All the critics said this movie sucked. They said itís bland, over-hyped, and that director Danny DeVito misses too many opportunities to make this movie the quality piece of film it could be. But you always thought that Roger Ebert was just a fat, annoying bastard anyhow, didnít you?
Death to Smoochy is a smart, funny film that delves deep into the corrupt world of childrenís TV. Smoochy kicks things off with resident kids TV kingpin Rainbow Randolph (Robin Williams) being busted by the feds accepting bribe money, and he subsequently loses his hit show. Seeking a wholesome replacement to bolster the stationís Randolph-tarnished image, Nora Wells and Frank Stokes (Catherine Keener and Jon Stewart, respectively) scrape the bottom of the barrel of child entertainment, casting aside heroin addicts (among other miscreants) until they come across Sheldon Mopes, a.k.a. Smoochy, a.k.a. Edward Norton, performing to a bunch of junkies in a methadone clinic.
Soon after taking over Randolphís show, Smoochy learns that the business isnít all that itís cracked up to be, as he faces corruption, mob relations, and one bitter-as-Hell Rainbow Randolph desperately trying to win back his once-excessive adoration.
Death to Smoochy falters somewhat in DeVitoís overall direction for the film, closely following DeVitoís other efforts War of the Roses and Throw Momma from the Train, but the cast more than makes up for it. Norton is arguably the most versatile actor in film today, while Williams has always been a great choice for almost every role heís ever starred in (exceptions being made for Toys and Hook).
Death to Smoochy is a dark and twisted, funny in the I-really-shouldnít-be-laughing-at-this-sort-of-way film. Itís worth a trip to the theatre, maybe even worth some popcorn, and some gummy bears if youíre feeling saucy.