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Article

Death to Smoochy

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Death to Smoochy

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
108 minutes
Wide Release Date:
03/29/02
performer:
Edward Norton, Robin Williams, Danny DeVito, Catherine Keener, Jon Stewart
director:
Danny DeVito
Producer:
Danny DeVito, Andrew Lazar
distributor:
Warner Bros.
author:
Adam Resnick
genre:
Comedy

We gave it a D+

Set in the Barneyesque world of children’s television, this comedy of backstabbing overkill tells a moldy-oldie, not-nearly-as-nasty-as-it-thinks-it-is joke. ”Rainbow” Randolph Smiley (Robin Williams), the host of TV’s most highly rated kids’ show, is — get a load of this! — a big fake. Fired in disgrace, he takes vengeance upon his replacement, Smoochy, a cuddly singsong rhino played in a big fuzzy horned fuchsia suit by Sheldon Mopes (Edward Norton), a genial do-gooder. The director, Danny DeVito, hits you over the head with his thudding misanthropic bombast, and Adam Resnick’s script is so precious in its purple rage that it sounds like an overcooked cross between Bruce Vilanch and Clifford Odets. Even Williams’ meant-to-be-shocking rants come with quotation marks. D+