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This is a great movie if you want to know what movies were like back in the 70s. There’s so much slapstick comedy and just funny stuff compared to today that it will keep you laughing for the entire time. A great watch for the whole family.
I have not seen this movie for quite a few years, and the computer made me snicker a little, but it was every bit as entertaining as I remember. The action and dialog are simplistic for this day and age, but it is good, clean fun that all ages can enjoy. No 'hit the mute button and put hands over the eyes' needed for even the youngest viewer. I recommend this movie if you long for the days when kids were kids and not jaded mini-adults!
This movie is typical of the live-action Disney fare from the 60s and 70s. Harmless fun based on a silly premise. Kurt Russell was always so fun to watch in his Disney movies. This is the type of movie that was on Sunday nights when I was a kid and afterwards on various local stations and finally on the new Disney Channel before they started original programming and adding other shows of a dubious (but more "hip") nature. If you like silly fun for the whole family, check out this title or any other family movie that features Kurt Russell, Tommy Kirk, Fred MacMurray, Joe Flynn, Ken Berry, Keenan Wynn & Ed Wynn, Hayley Mills, Jim Dale, Dean Jones, Tim Conway, Don Knotts, Robert Morse, Phil Silvers, or Mickey Rooney. You won't be disappointed!!!
Update - I would like to rate this film higher, I rated it low for the DVD but the website would not let me fix the rating. The movie itself is 4 stars. DVD review 1 star - At the time I review this, the DVD release by Disney left a lot to be desired. So I recommended you save your VHS copy if you were thinking of upgrading until they release a better copy later. Where are the extras, theatrical trailers, behind the scenes, anything?
FILM Review 4 stars - This is the first in a series of 3 movies about a great group of students at the fictional Medfield College, led by the likable Dexter Riley (Kurt Russell). The sequels are "Now You See him, Now You Don't" and my favorite, "The Strongest Man in the World". They were always at odds with the bumbling Dean Higgins (Joe Flynn), who was determined that the kids are up to no good. In this story, the school is in financial trouble, running out of cash. The students and Professor Quigley, (William Schallert), talk a philanthropist businessman (Cesar Romero) into donating a computer to their school, they have no idea he is a criminal boss looking for a place to get rid of it. Then an accident in the lab joins a new computers memory bank into the human mind of student Dexter, making him super intelligent. Soon he is a star, and Dexter's new celebrity status takes him all over the world, even to the United Nations. He is fawned over everywhere he goes, lavished with praise and attention. Of course this makes him start to ignore his friends, but he finally figures out that people are just using him and comes back home to help the school by winning money on a college academic quiz show series where he can win the money to save the school. While they win nearly every game, the bumbling Dean of Medfield really wants to beat his old rival, the Dean of another college. Dexter rolls off every answer with no effort, until a certain question triggers a computer-like response, with Dexter rolling off a series of numbers in an automaton-like trance. Turns out these numbers are from a criminal betting ring that had used the computer at one time. The criminal boss figures out he is at risk and makes Dexter disappear, and his old friend have to try to rescue him. This is a fun family film, with a good storyline full of laughs but not in the slapstick pratfalls that many Walt Disney movies had at the time. It has a lot of heart, with nice pacing and is never boring. Great animated opening title sequence with the catchy title song.
TRIVIA & BEHIND THE SCENES: Directed by Robert Butler. This movie was originally planned for television and so it was filmed in full-screen, but the end product turned out better than they hoped and the studio released it in theatres. It was hugely popular with young people. This movie series helped to make Kurt Russell a big name in Hollywood, this was his 4th Disney theatrical film in addition to his Disney TV work. Kids today would be amazed to see that the computer in the movie practically fills a whole room, but probably lacked the computing power and memory of today's laptops. The original movie poster promoting the film had the tag line, "Programmed for Laughs". Kurt Russell performed for a 45 record of the title song in 1969. By the way, "Medfield College" was also the name of the college in a previous Disney film, "The Absent-Minded professor", it's sequel "Son of Flubber", and the modern Robin Williams version "Flubber". Originally released to theaters in December 31, 1969, it runs 91 minutes long. It aired in two parts on the "Wonderful World of Disney", on September 17, and 24, 1972, and re-aired in 1980. It was broadcast as a 2 hour movie in 1977. First released on video in 1985.
Starring a young Kurt Russell as a college slacker who inadvertently becomes a computer genius, this mid-period Disney effort has plenty of charm although is also pretty formulaic and very much of its time. Still, if seeing a fresh-faced Russell develop his acting chops doesn’t offer enough incentive to give this a go, then perhaps Cesar Romero as a shady businessman getting his comeuppance from a bunch of college misfits will do it – or Joe Flynn as the hopeless college Dean, desperately trying to keep his sudden genius and constantly getting it wrong. The film is also the first in a series of Disney productions set at the Medfield College, and featuring Russell in the lead role; if you like this then you should also check out ‘Now you see me, Now you don’t’, and ‘The Strongest Man in the World’.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 22, 2013
i enjoyed this film because it's fun and innocent. these kids don't do drugs or commit immorality. they're helpful and respectful. sure it's a bit far fetched and corny but if you want to relax and enjoy some innocent silliness then this film is for you.
A true Disney comedy. Turned into a human computer through a lab mishap, Dexter Riley becomes the centre of a winner-take-all tug-of-war. He learns a valuable lesson when the friends he abandoned when he became famous rush to help him when he gets into big trouble. A delightful film to entertain all the family, and perhaps a reminder of how technology has developed since that time.
3.0 out of 5 starsSemplice commedia fantastica. Molto buono il comparto video.
Reviewed in Italy on May 21, 2012
Avrò avuto 6 o 7 anni quando lo visionai al cinema e ne ho tenuto sempre un buon ricordo. Quando ho riscontrato la presenza di un giovanissimo Kurt Russel mi sono detto; perchè non prenderlo? Inoltre è una produzione Walt Disney quindi contavo anche su una certa qualità video.
Ambientato nel classico college americano un gruppo di ragazzi non proprio virtuosi spiano le riunioni del rettore con i professori per carpire quali novità arriveranno nella scuola. Il loro sogno è di disporre di un computer per le lezioni, con un pò di furbizia riescono a farselo recapitare, sarà solo l'inizio di una simpatica commedia fantastica.
Il comparto video di questo DVD è molto buono, meno male che ogni tanto anche il supporto DVD da i suoi frutti nonostante l'età. La colorimetria è la classica pastellata dell'epoca, molto appagante. Ottima la luminosità. Visione a tutto schermo con un formato 1.33:1 Voto: 8
Il comparto audio, addirittura in DD 5.1, chiaramente la resa è quel che è!! Comunque la qualità è discreta, impensabile ottenere grandi performance, resta comunque soddisfacente. Voto: 6,8
Il film ha due sequel sempre con Kurt Russel e altri interpreti di questo film; Spruzza, sparisci e spara e L'uomo più forte del mondo, attualmente non disponibili sul supporto DVD.