “Never Learning” points out that he’s kinda dumb, Taz is allowed to eat him.)

In Africa, our heroes are making slow progress when who should appear? No not Inki. (That would’ve been an awesome but probably problematic cameo.) It’s Granny, Sylvester, and Tweety on an geographically incorrect elephant. (Yes, I know why they’re not using the African variety.) They offer them a ride. Bugs points out how they came at just the right time, and Granny and Sylvester share a evil look. Could THEY be Acme agents? The group take a safari and end up at the temple. Granny bids them farewell. (Phew. I guess they were all right.)

When they enter, Daffy sets off a booby trap by taking a small monkey-like object off a pedestal. Kate figures out that it’s a puzzle piece and quickly puts it into its spot. It reveals the path to the Blue Monkey as well as the gem itself. D.J. accidentally turns himself into a Capuchin monkey and Daffy tries to make off with the gem, but Bugs convinces him to change D.J. back. Then Granny and Co. show up and demand the diamond. Oh No! They were evil! Except not really. These were disguises! Granny and Sylvester reveal themselves to be Mr. Chairman and Bob. Tweety is Taz and he farts. (*sigh* I hate this part. Warner Bros. never had to reduce themselves to such immature humor in their heyday. If not for this blemish, the film would have been perfect.)

Mr. Chairman also reveals that he is really Damien! No wait, he’s Michael Jordan! No wait, he’s really MR. CHAIRMAN! (Funny.) Bob takes out a device that transports them all to Acme. Bob then reveals to Taz that he is really the Tasmanian She Devil. (Yeah, Taz was kind of wasted in this movie. Shame) At Acme, the transporting caused everyone to get spliced with one another. While we laugh, Mr. Chairman fixes everything, and finally gets the TV to work right. He shows that if D.J. does not give up the diamond, Damien will die by a train, exploding dynamite and an anvil. (But not the pendulum of doom. That’s overkill.) Wile E. overseeing all of this.

D.J. stupidly relents and Mr. Chairman does not release Damian. (Did you really expect him to?) He calls Marvin and tells him to go into space with the diamond. Marvin takes off and Daffy runs after him taking another ship that was being worked on by an Instant Martian. (I didn’t know they could talk.) To his dismay, Bugs is along for the ride. Back on the Earth, Mr. Chairman tells his prisoners that the gem will loaded onto a satellite that will turn everyone on earth into monkeys. (You gotta have really dedicated henchmen to go along with this.) Well not everyone. Mr. Chairman is going to be in a safe room with Mary as company. Told you she’d come back. (She doesn’t look too thrilled with her fate.)

Bugs and Daffy try get rid of Marvin by tricking him into rolling down his window so they can ask for directions. He is sucked out into space. (Daffy: Well whatya know, he fell for it. I guess I owe you 5 bucks.”) But Marvin is not gone yet, he’s clinging to the underside of their ship. They arrive at the satellite and Daffy volunteers Bugs to go get the diamond out of the other ship. Meanwhile, D.J. and Kate have been tied up and left hanging by a rope near Damian. D.J. easily breaks free before realizing that there was a reason it was so easy to escape. Releasing themselves also releases an Acme robo-dog. (He kinda looks like Chester.)

Bugs runs into Marvin again, and takes on his bubble gun with his carrot light saber. Daffy is cowering and wondering what to do? What would Duck Dodgers do? Realizing he IS Duck Dodgers, Daffy grabs a jetpack that blows up before he can say his name. (It happens four more times.) D.J. and Kate are barely able to escape the dog by hooking his collar onto a hook. D.J. just barely rescues his dad, and Wile (who was piloting the train) blows up with the dynamite. In space again, Marvin traps Bugs in one of the bubbles, and the satellite is about ready to fire!

Daffy gets caught between two of the pylons and his beak detaches again. Using his skills he has learned from this happening all the time over his career, he throws his bill, (ignoring the fact there’s no gravity,) and it lands on the laser, blocking it. The laser begins to backfire. Bugs escapes and dispatches Marvin with his own gun and the satellite begins to explode. Only two shots of the laser escape Daffy’s bill. One flies off into space never to be seen again. The other flies down to Earth and hits Mr. Chairman who was checking to see if everyone was monkeys yet. (Yeah, how was he supposed to know? Were the simians going to tell him?)

