There was a time, not so long ago when the idea of the reboot/remake was not something that came about every five seconds. Sure ideas were reused and redone, but before it was a love of the source material that inspired the work, not just studio profit. One such positive remake came in the early nineties when a group of people decided to re-imagine America's strangest family on the big screen.
Based on the cult sixties comic strip series of Charles Addams' cartoon family, The Addams Family brings the Gothic and peculiar bunch into the modern age. With parents Gomez and Morticia, children Wednesday and Pugsley along with eccentric Grandma Addams. In this version Uncle Fester has been missing from the family home for twenty five years. Scheming businessman Tully decides to send in a Fester look-a-like to take his place and steal the family wealth. As imposter Fester spends time with the unusual bunch, he grows to like them and perhaps finds where he is meant to be.
As with any good reboot, the film has an overall faithful tone. Staples such as Gomez and Morticia's romance, Pugsley's dangerous experiments and Wednesday's isolation are all present. What this film does is merely move the family into the modern age, rather cleverly contrasting the old school Gothic style of the family to contemporary American suburbia and deriving a great deal of fun from the ways in which modern society reacts to the family. Despite being morbid, the Addamses are lovable, and the writing makes the the "normal" everyday folk around the Addamses feel more like the weirdos.
With a great ensemble cast that not only masterfully retain the look of the original cast, but gives each of them a new edge. The superb Raul Julia, the intoxicating Anjelica Huston, and the great Christopher Lloyd, as well as Christina Ricci in her first prominent role. The film was a great success and was followed by a pretty good sequel and a brilliant animated series, not to mention an awesome Super Nintendo game.
A well done reboot that brings all the quirk and charm of the series, but repackages it all for a new generation. A good story and a brilliant cast of actors make The Addams Family a great family film.
And if you too are a fan of the mysterious and spooky Addams Family writer, Larry Wilson has launched his own Web series. Visit the CINDY page to meet the modern day take on the shoe-losing damsel in distress.