The Flintstones

Considering the 32 writers (including Tom S. Parker, Jim Jennewein, and Steven E. de Souza) who worked on this live-action adaptation of the 60s Hanna-Barbera cartoon series about a Stone Age family, one might have expected a few funny lines here and there, but this is mirthless (and worthless) from top to bottom. If the original cartoon series was a bargain-basement rip-off of TV sitcoms like The Honeymooners and I Love Lucy, getting real actorsJohn Goodman, Rick Moranis, Elizabeth Perkins, Rosie O’Donnell, and Elizabeth Taylorto imitate already derivative and reduced cartoon figures makes this an exercise in futility, and the cliched script doesn’t begin to justify the conceit. The architectural look of the moviemainly southern California tacky, with most of the stone made to resemble plastichas some minor novelty but it quickly wears off, and the morphing effects mainly seem motivated by a desire to fill the screen at all costs. Brian Levant directed, if that’s the word. (JR)

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