Daffy saves Bugs from floating away and they return to the ship. The others find a sobbing Mary with the monkey Chairman. (I guess she really did love him.) He is arrested and Damian and D.J. hug. They quickly leave when they see the rocket coming towards them, and in the chaos, Mr. Chairmonkey runs away. (Perfect for a sequel methinks!) Daffy and D.J. congratulate each other on each proving how awesome they are. Kate admits that she likes D.J. and Bugs congratulates Daffy on finally getting to be the hero. Daffy gloats that Bugs never got him into is movie when the entire building gets taken away.

Yes, this whole story WAS the movie and Daffy was not aware of it. (Ma bear  returns to bring Bugs a towel. Cute that she still has feeling for him.) D.J. punches out Brenden Fraser, (Laugh) and Bugs admits that Daffy and him should be equal from now on. (While he is being given a cavalcade of carrots by cameo characters including: Charlie Dog, Heathcliff the cat from “Dough Ray Me-ow”, the squirrel from “Much Ado about Nutting”, Marc Antony and Pussyfoot, Egghead, Mr. Gruesome Gorilla, and Hippety Hopper.) Daffy barely avoids a falling stage light, and comments that his luck is already improving. He is then crushed by the Looney Tunes rings. My man Porky comes out to say his famous closing line but his stutter is worse than usual, and everyone in the cast leaves. Porky: “Go home, folks.” Not until I’ve seen the credits!

We get a rockin’ song matched with some animation. (Some of which I’m guessing is from deleted scenes.) At the end of all this, we get a post-credits joke. Daffy is running form Nasty Canasta and Cottontail Smith in the casino and pulls a slot machine. It stops on three cherries. The thugs happily hold out their hats, but the cherries are really bombs and they blow up!

What a great movie! My favorite film of all time.

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Part 4)

A nice shot of France is shown. (Hey look. It’s Madeline. Clever) Our group is in the Lourve, and they come to the painting they seek. Not understanding what they are supposed to do, Kate sarcastically comments that they’ll have to steal it. (Which Bugs and Daffy are more than willing to do.) Playing with the card, they realize the back part comes off. It’s a window and when they hold it up to the painting, it becomes an x-ray. It shows her underwear (laugh) but also a map to Africa. That must be where the diamond is! They take a picture, (Daffy hopping up and down because he wants to take one) when Elmer appears.

Despite the fact Bugs and him made 35 pictures together. (No really. That’s the correct amount.) He’s “secwetwee evuw”. Bugs and Daffy distract him with card tricks while Kate and D.J. make their escape. Kate mentions that they’ll be all right because Elmer never gets Bugs. That’s what has kept their routine fresh all these years. D.J. is glad real life is different than films, because if this was a movie, then Kate would probably be kidnapped. Completely unaware of the fact that Bob has taken her.

The toons meanwhile, are chasing each other through the paintings. In “The Persistence of Memory” they are melting. (Hey, if the watches can melt, it’s hot enough.) It’s so hot that Elmer’s words become pictures. They run into “The Scream” and get yelled in the face. When Bug’s steps on Elmer’s foot, he makes the same face. (Creepy.) But while they are having fun experimenting with different animation styles, D.J. is still chasing after Bob. He alerts French policeman, Pepe Le Pew about the man carrying the woman away in a bag. But maybe he should have told a different guy. (Pepe is probably thinking that he now knows how to keep Penelope with him.) His scent  soon chases D.J. away.

Back in the Lourve, the trio chases each other into “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.” After they exit, Elmer is still pointalized and Bugs dispatches of him with a fan. At the Eiffel Tower, Bob takes Kate to the top. D.J., having lost too much time with Pepe, pulls out the controls for his spy pants and gets ready to fly up there. His pants fly away without him. Immediately, he is heckled by the three bears on vacation. Henrey wasn’t really being a jerk, (I mean c’mon. Who wouldn’t point out the hilarity of flying pants?) but D.J. steals the bear’s pants anyway. (And people wonder why Henrey turned out the way he did.)

