They don't make movies like this anymore though some may say that's a good thing. Although this was amongst the first of Disney's PG rated films, it has more of the feel of the G films their studio turned out in the70s (i.e. "Freaky Friday," "The World's Greatest Athlete") than the PG films that came out in the early 80s (i.e. "Watcher in the Woods," "Tron," "Something Wicked This Way Comes"). Because of Disney's backing, "Midnight Madness" obviously had a large budget. A huge cast and a ton of diverse locations go to show that. But zaniness, a madcap scavenger hunt, and spectacular visual style weren't enough to save the film from being an enormous flop... A failure at the box office, most of us were introduced to the film on HBO in the early 80s, back in the days when the same films would be shown 29 times a week (Oh, wait they still do that!). Essentially HBO did for this film what CBS did for "The Wizard of Oz" they created an enormous cult audience for a sugary-sweet mega-flop.... The biggest problem that makes this a "bad" film is that there's too many characters and very few of them are fleshed out Eddie Deezen's "squad" don't even have names! The blue team, although they're the villains, are the most endearing and have the most work put into their characters (with the exception of the girl, who can't act & doesn't have enough to do). Harold, perfectly played to the hilt by Stephen Furst, is really the only one whose character is fully realized in the film. The other standout character is goof-off Melio, played with tons of charm by now-director Andy Tennant. Although then-Dr. Pepper spokesman David Naughton was supposed to be the star, his character often comes off obnoxious, particularly when pitted against his brother Adam, Michael J. Fox. While everyone has favorite characters, I don't think anyone who loves the movie could disagree that Furst and Fox are the only two characters that you really learn anything about. Despite the film's many flaws and bad actors (most of whom fell off the face of the earth after this movie) it still works because the actors appeared to be having fun -- and fun on the set equals fun on the screen. Come on, what college jock doesn't dream of floating around in a beer vat and what zoftig girl doesn't dream of stealing the show at the local discotech... er... I guess it would be at a rave nowadays... Campy, squeaky-clean fun for anyone who was young in the 70s & 80s, it's only fitting that this has finally gotten the massive video release that it deserves. But where the hell's the widescreen DVD release with the commentary, trailer and the full version of the song that plays in the disco?
Leon planned "the great all-nighter" by picking college students to participate in an all-night long scavenger hunt. The 5 teams are given clues to solve, leading them to the next clue, ...
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September 4, 2019