Space Jam (1996)

PG   |    |  Animation, Adventure, Comedy


Space Jam (1996) Poster

In a desperate attempt to win a basketball match and earn their freedom, the Looney Tunes seek the aid of retired basketball champion, Michael Jordan.

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6.4/10
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  • Michael Jordan at an event for Space Jam (1996)
  • Michael Jordan in Space Jam (1996)
  • Michael Jordan and Deanthony Langston in Space Jam (1996)
  • Space Jam (1996)
  • Space Jam (1996)
  • Michael Eisner at an event for Space Jam (1996)

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30 December 2002 | bob the moo
Good cartoon with plenty for adults – more than just selling products
A group of aliens arrive in Loony Tune world and challenge the inhabitants to a battle for the ownership of that world. Seeing the aliens are tiny, Bugs Bunny decides a game of basketball should be easily won. However the aliens steal the talent from several NBA players and look set to win easily. However Bugs and Daffy kidnap Michael Jordan and ask for his help.

At the time of release I must admit that I wasn't keen on seeing this film as the whole merchandising thing had left me with a sour taste in my mouth, putting me off the film. Happy Meals and such were everywhere! Later I saw it on TV, away from all the hype and found it enjoyable but not great. The plot is silly, but who cares – it's a cartoon. The comedy is good and has plenty for kids with the cartoon characters doing cartoon things, but also for adults. The film is full of in-jokes for adults ranging from a 3 second spoof of Pulp Fiction to some really funny lines – `oh great, no one told me Dan Aykroyd was in this film' when Bill Murray makes an appearance, was my favourite. Also as a big basketball (and Knick) fan it was fun to have tonnes of basketball stars make fun of themselves as well.

However it is a cartoon at heart and I imagine that those who don't like pratfalls etc and aren't basketball fans won't be laughing all the time. Also, surprisingly for Jordan's first film, the basketball action is pretty poor. I know it didn't have to be realistic but the great man is amazing enough in action without giving him amazing rubber arms etc with special effects.

Jordan is good and is a better actor than others I've seen, but he is only playing himself and not that naturally either! The support cast is where the money is and they all work well. Whether it be the cartoon characters or adults they all do what they have to. De Vito is funny and Randle is sexy but as usual Murray steals each and every scene he is in!

Overall this manages to be more than a sales drive for Happy Meals (although the McDonalds product placement is a bit tasteless – hey! Just like the burgers!) and is an enjoyable film. The kids will be happy with the cartoon element and most adults will like the in-jokes and the NBA players making jokes at their expense.

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Animation | Adventure | Comedy | Family | Fantasy | Sci-Fi | Sport

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