(out of 5)
Boring, unnecessarily heavy adaptation of the 1961 Disney classic animated film (which in turn was adapted from the novel by Dodie Smith) now has carefree dalmatian owner Jeff Daniels as a video game designer instead of a songwriter, and wife Joely Richardson as an employee in the fashion house of Cruella De Vil instead of just being his wife. These two puppy lovers find puppy love with each other and then have to prevent the evil Cruella (Glenn Close) from stealing theirs and others’ dalmatians to make a coat for her fur collection. Close bites her teeth into the role with delicious aplomb, and thanks to her the film has watchable and worthy moments (not to mention her eye popping wardrobe and hair designs). Otherwise it lapses into boring sequences involving De Vil’s bumbling robbers, and endless slapstick pranks involving both the human and canine stars.
Directed by Stephen Herek
Cinematography by Adrian Biddle
Produced by John Hughes, Ricardo Mestres
Music by Michael Kamen
Production Design by Assheton Gorton
Film Editing by Trudy Ship