Bob waves down a helicopter piloted by Beaky Buzzard. (So he’s also on Acme’s side? Too bad we don’t get more out of him. At least he has a line here. Unlike “Space Jam.”) Bob takes Kate’s phone and begins to fly away. Kate jumps on him, but loses her grip and falls. D.J. uses the spy phone’s grappling hook to grab her and swing themselves to a cafe where Bugs and Daffy are waiting. Kate hugs D.J. assuring us that they will end up together by the end of the film. Even though they lost the picture, Bug’s still has the card. They begin making plans for Africa! (Next week is the final part! Don’t miss it!)

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Part 3)

That night, our group prepares to sleep. D.J. and Kate show obvious signs of a relationship growing, and Bugs tries to persuade Daffy to come back to work. Daffy refuses, since it never ends well for him. He also points out that all Bugs has to do to get love is eat a carrot.

The next morning, they are stranded in Death Valley and are already starting to go crazy. To their shock and relief, they find a Walmart. (Bug’s comments on the fact that it’s obviously product placement.) They leave with new clothes, and drinks and are unaware that the Acme corp. is still watching them. Mr. Chariman’s dad suggests they use their desert operative. Said operative is their number one customer.

Wile E. is busy with his never-ending chasing of the Roadrunner when he receives the call. He spots the targets and orders a rocket launcher. It lands on him. He takes aim while Bugs is commenting on a wrong turn at Albuquerque, and launches the missile. It lands on top of him. Our heroes do not notice this. D.J. tells the others to go on back to California without him as he is still looking for his dad. Suddenly he vanishes into thin air. He walked through an invisible door and invites the others to follow him.

They find an area with many aliens from many B movies. “Day of the Triffids”, “Robot Monster”, “Fiend without a face”, some daleks, Robbie the robot, and an old man carrying a pod. (“They’re already here!”) It’s Area 51 right? No! That place was made up by the government to hide this place’s location: Area 52. This is all explained by someone named Mom who happens to know D.J. (I guess this is where the car was intent on taking him.) She also fills them (and us) in on the details of the Blue Monkey. Apparently, this gem has the amazing power to turn people into monkeys. Mr. Chairman wants this to make monkey slaves to make his products then turn them back into people to buy them.

Meanwhile, Wile is getting chewed out by Mr. Chairman who refuses to believe that Acme products are faulty. Then he sends a message to Marvin the Martian, who is also in Area 52. Mom (who is never stated to actually be D.J.’s mother. Could just be some cod name) is giving D.J. some spy gadgets like Spy Pants and a Spy Phone. She also tells them that the card Dusty gave them is necessary to finding the gem. She says, “The window lies behind her smile.”

Before she can tell them what that means without the riddle, they are alerted to the alien breakout that Marvin incited. Marvin demands the card, but Daffy takes it and bolts to the exit. The other three fight and manage to get out of there unscathed. Examining the card closer, they see that the queen on the card is the Mona Lisa. They decide to go to France to see if the real painting has any further hints. They get their easily by Bugs turning the screen like a page and PRESTO! Welcome to gay Paree!

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Part 2)

While Daffy continues east, Kate has arrived at D.J.’s house to ask if he knows where Daffy went. She finds Bug’s reenacting the shower scene from “Pyscho” and then learns that she fired the son of their biggest star. She cries and that is Bug’s one weakness: grown men crying. (“Especially when it’s a goil.”) He tells her about Daffy’s Vegas plans, and they leave in the real spy car. While they drive, Bugs screws around with the various buttons and ends up launching a missile, getting a martini, and activating formal wear mode. Wherein, he gets a tux and Kate is stripped down to a sexy dress.

