In ADDAMS FAMILY VALUES, Barry Sonnenfeld has performed the remarkable feat of making a sequel even more entertaining than its predecessor. The charmingly creepy Addams family (based on characters originally created by the morbid Charles Addams) have two new additions, mustachioed baby Pubert and sunny nanny Debbie Jellinsky. While Debbie (wonderfully played by Joan Cusack) charms the adults of the family, particularly Uncle Fester, the children discover that she is actually a serial killer called the Black Widow. The children are soon shipped off to summer camp as part of nanny dearest's diabolical plot. It's at Camp Chippewa that some of the funniest scenes occur, particularly one in which Wednesday tells genuinely terrifying ghost stories to the other campers and another that features both Addams children being sent the Harmony Hut as punishment for trying to escape. Sonnenfeld and production designer Ken Adams (no relation) make sure that each minute is a pleasure to look at by creating a feast of dark visions and macabre sight gags. ADDAMS FAMILY VALUES will be most enjoyed by those with a taste for flip gallows humor.
Barry Sonnenfeld - American Director of Photography/Director
Carol Kane - American actress, TAXI (TV), WHEN A STRANGER CALLS
Raul Julia - Actor, Gomez Addams
Carel Struycken - Actor/"Addams Family"
Christopher Lloyd - Actor, TAXI
Chris Ellis - Star, Film and TV movies, began in early '80s
Christina Ricci - American Actress
Jimmy Workman - Child Actor/Addams Family
Arthur Schmidt - Editor, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEA
Joan Cusack - American actress, WORKING GIRL (1988)
Anjelica Huston - American actress, THE GRIFTERS/THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS
Morticia and Gomez Addams (Anjelica Huston and Raul Julia) couldn't be more pleased with the newest additions to the family, mustachioed baby Pubert and perky nanny Debbie (Joan Cusack). Less pleased are siblings (and rivals) Wednesday (Christina Ricci) and Pugsley (Jimmy Workman), who want to rid themselves of the infant usurper while investigating the truth behind Debbie's exterior. Before the children can prove that Debbie is a homicidal maniac called the Black Widow--out to add Uncle Fester (Christopher Lloyd) to her collection of corpses--they are banished to summer camp. Can the Addams family survive the murderess and Kumbaya?
Theatrical release: November 19, 1993. Filmed in Los Angeles, Pasadena, and Palos Verdes, California. Sequel to the 1991 hit movie THE ADDAMS FAMILY, featuring the same stars and also directed by Sonnenfeld. Production designer Ken Adam's likeness can be spotted sculpted on the tombstone for Smiley. Twins Kaitlyn and Kristin Hooper took turns playing Pubert Addams. Maureen Sue and Darlene Levin played Flora and Fauna Amor. Barry Sonnenfeld makes a cameo appearance as Mr. Glicker, the father of another camper. David Hyde Pierce also appears in a cameo role as the delivery-room doctor. Continuity errors: Keep an eye on Debbie's scarf during the car chase and on Becky's hands when she's arguing with Wednesday about hugging.
"...Glee on the screen....Buoyant in absurd, wonderful ways..." - 11/19/1993 New York Times, p.C3
"...Inspired dementia..." - Recommended - 06/01/1994 Premiere, p.120
"...Wholly wonderful performances by Joan Cusack...and Christina Ricci, whose blank-faced strangeness is used to even better effect than in the first film..." - 02/01/1994 Sight and Sound, p.44-5
"...[Julia is] picture-perfect..." - 11/04/1994 Entertainment Weekly, p.81