A washed up Hollywood detective must get over his hatred of toons when a cartoon rabbit is framed for murder.
Starring: Bob Hoskins, Christopher Lloyd
Director: Robert Zemeckis
I love the idea that just over the fence from a studio lot in Hollywood, there’s a place called Toontown. Frankly, the toons are often kinda scary, but they’re so loud, silly, entertaining and sweet… they’re great.
At heart, this film centres around Eddy Valiant (Bob Hoskins), a private detective who reluctantly gets embroiled with the case by a studio executive, and who hates toons since one killed his brother, who was also his business partner. Eddy hasn’t been the same since, drinking and barely surviving. He comes across as very likeable, but troubled, and his frustration with the cartoon creatures around him is amusing.
The famous Rabbit of the title is both funny and irritating, but the relationship between him and his beyond stunning wife, the famous Jessica Rabbit, is the stuff of legend. He’s shorter than her, ridiculous, clownish. She’s stunning, all woman and appears to be a femme fatale. But they adore each other, genuinely, and their romance often makes the lists of the best loves in film history.
This film is a joy to watch, because the animation over live action is so seamless. The sight lines are perfect, the interaction between real and animated characters is perfect, the shadows cast and the movements of objects by cartoons is so natural. It’s wonderful stuff. And the bad guy, Judge Doom (Christopher Lloyd) is so terrifying (I’m scarred for life by the scene where he kills a shoe), twisting the plot around his little finger as he and his cartoon cronies search for Roger. Even after about three decades, this film stands the test of time.
Why Is It A Must See? Traditionally, Disney and Warner Bros. are arch rivals, since their characters had the same target audiences. This is the only place you’ll see Bugs and Mickey have a conversation, or see Daffy and Donald get into a fight. An incredible feat to get the rights to make this film, and get the agreement of the IP’s owners for the characters to interact.
See It If: This film is a bit of a crowd pleaser, and should make fans of 80’s movies happy as well as children or animation fans.