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Rugrats Go Wild

movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Rugrats Go Wild

Starring: Jodi Carlisle, Michael Bell
Director: Norton Virgien
Rated: PG
RunTime: 81 Minutes
Release Date: June 2003
Genres: Animation, Kids, Comedy

*Also starring: Nancy Cartwright, Lacey Chabert, Melanie Chartoff, Cheryl Chase, Tim Curry, Elizabeth Daily, Flea, Danielle Harris, Julia Kato, Bruce Willis

Review by Steve Rhodes
2 stars out of 4

Smell-O-Vision was a bad idea when introduced a half a century ago and, even with today's advances in technology, remains a ridiculous concept. RUGRATS GO WILD!, in conjunction with their Burger King promotional partners, have glow-in-the-dark, scratch-off cards to go along with the movie. Whenever a numbers appears at the bottom of the screen, you are supposed to scratch off the image beside the number. The pictures on the card range from strawberries to hamburgers to old sox, but their smells are all uniformly rancid. (For the record, I'm a fan of Burger King's Whoppers, but, if they really smelled anything like they do on the card, I wouldn't go within a mile of them.)

RUGRATS GO WILD! but not quite wild enough. A sometimes awkward blend of two kids' TV shows, the sassy "Rugrats" and the visually lush "Wild Thornberrys," RUGRATS GO WILD! works best as a mindlessly silly kids' movie. What it lacks is the irreverent wit normally associated with the Rugrats, which appeals to kids of all ages, not just those in the single digits. In short, it needs more Rugrats and less Thornberrys.

The SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON story has the Rugrats shipwrecked on an island that the Thornberrys are busy exploring. They are in a real "drain forest," one of the Rugrat babies energetically remarks. It falls, as usual, to Angelica (voiced by Cheryl Chase) to deliver the best line. In disdain, she tells one of the youngest Rugrats, "You're just a backyard baby with a diaper full of dreams."

Most of the movie, however, resorts to slapstick to get the laughs. The babies pick their noses and eat the boogers. And, in the least tasteful scene, they moon their elders.

"I'm bored!" Angelica complains. Me too. The RUGRATS IN PARIS was well written and hilarious. In contrast, RUGRATS GO WILD! just limps along, offering little over typical television shows for kids.

RUGRATS GO WILD! runs a long 1:21. It is rated PG for "mild crude humor" and would be acceptable for all ages.

My nephew William, age 9, and his sister Liana, age 6, both liked the movie. He liked the submarine part best because he felt like he was driving the sub, and she liked the leopard best since she thought it was a little scary.

Copyright 2003 Steve Rhodes

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