Reviewed by: Dave and Rebecca Kinder
Starring: Brendan Fraser, Alfred Molina, Sarah Jessica Parker, Robert Prosky, Jack Kehler | Directed by Hugh Wilson | Produced by John Davis, Joseph Singer, J. Todd Harris | Written by Hugh Wilson, Jay Ward | Distributed by Universal Pictures
A wonderful exception to the countless “live” action and animated films today that call themselves family friendly, but are not, is “Dudley Do Right”. Not since “Princess Bride” have we been able to honestly say “we enjoyed the movie, and so will the kids.”
The perhaps now classic cartoon hero, Dudley Do-Right, is wonderfully brought to life. Dudley (Brendan Fraser) is a bumbling and yet heroic Canadian mountie who, along with his comical and sometimes flatulent horse, “Horse”, fights his arch nemesis, Snidely Whiplash (Alfred Molina). All the while competing for the love of classic damsel-in-distress Nell Fenwick (Sarah Jessica Parker).
Director and writer Hugh Wilson, of “George of the Jungle” fame, does an excellent job bringing Jay Ward’s cartoon creations to life. From Dudley’s uniform and clumsy misfortunes to Nell’s “damsel in distress” attire (complete with bonnet) and Snidley’s villainous mustache and top hat. The acting is believeable and fun for a family movie. In fact, the movie could have been rated G except for a few loud actions scenes which may scare very young children.
The story opens with the characters being introduced as children, which immediately appeals to the younger audience. It is not long before the evil plot of the fully grown Snidely Whiplash summons Dudley to the rescue. The once peaceful town of Semi-Happy Valley is in danger!
“Dudley Do Right” is fun from start to finish with action and humor targeted at children, but equally fun for adults.
From a Christian perspective we didn’t notice any profanity or the all-too-common sexual innuendos that pervade so much of “family” films today. As to why this did not earn a “5” in the Moral Rating, it was not a Christian film. The values taught were simply that good guys win and bad guys lose. It even implied that sometimes good and evil are not always easy to tell apart, but good will win in the end.