this is a classic story of poor vs rich and the adage that crime does not pay. The performances of the kids in the gang are absolutely stellar and carry this movie strongly. It was an enjoyable movie to watch and definitely worth seeing. While Bogart's character is in and out of the whole movie, it is definitely a lesser role and more of a backdrop upon which the rest of the story is told.
This is a great movie that provides a lot of insight into the Jewish family in the United States, or at least I assume that it provides a lot of insight. Despite the title, the movie is not so much about religion as it is about community, family and tradition. The movie also helps the viewer to realize that we all have a role to play in society and within our circles of influence.
Very torn on this movie as I was a fan of Smurfs when I was a kid in the 80's so I did look forward to their debut and modernization. I am also a fan of Neil Patrick Harris so what could go wrong with this one? Well, to begine with the script was terrible. The writers either lacked creativity or simply did not care about their subject so they pulled every cliche out of the hat and threw it on the screen expecting it to work. the Smurfs get sent to New York City through a magic portal, what a unique idea that's never been done before and everyone knows that telling a story about the Smurfs in their own land where there were 8 seasons of cartoons would not be very interesting (yes, that was sarcasm). The magical creatures in New York go to a mall, oh there's another new idea that's only been done in every movie about people/creatures from other places coming to a modern city. Now I understand that cliches when done well are wonderful, but cliches when done because the writer's refused to even try to come up with something better are just a rip-off. My other complaint with the movie is the compositing, merging of the CG animation with the live action. It was terrrible. Probably needed a few more months to get the lighting and positioning correct. There were too many gaps between Smurfs and the hands or bodies that they were interacting with and too often the lighting on the smurf was slightly off from the lighting on the human. All in all this movie could have been great if they spent another 6-10 months in development and actually wrote a script instead of borrowing from other similar movies.
This movie is a fun spoof of the 30s-50s private detective movies. The characters are all well played and cast with a strong chemistry between Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour helping to push the movie along. If you are a fan of the classic detective movies, then you will enjoy this light hearted romp through the same story lines with the same characters and the same one-liners.