Welcome back to 1 out of 5 – Would Recommend, where sometimes something seems like a great idea and then turns out not to be! In celebration of Jurassic World’s imminent release, we’re talking about 1995’s genetically engineered dinosaur movie, Theodore Rex!
What’s The Plot?
Tough as nails cyborg cop Katie Coltrane (Whoopi Goldberg) is partnered with genetically engineered dinosaur Teddy Rex (voiced by Justice League Unlimited’s George Newbern) to solve two seemingly unconnected murders. Can they do so within 24 hours? Why is there a time limit? The movies doesn’t care, why should you?
Who Made This Beautiful Garbage?
A real film studio! New Line Cinema produced this thing, originally for theatrical release. The movie definitely had an appreciable budget, which makes its relegation to direct-to-video all the more puzzling. Until you watch it.
Five Reasons to See It
- Drusilla on Buffy The Vampire Slayer. One wonders what her reaction would be if you asked her to sign a copy of this flick. One of the villain’s lead henchpeople is played by Juliet Landau, who was in between her supporting role in Ed Wood and playing
- The genetically engineered dinosaurs – who are still shaped like dinos despite being roughly human sized and having human intellects – are viewed as outcasts and freaks. Which makes one wonder what the point of cloning a whole community of them was.
- The dinosaurs are “recovering carnivores”, having replaced red meat with cookies and milk as a staple food. Which isn’t how obligate carnivores work, really.
- Da Chief, the clichéd African American hardass boss who gives our lead detectives a hard time, is played by Richard Roundtree of Shaft fame. Two years later, he would play Shaq’s uncle in the destined-for-inclusion-here super hero flick Steel. The 90’s weren’t kind to Mr. Roundtree.
- “I didn’t butt trumpet, one of these things is leaking!”
In good conscience, there isn’t one. This is a truly puzzling movie – it is clearly meant to be a family film but portrays a fairly dystopian cyberpunk future (I repeat myself). The movie spoils the villain’s plan in the first ten seconds, making the hour it takes the heroes to solve the mystery an experience in tedium. It is an entirely aimless and bizarre film, but if you get some funny friends together, it may be salvageable.
NEXT WEEK: Hollywood gets crazy in an oh-so-right way with 2013’s Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters.