- compiled by Jeffrey Overstreet Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2002 1 Jan
For those who cringe at the thought of a movie based on literature, there is plenty of lame-brained commercial product ready for audiences.
There's the live-action version of
The theme song for the
Nobody has ever considered
Mary Draughon (Preview) objects to "drug references … form-fitting outfits that reveal and emphasize cleavage … flatulence … scary occult phenomena, and drug use."
Michael Elliott (Movie Parables) says, "Director Raja Gosnell … keeps things light and frivolous, although it would appear that the target audience he is interested in attracting are those who have grown up with Scooby rather than today's youngsters. I can't imagine any producer or director purposely including as much cleavage as fills this screen with the intent of attracting the under-10 set."
Bob Smithouser (Focus on the Family) says, "Morally and artistically, it's a chaotic mess.
Ted Baehr (Movieguide) says it "violates some of the principles that made the original television series so popular. The violence at times is too intense. The college weekend is too salacious. Some of the scary moments are over the top for a children's movie. Furthermore, the phantasmic protoplasm monsters are real, breaking one of the cardinal rules of the Scooby-Doo series." But Baehr distinguishes himself as perhaps the only critic to praise Freddie Prinze Jr. performance as "terrific."
Phil Boatwright finds it odd that people would accuse the film of being worse than the cartoon. "It was and remains obnoxious television. Now that it has been turned into a big-budgeted enterprise starring Buffy the Vampire Slayer and her gnome-ish real-life boyfriend, I'm convinced that there is no longer hope for future generations. It's merely a matter of time before society reverts to cave dwelling. The only comic in the bunch is Rowan Atkinson and he's not given anything to do. Good thinking, Warner Bros."
Mainstream critics got creative with their putdowns. Dave Poland (The Hot Button) says, "I almost want to see the movie again to be sure that it is as completely devoid of value as I feel it is." And Meg van Huygen (The Stranger) calls it "insulting and excruciating … an innocent cartoon has been defiled for no reason. Fred and Daphne have this sexual undercurrent, Shaggy and Scooby have a fart contest, and Velma gets drunk with some dude. It's cheap and desperate."from Film Forum, 06/27/02
Last week, I mentioned having difficulty finding a religious press critic who was not thoroughly disgusted with the movie version of
But Mike Parnell (EthicsDaily.com) says that