Flashback Review: Dudley-Do-Right (Universal’s Flops Vol. 1 #9)

“Dudley-Do-Right” was released in 1999. (same year Joey King was born) It was critically panned and labeled as a box office flop.

Brendan Fraser (one of my favorite actors growing up) will co-star with Leonardo DiCaprio & Robert De Niro in Martin Scorsese’s upcoming film “Killers of the Flower Moon.” Slated to stream in 2023 exclusively on Apple TV. Mr. Fraser will also star in Darren Aronofsky’s “The Whale.” I’m sad a “Batgirl” film got cancelled, due to a negative reactions from a test audience. I’ll never be able to see Brendan square off with Michael Keaton’s Batman and his protégé who deserves a proper role. Pretend Alicia Silverstone’s Batgirl never happened.

It doesn’t matter if SPOILERS are listed. This movie is a clunker.

Right & Wrong Aspects

Right: Brendan Fraser, Alfred Molina, Sarah Jessica Parker & Eric Idle (Monty Python) all did a solid job for their respective performances.

Fun Fact: Brendan also worked with another Monty Python star in a live-action adaptation of a Jay Ward cartoon. John Cleese voiced Ape in “George of the Jungle.”

Cinematography never succumbed to any technical difficulties.

Jokes are a hit and miss. Whip has some funny moments. I think Al was born to play the role of Whip other than Doc Ock. I also liked a dance scene with Dudley & Whip fighting over Nell. It would’ve given this scene Bonus Points if the Beastie Boys (one of my favorite bands) made a cameo performing “Body Movin’” with Fatboy Slim’s remix. Just like Tom Jones’ appearing as himself in “Mars Attacks.”

A Fart Scene made me chuckle. Besides a fart joke, another joke that made me laugh is Whip’s henchmen are too stupid to realize Dudley’s initials. Guesses are Dom DeLuise, Daniel-Day Lewis, Doris Day, David Duchovny & Snoop Doggy Dogg.

My favorite line is when Dudley looks in the mirror shouting… “I am a vampire!”

Opening Credits retains the classic cartoon’s hand drawn format.

The Narrator mentioned Eric’s character Kim Idle, owns a “Pokémon” collection. Coincidentally, “Pokémon: The First Movie” came out in 1999. Unfortunately, it’s a miscalculation.

Dudley and the Indians use rocks to overwhelm Whip’s army even though they got guns. EGADS! They’re making the Battle of Endor” forgivable. You know the part in “Return of the Jedi” with the Ewoks easily beating Stormtroopers sticks and rocks?

While taking a mud bath, Whip says “If the shoe fits.” Reminds me of Woody’s line from “Toy Story 2.” “Well if the boot fits.” By the way, Pixar’s best film also came out in 1999.

Regis Philbin (may he Rest in Peace) & Kathie Lee Gifford make cameo appearances as themselves.

Wrong: Dudley & Whip’s roles are reversed. Whip only does legal stuff as a businessman such as giving gold to a penniless town drunk, hiring people to run his city. It’s like Doctor Doom (from Fantastic Four) being a nice guy running a food company like “Newman’s Own in his birthplace Latveria, instead of taking over the country as a power-hungry warlord. Can you picture Doom’s face replacing Paul Newman’s on the logo? Feels totally out of character. Dudley partakes in illegal activities by sabotaging Whip’s businesses. Dudley lampshades it’s not right (no pun intended) for him. Heck, the entire plot is nonsensical. I have to Triple Down this con for breaking my Suspension of Disbelief!

Pacing felt fast as if the Cast & Crew wanted to finish this movie so bad they know it’s terrible or as Cleveland from “Family Guy” pronounces it as “Turrible.”

Cartoon Sound Effects can be annoying at times.

A Love Triangle between Dudley & Whip trying to win over Nell is pointless. I don’t care if she’s a gold digger, Nell’s better off with the latter. At least he doesn’t do anything wrong.

How the actual heck did Dudley’s horse survive the wildness offscreen? He randomly appears during The Climax as a Deus Ex Machina. even the Indian Chief thinks it’s ridiculous. Dudley managed to defeat Whip by dodging the missiles so the two tanks can accidentally hit each other. If this were real life, Dudley would’ve died.

Unlike the cartoon, Nell never gets kidnapped and tied up on a train track.

When Dudley trims a bush to resemble Nell, Born to be Wild” is used. Ugh! It’s one of the most overused songs in cinema! I’d rather listen to Mötley Crüe’s “Live Wire!”

The Townspeople shun Whip in favor of Dudley ignoring the fact, the latter is wanted for property damage and applied toilet paper all over Whip’s golf course.

Total running time is approximately an hour and seventeen minutes. The equivalent of a television drama episode’s duration. Not enough for a live-action comedy. An animated movie gets a pass if its seventy something minutes. I consider a live action movie total running time from an hour and a half to three hours plus. Short answer is in fact, Dudley-Do-Right is a failed pilot episode.

The Final Verdict: D-

Dudley-Do-Right is one of the worst TV-based films of 1999 along with “Inspector Gadget” & “My Favorite Martian.” If you wanna watch a better movie based on a Jay Ward cartoon, I highly recommend George of the Jungle and “Mr. Peabody and Sherman.”

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