Good movie! This was Robin Williams first serious movie role and he is a brilliant Popeye. He brings so much humanity and pathos to this character that it is easy to see the great movies in his future. Shelly Duvall was born to play Olive Oyl and she does not squander the role of a lifetime. And in a smaller role, a standout performance is turned in Bill Irwin as Ham, Olive's bumbling, stumbling, clown of an ex-boyfriend. "Popeye" is a great conversion, from the comic strip to cartoon to film. With added depth and atmosphere, it remains an underrated classic appropriate for those willing to be transported by art to a fantasy land far , far away. However, overall, it's a nice, pleasing type of film. It's no award-winner, but it's a lot better than what you might have read from national critics. If you like Popeye's cartoons and comics, you should like this film, too.
Buff sailor-man Popeye arrives in an awkward seaside town called Sweet Haven. There he meets Wimpy, a hamburger-loving man; Olive Oyl, the soon-to-be love of his life; and Bluto, a huge, mean pirate who's out to make Sweet Haven pay for no good reason. Popeye also discovers his long-lost Pappy in the middle of it all, so with a band of his new friends, Popeye heads off to stop Bluto, and he's got the power of spinach, which Popeye detests, to butt Bluto right in the mush. Watch as Popeye mops the floor with punks in a burger joint, stops a greedy tax man, takes down a champion boxer, and even finds abandoned baby Swee' Pea. He's strong to the finish 'cause he eats his spinach!
Robert Altman as the director. Robin Williams in his first feature film role. You'd think that the end result would be somewhat entertaining. Well, 'Popeye' was a real torture and honestly one of the worst films I've ever seen.
Popeye comes to a place called Sweethaven to find his father, meets Olive Oyl and all of a sudden adopts a kid called Sweetpea. And every now and then the cast starts to sing the most terrible songs ever performed on the big screen. I like musicals as much as the next new kid on the block but goddamn! These songs were probably arranged by a bunch of braindamaged monkeys. Fuck me sideways and pull a roll of quarters from my ass!
The cast is a bunch of apathetic nutcases. The acting, all of them together and not to name a few, is one of the worst ever witnessed by my eyes. Their voices, their looks... Awful. I should probably get some therapy for this but I'm pretty sure that I'll cry myself to sleep today. There's absolutely nothing good in this film. No wait, the moment when the screen goes blank. I enjoyed that. Very much.
Now you may ask; "You moron! Why didn't you just push the stop button?" Not my thing, I always watch the movie 'til the end. Even if it would suck more ass the all the asses in the world and beyond. Do not watch this movie!
So this movie happened.
Sitting on my shelf, in the pile consisting mostly of movies other people bought me, me and the boys decided to watch Popeye, a movie I forgot existed. Not only does is it directed by Robert Altman and stars Robin Williams in his debut film role and Shelly Duvall, the film is also a musical. Let the fun begin!
Certainly a lot of effort went into the production design, as a whole town was built to create the sets for this movie. Along with careful choreography and extras use to get across this light-hearted musical theme. All of this going into the film that is treated very much like a cartoon.
Basically, the story involves Popeye coming into town looking for his pappy, only to fall for the skinny Olive Oyl. Unfortunately, Popeye must also deal with the brute known as Bluto and a newly arrived baby on the scene.
Now, I'm not a fan of musicals and it doesn't help when only a couple of the songs actually have comprehensible lyrics, however, that's not a huge problem for this film. The big problem comes from the fact that its almost two hours long. Its a huge stretch to suffer through Williams playing this character and Shelly Duvall and her teeth complaining and screaming for Popeye.
Its well made, I guess, but hell if I wanna watch it again anytime soon.
Popeye: Oh, what am I? Some kind of barnacle on the dinghy of life?
I enjoyed it this time around as well, but for different reasons. I'm a sucker for good set design, creative costumes, actual people & objects being used in special effects / stunts as opposed to the over-use of CGI. Part of this films charm is that it was made this "old fashioned" way, yet it is still very stylized and visually appealing. The sets were so amazing and well built that they are still there in Malta nearly 30 years later and have become a sort of tourist destination!
It does have it's weak points, but all in all it is an enjoyable little romp and the cast does a great job at bringing the cartoon characters to life. And one of the few films where Robin Williams doesn't bug the crap out of me!