It’s a shame adults will have to wait until the end credits to get the laughs they’ll enjoy most in this picture. Until then, accompanying a child could come under the heading of duty, with grown-ups having to get their entertainment from the many film and TV allusions in script/sight gags. It's such a good cast for so little result: Matthew Broderick, Rupert Everett and Joely Fisher are fine as John Brown, Scolex, and Brenda Bradford, and young Michelle Trachtenberg is good as Brown’s niece Penny.The problem appears to be the plot (story Dana Olsen and Kerry Ehrin, screenplay Ehrin and Zak Penn), which seems to put all events on an equal level. Kids may accept various happenings strung together like popcorn, but their wrinkly escorts – some old enough to remember the original Inspector Gadget cartoon – are likely to expect more in the way of structure and character development.
The story starts by showing how security guard John Brown became the bionic Inspector Gadget, after an accident which also injured evil millionaire Scolex. At the behest of Brenda Bradford (after her inventor father’s death due to Scolex) Brown is remade with all sorts of helpful doodads to fight crime, while Scolex acquires a metal pincer invented by his minion Kramer (Andy Dick), leading to his nickname “Claw”. The rest of the story introduces an evil copy of Inspector Gadget named RoboGadget, and a bad version of Brenda Bradford, and the bad robots cause havoc etc., etc.As the end credits roll, the film’s most amusing idea comes with a shot of Claw’s former minion, Sikes (Michael G. Hagerty), attending a meeting of a Minion Recovery Group, along with Oddjob, Kato, Tonto, and others you’ll have to be quick to recognise. Watch also for the final few seconds, when the Caravan Pictures man walking off into the distance sprouts rotors like Inspector Gadget to lift him up and away. (Shane Lewis--filmnet.org.au)