Making the Grades
The perfect polyester family from the 1970's are back again with their second film release. As in the first movie, the Bunch is the central point of comedy as their far-out values and styles collide with the 90's.
In this edition, Carol (Shelly Long) is shocked to discover that her husband Roy (Tim Matheson) is still alive when he suddenly shows up at their door. But we soon discover that Roy is not Roy, but a smuggler--and the man who killed the real Roy. Now he's after the famous Brady horse statue that sits in the living room and is reputed to be worth $20 million.
I found this Brady movie funnier than the first, as the writers have the Bunch dealing with the outside world to a greater degree. The sequel features three original Brady songs, the last one performed on the airplane as they head to Hawaii. Saddened about the thought of losing their mom, Greg (Christopher Barnes) suggests they sing. Pulling his guitar out from under the seat, the kids are soon rocking up and down the cabin to a groovy tune -- until the flight attendant asks the people singing in the aisles to kindly take their seats.
But for every funny line you are faced with almost constant sexual innuendo. A disturbing storyline has Greg and Marsha (Christine Taylor), the oldest Brady children, exploring a sexual relationship with each other. After Carol's supposed former husband shows up, they suddenly realize that they are not blood related (didn't they ever watch the opening to the TV show?) and find themselves increasingly attracted to each other. Near the end of the movie, they share a passionate kiss.
The idea of contrasting the stereotyped Brady's with today's culture is one that should bring loads of humor to the screen, but so many of the laughs are based on their "backwards" morals rather than their funky fashions. Parents be warned that the new Bradys seem to be one more Hollywood illustration of happy families looking as outdated as purple shag.