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Inspector Gadget

Threat advisory: Guarded - General risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

During a daring rescue attempt, John Brown (Matthew Broderick), a rather naïve and clueless security guard, experiences the wrath of the evil Doctor Claw (Rupert Everett) and is left clinging to life. Jumping at the chance to put her robotics expertise to the test, the brilliant doctor Brenda Bradford (Joely Fisher) transforms him into Inspector Gadget - the ultimate crime fighting tool! And gadget is going to need every techno-trick up his cyber-sleeve to defeat the ruthless Claw - before Claw reduces our hero to spare parts and wreaks havoc on the world!

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Inspector Gidget (without the attendant deep and meaningful examination of the human condition).

Where does this film go wrong? Where to begin?!

A live-action feature length remake of a half-hour Saturday morning cartoon show needs to have more in it than just the characters, the gadgets (pardon the pun) and an overdose of colour and movement. It has to bring the zeitgeist of the times (ie the 90s: mobile phones, internet, roller blades, anti-heroes, anti-baddies...) and mesh them with the original concept (weird, wacky, technophilic adventures). Inspector Gadget has roller blades for one scene but only in passing. The hero is controlled by events rather than the other way round. The baddie exists only to cause events which can control the hero. There is no character, no personality and no depth. it is one-dimensional filmmaking at its worst.

The storyline (such as there is one) is hackneyed. The gags are mostly obvious and insulting to everyone's intelligence; once or twice a really good laugh slips through but you wouldn't want to hold your breath in between. The acting... well... I saw better performances in The adventures of Elmo. Matthew Broderick is blander than ever as Gadget and just plain strange as the evil Gadget android. I feel let down after seeing him in Election. Rupert Everett plays at being an evil cartoon mastermind but gets bogged down in the script. Joely Fisher (where do Americans get these names?) is just there to look pretty and scream a lot so it doesn't really matter what she does.

All in all, Inspector Gadget is not worth seeing unless you have too many children to look after over the weekend.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Disc: Single side, single layer
  • Languages: English, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Greek
  • Picture: Widescreen 1.85:1
  • Subtitles: English, French, Italian, Dutch, Hebrew, Icelandic, Croatian, English captions

Security censorship classification

PG (Low level violence)

Surveillance time

79 minutes (1:19 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

DVD rental: 21 February 2001
VHS rental: 21 February 2001
DVD retail: 12 June 2002
VHS retail: 12 June 2002
DVD retail: 17 September 2003
VHS retail: 17 September 2003

Cinema surveillance images

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