Daffy and D.J. have arrived in Vegas. I guess they figured out where to find Dusty, as they immediately head to a casino owned by Yosemite Sam. Mr. Chairman tells Sam to get our heroes and the card, bribing him for his services with a treasure chest. On the casino floor, Foghorn introduces everyone to the entertainment: Dusty Tails. She sings and dances (with midgets dressed like Sam) and D.J. sneaks on stage to request her assistance. (Proving his relation to his father by smiling.) In her dressing room, (which has a horse) she explains that to find the Blue Monkey they need the help of a playing card. A queen of diamonds, to be precise.

Sam arrives with his henchmen, Nasty Canasta and Cottontail Smith. They give chase. D.J. does a pretty decent job at fighting, but the card still slips away and he jumps off a balcony after it. He crashes onto a Poker table where Spike, Chester, Barnyard Dawg, Charlie, Ham and Ex, and the Russian dog from “Hare Ribbin” are playing cards. He chases the card that ends up in a game of (Blackjack? I think?) He and Sam now have to play for it. The dealer is Foghorn and D.J. keeps claiming hit me, before Sam can. He demands that Foghorn hit him. Classic.

D.J. wins, and he and Daffy bolt. The gremlin falls apart and they are forced to leave on foot. Sam and his cronies steal a car from a NASCAR racer to further the chase, while D.J. and Daffy run into Bugs and Kate. During a pretty entertaining chase scene, all four argue. D.J. is mad at seeing Kate, she accuses him of stealing Daffy, and Daffy doesn’t want Bugs around. Eventually Sam has them driving towards a dead end. Daffy utters, “Mother” and the Spy Car’s autopilot kicks in, and it starts to fly to take them wherever there is.

Sam crashes into his casino and lands in a dark room. He lights a match, and finds a TNT stockade. He blasts off, flying past our heroes. Only now Daffy starts to suspect that THIS is really the spy car. Just as D.J. assures everyone he knows what he is doing, the car goes into a nosedive. They brace for impact, but the car stops just short of the ground. Bugs remarks, “Outta gas.” We start to fade out before Kate mentions that things don’t work like that. Fade in! The car crashes leaving them stranded in the desert.

Looney Tunes: Back in Action! (Part 1)

“It’s a little adventure I call: “Daffy Duck’s quest for the Blue Monkey!””

Great to be back. I’ve been waiting forever to blog about this. So let’s begin.

First: the plot. (I’m going to go into a lot of detail here.) Our film starts with magic: Elmer hunting for “wabbits.” Daffy, is of course changing the duck season signs to rabbit season. When Elmer shows up, Bugs does the classic switch line, and a quick montage of Daffy’s beak being blow off ensues. Daffy suddenly interrupts the cartoon. (But it was just getting to the good part!) He is reading a script, the script for this movie. He tells the Warner Brothers that this is a terrible idea for a film.

Bugs appears; he drops a few names. (I’m pretty sure it’s a tribute to Bob Clampett, Chuck Jones, and Mel Blanc.) He agrees to stay out of the movie, per Daffy’s request, but the vice president of comdey, Kate Hottan, (Jenna Elfman) says it can’t work without him. Daffy tells the studio heads to choose between the two of them, and he is promptly fired. (Look in the background. Poster’s for “Rabbit of Seville“, “Hair Raising Hare“, and “Baseball Bugs“.)

Elsewhere at the studio, (see this is already an improvement of “Space Jam“. It goes the “Roger Rabbit” route and makes toons real citizens. I love “Space Jam“, but even I can tell it’s not perfect. Confusing setting for starters.) A man named D.J. (Brendan Fraser) is auditioning for the role of a stuntman. (The Crusher is one of two people judging his performance.) He doesn’t get the job. We learn that his father, Damien, is the most popular star at the studio. D.J.’s main job is a security guard, but mainly because he doesn’t want to get any roles based on nepotism.

While washing a car, he sees Kate, escorting Daffy out. Bugs is following close behind. She tells D.J. to get rid of Daffy. While they chat Bugs switches places with Daffy because it’s funny, and Daffy escapes. D.J. goes after him in an amusing chase sequence. Daffy runs onto the set of a Batman movie and tries to steal the Batmobile. D.J. gets him but Daffy already turned the car on and it crashes into the water tower and floods the studio. (Hope the Warner siblings weren’t home.) D.J. is fired. (Sure it wasn’t his fault, but Daffy certainly isn’t going to vouch for him.) Kate and Bugs meanwhile, are at lunch.

