Flubber, Flubber The Absent Minded Professor, Flubber movie review, Movie Review, Rilm Review

Michael A. Maynez photo


Flubber was a whimsical comedy in 1961, under the title of "The Absent Minded Professor" with Fred MacMurray as the lead, and he had a way with whimsy and his old flibber of a car whizzed through the air as jauntily as his character. Now thirty-six years later Robin Williams, so desperately lost in this piece of recreation, even giving him a Thunderbird for a car doesn't help any. The slimy green goo that is his invention looks like that cookie dough-boy and I am sorry there is only so much you can take of his cuteness.

He is also given a new friend an airborne computer named Weebo, later Weebette, who becomes increasingly alarming as a comedic gadget. Through him we are reminded of so many Disney movies, like a trivia game. Williams is given a romantic interest, Marcia Gay Harden, playing a woman left by Williams waiting at least three times at the alter. A college foreclosure, the proverbial do or die basketball game. The bad guys trying to steal his formula. Ted Levine and Clancy Brown looking like leftovers from "Home Alone III". Christopher McDonald as the low end of the love triangle had one funny moment. When he swallows Flubber, you are not left to wonder how Flubber will exit. Flatulency being the easy way out, didn't Eddie Murphy do this bigger and better in "The Nutty Professor", another remake. At least that was the only big laugh the kids at the theatre registered, after all this is Disney family oriented theatre.

I certainly hope that Williams finds a good vehicle soon, maybe just maybe his forthcoming role a bit more serious in "Good Will Hunting" with Matt Damon will help. His comedic ability seems to be ebbing, certainly "Father's Day", another remake of a French movie that really worked, didn't for him. Flubber has too much BLUBBER and not enough fun. It is disgraceful when everyone tries to be funny, especially the main lead. The opening credits were very amusing, using all the formulas, it almost indicated that this could be an interesting comedy, instead of comedic crisis.

Flubber The Absent Minded Professor
Walt Disney Pictures
Produced by: John Hughes, Ricardo Mestres
Directed by: Les Mayfield
With: Robin Williams, Marcia Gay Harden, Christopher McDonald, Raymond J. Barry, Clancy Brown, Ted Levine
Co-producer: Michael Polaire
Executive producer: David Nicksay
Costume designer: April Ferry
Music by: Danny Elfman
Film editor: Harvey Rosenstock
Production designer: Andrew McAlpine
Director of photography: Dean Cundey
Screenplay by: John Hughes, Bill Walsh
Rated: PG
Released 26 November 1997 wide
Soundtrack available on from Walt Disney

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Original Date Wednesday 26 November 1997
Updated Wednesday 26 November 1997