Raul Julia, Anjelica Huston, Christopher Lloyd. They're creepy and they're kooky, mysterious and spooky, they're altogether ooky, The Addams Family ." The hit 1960s series was great fodder for these two 1990s box office smashes with great reincarnations of Gomez and Morticia Addams by Julia and Huston, and, of course, Christopher Lloyd as Uncle Fester. Includes The Addams Family (1991/99 min.) and Addams Family Values (1993/94 min.). Color/PG-13/widescreen.
The Addams Family
Director Barry Sonnenfeld (Men in Black) brings his distinctly cartoonish sensibility to this feature film version of the old Charles Addams comic strip. Anjelica Huston was born to play Morticia Addams, matriarch of the ghoulish Addams clan, while the late Raul Julia is a very agreeable, lusty Gomez. But it's Christina Ricci who arguably steals the show as their stone-faced daughter, Wednesday. As is often the problem with adaptations of comics or television shows, somehow an original story has to be implemented that doesn't clutter things up. But clutter is an issue here as the script gets tangled on a lame plot concerning efforts to steal the Addams' house and fortune. Still, it's fun to see an ideal cast reanimate an old favorite. --Tom Keogh
The Addams Family Values
This somewhat more cohesive follow-up to The Addams Family has the same director, Barry Sonnenfeld (Men in Black), but a better story line. Joan Cusack plays a busty gold digger who ingratiates herself into the Addams home and convinces Uncle Fester (Christopher Lloyd) that she wants to marry him. Besides Lloyd, the cast includes Anjelica Huston and Raul Julia, ideal as those Brontëan lovers, Morticia and Gomez. But Christina Ricci again walks away with the best moments as the chilly Wednesday Addams, making life miserable for two camp counselors (Peter MacNicol and Christine Baranski) who want her to fit in with other kids.--Tom Keogh