Perhaps the most famous movie review of all time is a negative one put out by Roger Ebert. The last paragraph begins with the phrase: “I hated this movie. Hated, hated, hated, hated this movie.” Well, that got me curious about the film and I decided if he hated it that much it was seriously something I had to see. The movie I’m talking about is the 1994 film North.
A young boy feels his parents don’t love him or pay any attention to him, so he becomes a “free agent” and goes around the world searching for parents. He tries out quite a few different ones before, after an eight week search, returns to his original family.
Not gonna lie, this is a pretty cheesy film. The first time I watched it I thought it really was as bad as Ebert said. Then I watched it again and found myself rather entertained by its mediocre style and humor. The story is stupid, the acting is horrible, and for some reason I liked it. I have two words for you: Cult Classic. There are a lot of films out there that just suck, but they’ve gathered suck a strong fan base it’s hard to ignore them. Example: Howard the Duck or The Big Lebowski.
There are some really corny scenes, such as when Dan Ackroyd and Reba McIntyre burst into song singing about the future they have in mind for North. In other weird scene, the Alaskan family he visits starts whistling The Andy Griffith Show theme. Bruce Willis constantly pops up in the most random spots and sort of helps explain the ending. I must say I rather liked the ending despite what millions of people said. Then again, I rather liked the film despite what millions of people said.
The whole plot to stop North from returning home was kind of stupid. I tried to wrap my head around why kids would want to rule the world, but gave up on that about halfway through the movie. It was bizarre and could’ve been dropped, but still interesting. I mean, why would kids REALLY try to kill a child just so they could rule the world? Personally I wouldn’t want all that stress on me. I mean, have you seen the world lately?
The film was hard to find. It’s split up into eight parts on YouTube which is where I finally found it. The movie was released on DVD in several countries except the US. God bless the internet. I really hope they release it on DVD so I can add it to my collection of horrible films. Sometimes you just have to watch a sucky film to feel better about your life. I know there are days when Howard the Duck and Plan 9 From Outer Space make me feel like I can conquer the world.
No doubt this was not Rob Reiner’s finest, nor was it anyone else’s who starred in the film. There were some moments where I just stared in disbelief and chuckled at how brave they were to use such a stupid line. There were other moments where I just waited for the next scene to show up. Example: The Alaskans send the elderly out to float on an iceberg to “die with dignity”. Yeah, really weird.
I say go check it out for yourself. It sucks, no one will dare deny it, but it’s entertaining enough to make you smile. It was nice to see everything come into focus for North and see the realization that comes on his face when he learns just how much his family means to him.