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Overall Rating

Awesome: 11.29%
Worth A Look40.32%
Average: 3.23%
Pretty Bad: 33.87%
Total Crap: 11.29%

5 reviews, 32 user ratings

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Osmosis Jones
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by Scott Weinberg

"Don't judge this one by its Box-Office performance. It's a fun little movie"
4 stars

Produced for $75 million bucks and earner of less than $14 million, Osmosis Jones easily ranks among one of the year's biggest financial bombs. Critics seem unmoved by the combination of live-action comedy and animated action while moviegoers were uninterested in the colorful cast and fart jokes. But guess what? It's a pretty fun little movie.

Osmosis Jones borrows from a handful of other movies. The main plot deals with the "body explorations" similar to those in Fantastic Voyage and Innerspace, while the live action/animation angle has been done before in movies fantastic (Who Framed Roger Rabbit?) and insipid (Cool World). But despite its lack of originality, Osmosis Jones proves to be a bright, fast-paced and rather clever little gross-out comedy.

Frank (Bill Murray) is a disgusting slob. When he's not eating popping zits or scratching his butt, Frank fills his body with the most staggering array of junk food imaginable. Much to the chagrin of his cutey-pie little daughter (Elena Franklin), Frank seems bound to eat himself into an early grave. Things take a turn for the worse after Frank eats a hard-boiled egg he has wrestled away from a manic monkey. (Frank works at the zoo!)

As soon as the contaminated egg enters Frank's body, the animation scenes kick in. Osmosis Jones (Chris Rock) is a white blood cell working 'mouth detail', when the alien germs begin to invade. After a series of screwups, Jones is saddled with a new partner, a recently-digested cold pill named Drixoral (David Hyde Pierce). Drix and Osmosis quickly uncover evidence that proves the existence of a life-threatening virus, and they quickly set off to save Frank.

The best portions of Osmosis Jones come early on, as the screenplay (by Marc Hyman) offers numerous clever gags from inside Frank's body. The hot night club is inside one of Frank's pimples, the gangster cells hang out in Frank's armpits, and if you need a lawyer you need to head for the hemorrhoids. (Heehee!) As the internal adventure continues, Drix and Osmosis spark up an amiable 'buddy-cop' chemistry and a few exciting action scenes keep things moving along nicely. (The movie clocks in under 90 minutes.)

The live-action scenes are not as successful. Although Bill Murray is surely one of Hollywood's finest comic actors, he's not required to do much in this one, aside from sneezing, farting, coughing and basically just looking gross. Equally as unimpressive is the always-unkempt Chris Elliot (Cabin Boy) as Frank's drinking buddy. Molly Shannon (Superstar) manages a few funny scenes as a fidgety school teacher.

On the voice-over side, the cast is equally as strange. Chris Rock (CB4) plays Osmosis Jones as a smack-talkin' street cop, but he's not really all that funny. (Rock is always at his best when he's unbridled.) As the dour yet powerful Drix, David Hyde Pierce (TV's Frasier) is very amusing, and William Shatner does a solid turn as the scheming mayor of Frank. Curiously enough, Ron Howard (American Graffiti) offers a funny cameo bit as an opposing mayoral candidate.

While the Farrely Brothers (There's Something About Mary, Dumb & Dumber) are credited as the directors, they only handled the live-action bits. The animation sequences (which comprise probably 75% of the movie) were directed by Piet Kroon (The Iron Giant) and Tom Sito (The Prince of Egypt). How the Farrelly Brothers earned sole directing credit is beyond me, because not only are the live-action scenes few and far between, but the animation segments are infinitely more entertaining.

While it's certainly not among the best movies of the year, Osmosis Jones is not a film that deserved to end up $60 million dollars in the hole. I suppose the end product proved to be a tough sell for Warner Brothers, but I suspect this one will achieve a loyal cult following over the years: it's colorful and clever, it's pretty gross, and it was a huge box-office bomb.

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originally posted: 11/20/01 15:33:57
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User Comments

11/10/10 clh2+mtm great...i love it...have to watch it for nursing in school 5 stars
7/21/08 Samantha Pruitt really creative, and pretty funny! Chris Rock was funny 4 stars
2/18/08 Pamela White gross out for kids 2 stars
9/02/05 ES Had its moments, though it should have been funnier, wait for it to be on TV 3 stars
6/20/05 Quigley whoever liked this movie is a brainwashed idiot. this film is GROSS as heck. not for kids!! 1 stars
12/07/04 Jason Kaul Wow it's bad. If it wasn't for a great song by De La Soul, this film would be a total wash. 2 stars
7/21/04 April Gupton boring 2 stars
1/08/04 Amber Peterson Awesome! 5 stars
12/15/03 Jon Lyrik An unfortunate bomb, a pretty clever piece. 4 stars
11/29/03 Samuel pretty funny! 3 stars
8/31/03 Kitty Kelso disgusting, but Murray did a great job!!! 5 stars
3/24/03 Jack Sommersby Underrated and wonderfully creative. 4 stars
12/06/02 Kelly Intelligent and fun - not for the cynical uppity art bastard 4 stars
11/10/02 Elizaveta Interesting concept...too bad it was executed with no imagination. None. 2 stars
9/02/02 movie guy GREAT 5 stars
6/19/02 Danielle Ophelia Why this was the one overlooked in such a truly abysmal summer, I'll never know. 4 stars
6/18/02 Roy Smith Not great, does Bill Murray even try anymore? 2 stars
3/31/02 Jeremy cool 5 stars
3/03/02 Jenny Tullwartz Farrellys' alimentary canal humor works better from the outside. 2 stars
1/28/02 Soaplando Really cool movie - I expected someting a bit nastier 4 stars
1/24/02 Shane Robert Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This movie is original & Laurence Fishburne is the best animated villian!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4 stars
1/07/02 The Bomb 69 completely original, funny but should have been funnier 4 stars
12/12/01 Jimmy James meh, unfunny most of the time 2 stars
12/04/01 Andrew Carden Ben Stein Was Funny, but Otherwise The Movie Was Dumb and Mindless. 2 stars
9/01/01 Butterbean Of course it's disgusting! It's a movie about a human body! The jokes were lame tho 4 stars
8/31/01 spaceworm ONe for Health Class. Dads, tak the kids... 4 stars
8/24/01 Mr. Hat I'm probably the biggest Farrelly Bros. fan ever. Obviously, I really liked this movie. 4 stars
8/23/01 J I never been a Farelly fan but "frank"ly I think this is their best movie. 5 stars
8/19/01 Boomshanka "Let's make a cartoon about hygiene! Starring Bill Murray! That's what the world needs!" 2 stars
8/14/01 MJA Much wittier than I expected, sometimes downright clever. 4 stars
8/13/01 G. Storm Worth it to animation fans, but live-action is tired. 4 stars
8/12/01 Sweetie I loved it! Funny, and I luv David Hyde Pierce. 5 stars
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  10-Aug-2001 (PG)



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