It’s been over twenty years since that creepy, kooky, mysterious, and spooky family graced the silver screen. But they’re back and ookier than ever. Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, Pugsley, and Uncle Fester get the animated treatment this time around, giving us a wild, weird, fun film about the family dynamic.
After they get married, Gomez (voiced by Oscar Isaac) and Morticia (voiced by Charlize Theron) move to New Jersey in a haunted asylum that is full of creaks, bugs, and a loud voice that keeps telling them to leave. They love it. They raise their two kids, Wednesday (voiced by Chloë Grace Moretz) and Pugsley (voiced by Finn Wolfhard) in this house without letting them leave the grounds and see anything beyond their property, which includes a graveyard, a conscience tree that wakes the kids up for school, and a pet lion.
The Addams house lives atop a mountain overlooking the brightly colored town called Assimilation, which is run by a psychotic T.V. show personality named Margaux Needler (voiced by Allison Janney). Needler sees Assimilation as her crowning achievement until she sees the Addams house. She then tries to convince the Addams to let her tear it down and make fit within the town.
Meanwhile, the Addams must deal with Wednesday who’s gaining a new rebellious streak after exploring Assimilation, and by rebel, I mean she starts wearing pink and feels happiness, as well as a whole slew of extended family to come into town for Pugsley’s Mazurka celebration, a Bar mitzvah-like ceremony that ushers Addams men into adulthood.
The Addams Family have been in pop culture since their T.V. show in 60’s and they’re a family that gets a new rendition for each generation. My parents grew up with the T.V. show and I grew up with the Raul Julia and Anjelica Houston-led films of the 90’s. This new Addams will be the one for the next generation. It may not be as gothic and weird as 90’s version, but what this version does, which is the central theme for all the Addams films and shows, is show the closeness of the family. It shows how much they care for each other and how much they support each other, even if they do it in incredibly bizarre ways. The love between Gomez and Morticia isn’t as in your face as we’ve seen in the past, (Gomez never kisses up and down Morticia’s arm, something I oddly missed) but we still see the love. Even after fifty years, the Addams still show us the loving bond between a family is unique to each family.
The film is hit and miss on its laughs. There were some lines that were hilarious and some that were genuinely cringe-worthy. The plot moves pretty quickly and the lessons throughout the film about individuality and the family dynamic are nice and hopefully something kids will take something from. There is also a theme of gentrification that adds another layer to the film.
The cast is great and their voice work is solid, with Moretz and Janney doing the best work. With this cast, I almost wish the film was live-action. Isaac and Theron would have been better served in a live-action film as they look simply perfect for their respective parts. I also don’t think the animation was utilized to its fullest ability. A lot of the things that happened they could have done if done in live-action, so why not go full bananas and utilize the animation to elevate the kookiness?
The Addams Family brings the iconic gothic family to a new generation. This is a fun movie for both kids and adults and a perfect Halloween kids flick for this time of year.
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