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The Addams Family review: this painfully generic movie deserves no snaps

The Addams Family The 1960s TV show, a 2010 Broadway musical, or a set of 1990s movies directed by Barry Sonnenfeld. But the "creepy and kooky, mysterious and spooky" family has begun life as a series of satirical cartoons drawn by Charles Addams and published in The New Yorker between 1938 and 1988. The hook of the glossy Addams cartoons, capturing the tentacled train of Morticia's dress, Gomez's rotund figure, and Wednesday's oval face in perfect verisimilitude.

Yet even as animation veterans and Sausage Party co-directors Conrad Vernon and Greg Tiernan hark back to the origins of The Addams Family they fail to capture the spirit that the clan seeks a hit to begin with , The Addams Family is not a scream, it's a painfully generic kids' movie.

Like most soft-pedaled children's movies, their Addams family makes a vague gesture toward a meaningful life lesson ̵

1; in this case, a timely message about the importance of recognizing people's humanity, regardless of their differences. The movie places the Addamses in the 21st century to make a difference in paranoid neighborhood watch groups. The Morbid Sensibility of the Addams Family serves as a metaphor for any kind of otherness that avoids bigots from seeing their neighbors as equals. It's a welcome thematic centerpiece, one that almost achieves a genuine sense of poignancy. Unfortunately, The Addams Family is so bland, unfunny, and poorly structured that even the best intentions can not elevate it.

Gomez Addams (Oscar Isaac) and his proudly icy bride Morticia (Charlize Theron), the film leaps ahead of the classic Addams Family status quo. Gomez and Morticia are happily ensconced in a ghoulish haunted house with their murderously deadpan daughter Wednesday (Chloe Grace Moretz) and their explosively dangerous son Pugsley (Finn Wolfhard). Loyal servants Lurch and Thing are there, too. And since Pugsley's impending "Saber Mazurka" – a sort of bar mitzvah-esque coming-of-age ceremonies involving a sword dance – Goth's Brother Fester (Nick Kroll) and his mother Grandmama

The impending influx of Addams's details with the second half of the plot, which involves a cookie-cutter subdivision that pops up just a stone's throw away from the Addams' mansion , HGTV-eque designer Margaux Needler (Allison Janney), who plans to sell all 50 of his houses during a live TV special, says: "The Assimilation" (no points for subtly) is the brainchild of manically perky. She's worried that the dilapidated Addams manor is eyesore that could scare away potential buyers. Gomez and Morticia, meanwhile, are nervous about venturing back to outside world that has literally burned them before. [Thejuxtapositionofthemacabrewiththesuburban The Addams Family The Transylvania [Addtomywishlist franchise.)

Photo: Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures

Yet that's just one more than half a dozen subplots crammed into the movie's 87-minute run time. The Addams Family does not feel like a narrative as a series of Saturday morning cartoons spliced ​​together. Margaux's rebellious daughter Parker (Elsie Fisher) takes on an exploratory mission into the world of teenage girldom. The unlikely friendship inspires Parker to reject her mother for some more emo, while Wednesday enacts her own form of teenage rebellion by embracing girlish conventionality.

It's a fun idea that brings Wednesday and Morticia's mother / daughter relationship to the forefront in a way Sonnenfeld's films never did. There's even some intriguing queer subtext in Wednesday and Parker's relationship. [194559004] The Addams Family Wednesday's storyline unceremoniously peters out.

Another Big Reason The Addams Family A young girl in a rainy day is because of the flat, weightless look of its animation. The visual highpoint comes in the opening moments, with a montage of Morticia's beauty routine that involves smearing her parents' ashes on herself as makeup. The rest of the film matches that level of ghoulish creativity. Apart from the occasional clever detail, like the way Wednesday's pigtails into the nooses, there is not much in the way the characters are brought to life. The Addams Family looks more like a 1990's PC game than a big-budget feature.

The vocal performances are lifeless. Few members of the impressively star-studded cast make any kind of impression. Snoop Dogg as the voice of Cousin Itt, given that he delivered only a handful of vocally modulated lines, is in Itt's signature high-pitched gibberish.) Isaac, Theron, and Moretz are clearly trying their best, but they are not happy with it. Even one of the jokes are terrible, "Vernon and Tiernan" (working from a screenplay by The Christmas Chronicles 'Matt Lieberman and Corpse Bride ' s Pamela Pettler) fail to create any kind of successful comedic timing.

Photo: Goldwyn Mayer Pictures

Only Janney rises above the lackluster material to deliver a genuinely scene-stealing villainous turn. This is not her first animated role (in other things, she voiced the anxious starfish in Finding Nemo ), but she makes an effective case that she should be a regular in the medium. She knows how to give a performance. Addams Family Story feeling like the Norman villain is more memorable than the Addams tribe.

To be fair The Addams Family isn ' t gone worse than a generic animated kids fare that hits theaters these days. It just feels like a big disappointment than, say, The Secret Life of Pets 2 because other creators have done so much more with these characters. Though the film pulls its aesthetics from the original cartoons, The Addams Family is a strategic attempt to reach a generation that was raised on the 1990s Sonnenfeld films, and now they have kids of their own. The Addams Family just used as an argument for revisiting the originals instead.

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