The Addams Family returns in a Mostly Kooky Reboot


October 11th marked the release of The Addams Family, an animated take on the classic comic, starring the voices of Charlize Theoron, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Finn Wolfhard. The show follows Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, Pugsley and Uncle Fester as they square off against a reality television show host. The family is comfortable with their style of living, though it horrifies everyone else in their neighborhood. They are preparing for a visit from their extended family to celebrate Pugsley’s “sabre mazurka”, a rite of passage that marks the transition from boy to man in the Addams family. Meanwhile, Wednesday struggles with growing up, terrifying her mother with her newfound love of pink barrettes and malls. As the family grapples with the changes that occur when their children get older, their neighbor constructs a fake neighborhood to be used for a reality TV program- and is angered that the family’s eccentric way of living will destroy her dreams of reality TV stardom.

In the past, movies about the Addams family have had a sort of  “dark humor but in a kid friendly way,” which has made them appealing to audiences of all ages. Seeing that this remake is animated, I thought it would be interesting to see how they change the format for even younger children. Studios that produce animated movies have a set formula for producing said movie— they first create a set of quirky protagonists struggling with fitting in with society. Next, they add in some jokes that are only funny for people forty-eight inches or under. Sprinkle in a little bit of glaringly obvious political commentary, and voila! A guaranteed blockbuster. It seems that studios are incapable of making a movie that does not allude to Donald Trump’s presidency and/or the fact that cell phones are ruining society.

`    Though The Addams Family does little to break the mold, it is definitely better than some of the other garbage that animation studios are churning out (I’m looking at you, Trolls.). Perhaps it was a sense of nostalgia that drew me to the movie, but it was funny, in a cynical sort of way. Snickers were heard throughout the theater when a group of students sang, “Why would you be yourself when you could be like everyone else?” The political subtext is by no means subtle— I mean, come on, a reality TV star with ugly hair who wants the Addams’ to leave the city because they’re different?- but it does a good job of executing this theme in a way that does not feel overly forced. In all, it’s a good movie to watch on Netflix when you’re bored, but it’s not worth the time or money to view it in a theater- unless you find yourself with a bunch of third graders and a lot of free time.