Interesting cameos here. Porky and Speedy are currently out of work due to political correctness. Speedy I can begrudgingly understand. Not Porky. And unfunny? HOW DARE YOU! Heads will roll. Shaggy and Scooby are also there, telling Matthew Lillard they weren’t impressed with his live action role. One of my few problems with the movie. It’s an awesome joke that can only be pulled off in a movie like this, but why are they here at all? It’s called “Looney Tunes Back in Action”. I know that WB owns them, but they are not part of the title group! If you have to do this, go all out. Put in other Warner owned characters. Animaniacs. Teen Titans. The possibilities aren’t endless, but they’re tons of fun!

Bugs and Kate are discussing the movie. Behind them, Ralph and Sam are eating lunch together. Sam beats Ralph up for attempting to eat a sheep. Kate tells Bugs that he needs a female co-star. (Background images: pictures of Hugo the abominable snowman (“The Abominable Snow Rabbit”) Buddy, the Gremlin, (“Falling Hare“) and I think Chuck Jones. There’s also a poster for “Singing in the Rain” starring Bugs, Daffy, and Lola. Her only appearance in the film. And a missed opportunity for a special feature!) Bugs tells her that he plays females, as he demonstrates. This causes Michigan J. Frog behind him to start singing. Kate says that nowadays it’s creepy, and no longer funny. Wrong, woman. Bugs is one of the few guys who can do that and never look gay. (The demolition worker takes Michigan again. Probably going to try and sell yet another froggy evening.)

D.J. gets home and it turns out he lives next door to Granny, Tweety, and Sylvester. (Yes, she’s still played by June Foray.) Going inside, D.J. finds that Daffy followed him home. Daffy briefly bemoans the fact he was fired, but instantly perks up when he learns who D.J.’s father is. Even believing he’s a real spy. D.J. hears a ringing from his remote and turns on a recording of his father telling him to go looking for a diamond called the Blue Monkey, because Daffy was spot on: the acting was an act! He IS spy!. He also tells his son to locate someone named Dusty Tails in Las Vegas. Naturally, a promise of a diamond has Daffy volunteering to come along. They take a gremlin car that Daffy is convinced is a spy car. (The “Gremlins” theme plays. Brilliant easter egg.) They drive off, and with the space claer, the real spy car reveals itself.

At the studio, it’s pretty clear that the movie needs Daffy to work. Elmer actually ends up shooting Bugs! (And the rabbit is milking it for he’s worth.) Despite the fact that the heads were the ones who fired Daffy, they blame Kate. If she wants to keep her job, she needs to get him back by Monday. But that might be a mite difficult… After D.J. finally gets sick of throwing him out of the gremlin, Daffy mocks D.J. for being a security guard and D.J. tells him he’s really a stunt man, and did most of Brendan Fraser’s stunts. (Laugh, d*mn it!)

Bugs calls Daffy, saying that he can get his job back, but Daffy is not interested, telling of his plans to go to Vegas. Their conversation is being eavesdropped on by a company known Acme Corp. A man named Bob Smith tells the chairman of this news. The chairman (that’s his name, BTW,) has many Vice Presidents. Including ones for Rhetorical question, Child Labor, and Bad Ideas. (Steve Martin is hysterical here. You won’t convince me otherwise.) It’s revealed that he is the one who captured Damian and shows his people proof via camera. (After accidentally getting “I Love to Singa“.) He explains that soon he will be in total control of the world. (He also hits on one of his employees, Mary. Yes this is important.) He also tells his men to kill anyone who dares get in the way.

DUN DUN DUUUUUUUUN! Cliffhanger! If you don’t know the plot, please don’t go look it up elsewhere. I plan to continue tomorrow, I promise! (If you are reading this at a later time, then just read the next post. It’s finished, I promise!)