When long-lost Uncle Fester (Christopher Lloyd) reappears after 25 years in the Bermuda Triangle, Morticia (Anjelica Huston) and Gomez (Raul Julia) ecstatically begin plans for a celebration that will wake the dead. Meanwhile, an evil lawyer is plotting ways to get at the ghoulish family's fortunes--which are stashed somewhere within a secret vault inside the family mansion. Only the Addams's daughter, Wednesday, played by the brilliant and stunningly stoic Christina Ricci, and the Addams's detached hand servant, Thing, suspect that something rotten is afoot. But can they prove anything before the vault is found and the Addams family is plunged into poverty? THE ADDAMS FAMILY is not only the cartoon and television family's film premiere but is also the directorial debut of talented cinematographer Barry Sonnenfeld. It has a winningly dark sense of humor that manages to be both lighthearted and macabre.
Anjelica Huston - American actress, THE GRIFTERS/THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS
Christopher Lloyd - Actor, TAXI
Jimmy Workman - Child Actor/Addams Family
Barry Sonnenfeld - American Director of Photography/Director
Christina Ricci - American Actress
Dan Hedaya - American TV/Film Actor
Caroline Thompson - American Screenwriter
Caroline W. Thompson - American Screenwriter
Raul Julia - Actor, Gomez Addams
Elizabeth Wilson - American actress
Judith Malina - Actress
Carel Struycken - Actor/"Addams Family"
The kooky and spooky Addams family, stars of cartoons and TV, are here in their feature-film premiere. A swindling lawyer attempts to get his hands on the family fortunes by planting an impostor in their midst. As the fiend (Christopher Lloyd) who claims to be their long-lost Uncle Fester attempts to find the location of the hidden vault, Morticia (Anjelica Huston) and Gomez (Raul Julia) plan a fete that will wake the dead, and only Thing and Wednesday (played by the appealingly morose Christina Ricci) begin to suspect that Uncle Fester is acting a little too "normal" to be the real Fester.
Certain members of the cast had to withstand two hours' worth of makeup in order to become the assortment of bizarre characters. The film was the directorial debut for Barry Sonnenfeld, who had previously been an Emmy Award-winning director of photography. Cartoonist Charles Addams created more than 1,300 Addams Family scenes. In addition to his serialization in The New Yorker magazine, Addams's work has been shown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Fogg Art Museum, and the Museum of the City of New York. The television series based on Charles Addams's work ran from 1964 to 1966 on the ABC network. (THE MUNSTERS also debuted in 1964.) An animated version appeared on NBC's Saturday-morning lineup from 1973 to 1975. Thing prosthetics and puppets were designed and monitored by David Miller of the David Miller Studio. Paul Rudnick did some uncredited rewriting on this film. The film grossed more than $115 million at the box office.
"...The film works as a celebration of unconventional togetherness..." - 01/01/1992 Sight and Sound, p.36-7
"...A lavish, funny revival....Ingenious casting, droll production design, spirited direction and dazzling camera tricks..." - 11/22/1991 New York Times, p.C1
"...Sonnenfeld does provide the necessary visual panache..." - 11/22/1991 Los Angeles Times, p.F1