With Halloween upon us, so are Halloween movies. Unlike most of these films that are chock full of horror and jump scares, ‘The Addams Family’ is far from that. Based on the 1960s comic and television show, the film focuses on the eccentric and questionably supernatural escapades of the titular family. The latest addition to the macabre franchise sees the slightly supernatural family move to New Jersey and shack up in a derelict asylum, The Addams’s are subsequently forced to deal with the more normal people around them and hijinks ensue. In this film, there are plenty of positive messages for younger kids to take away. The film generally promotes its acceptance of difference and the varying definitions of abnormality. This comes into play with the Addams family growing to accept and adapt to their new surroundings and those around them to accept the eccentricity of the family.
The film clocks in at a little over 1 and ½ hours, but that substantial runtime honestly does little to help redeem the film’s unfortunate quality. When including reputed actors such as Oscar Isaac and Charlize Theron, one would expect remarkable voice performances from the actors, but they deliver the exact contrary; with bland, uninteresting voices (especially when compared to Raul Julia of the ‘90s adaptation) the film lets you know why exactly those actors were there: the paycheque. In addition to this, the film somehow manages to feel and read like an early draft of ‘Hotel Transylvania’ with a coat of Addams Family slapped all over it. The jokes are far from stellar and the actors are so obviously uninterested by the film’s derivative and poor writing.
However, there are a few bright spots in the movie. Don’t get me wrong, while the actual plot of the movie is unsurprisingly predictable, the animation remains fantastic, with the art design being horribly macabre and creepy while also somehow being domesticated- which I’m sure kids will enjoy. The disappointing aspect of this is that the vibrant art design was indicative of what the movie could have been.
All in all, ‘The Addams Family’ is an unfortunate casualty of Hollywood’s needless obsession with remakes and retelling, falling flat on its face with uncharismatic performances and humourless writing, making it a decent enough way to waste away an afternoon.
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