Introducing: Clifford (1994)

Clifford 1994 It’s a new year, the holiday season is passed us, and my winter vacation has withered away to nothing. It’s a good time to return to the real world refreshed and ready to go. I thought I’d start the new year with something humorous and funny and get the new year started right. Instead, I was stunned beyond believe at what I chose. The movie I painfully watched was 1994’s Clifford. If you are a glutton for punishment then load this flick up in your Netflix queue and use the notes I’ve provided so you can watch it on fast forward and you won’t have to endure the full 90 minutes of torture that others before you have had.

Streaming on: Netflix

Directed by: Paul Flaherty

Starring: Martin Short,Charles Grodin, Mary Steenburgen, Dabney Coleman

Tagline: A comedy with a lots of laughs, and a 10-year-old terror! – I call bullshit on this one.

Rated: PG

Total Number of Funny Moments in the Film: 1 (Bonus if you can actually find it)

Ten year old Clifford is sent on a quick trip to his Uncle Martin’s house to give some relief to his overwhelmed and drunk parents and to show Martin’s girlfriend that he can care for a young child and be a family man. The problem is that Clifford is obsessed with dinosaurs and wants to visit the local theme park, Dinosaur Land. And when a promised visit to the park, gets side tracked because of a business deadline at Martin’s job, young Clifford decides to make his Uncle’s life a living hell for not following through on his promise.

What You Would be Missing:

  • Nice title sequence art
  • Boy Meets World meets Martin Short’s head
  • Surely I’m not the only one who is disturbed at Martin Short acting like a little kid.
  • Holy massive flowery moo-moo Batman, was that just a Rosie O’Donnell sighting.
  • Did Charles Grodin not get enough of being dragged all over the place by a dog during Beethoven?
  • What’s scarier Martin Short being a 10-year-old or Mary Steenburgen in the shower…definite toss up.
  • The person in that dinosaur costume sure shrunk a lot on the way to the bathroom.
  • Uncle Martin must be drunk already if he can’t smell the difference between a Bloody Mary and a class of Tabasco Sauce
  • Well now,  that’s not fair, the people at the dinner table got to laugh more during this movie than I have so far.
  • More non-funny Martin Short faces please. Oh, and a stupid Ed Grimley dance to boot.
  • Grodin’s eagle-eyes from a speeding taxi cab can spot a cheating Steenburgen anywhere
  • Man in drag cameo for no apparent reason
  • Must we see another Clifford/Ed Grimley dance? It wasn’t funny the first time.
  • Continuity alert: Clifford’s hands get untied twice
  • This kid has got some mental issues, he doesn’t have Dennis the Menace’s mischievous innocence, he is completely psychotic and evil.
  • Welcome to Jurassic Park!!
  • As if going through a crappy dinosaur themed roller coaster ride once was bad enough. Try two and a half times.
  • Short was much more entertaining as an old priest than a ten year old.
  • And that ladies and gentlemen is the point in his life that Clifford knew he was gay.

Award Winning Dialogue:

“I spent the better part of a whole day in your company.”

“Normally I’d despise when someone ruffles my hair Uncle Martin, but not when you do it.” Awkward silence.

“I NEED CHOCOLATE – Get me the Bunny!”

“If you do one thing that I find weird…look like a human boy for once.”

“No thanks, I’m not interested in babysitters that aren’t associated with the Manson family.”

“Uncle Martin, someone tried to touch me in my “no-no special place…”

The Final Word:

First of all, who in their right mind would think that this would remotely work as a movie? Was this supposed to be a movie designed to highlight Martin Short’s quirky comedic behavior and make him a huge star? If so…EPIC FAIL!!! Martin Short doesn’t even attempt to make himself act like a real 10-year-old child would act or speak or react. He was like a four year old with a fifty year old vocabulary and delivery. There is nothing likable about his character at all. In fact, did anyone even hang out with a 10-year-old prior to the movie to research for the role? Short could have at least hung out with the Boy Meets World kid for a day or two to see how a 10-year-old really acts. The acting throughout the film isn’t great despite a pretty good cast. Mary Steenbergen and Dadney Coleman do somewhat of a half-assed job in their secondary roles, while I think Charles Grodin may have done the best job throughout the film. He was a bit more funny that Short was but still have some bad “overacting” bits.

This movie was bad from the very beginning, I was highly disappointed at exactly how unfunny this movie was. Now, I wasn’t expecting to be crying from laughter, but I was at least expecting something entertaining. You want to know the one point in the movie that mad me chuckle and I thought was funny, it was within the first five minutes of the film when the kid falls out of the window onto Priest Short’s head. That was it! Probably my warped sense of humor, however not as warped as the writers of this film. I am giving this movie a generous 4.5 turds out of 5 and a candidate for one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen in my life.

Martin Short and Charles Grodin

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3 thoughts on “Introducing: Clifford (1994)

  1. Hey! Thanks for stopping by and following my little blog! I have returned the favour! Cheers mate!! 😀

  2. mistylayne says:

    Sounds atrocious. I am sad I have this knowledge now. 😉

  3. Thank you for reminding me of this. As a child, I loved it and I named a small plastic dinosaur Stephan.

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