Late To The Party: Clue

The first time I saw the “Rocky Horror Picture Show” it was Halloween of 97 (or was it 98?).  From that point on I’ve always been told I needed to see 2 other movies.  Shock Treatment, the sequel, prequel, that’s an equal to Rocky Horror, was the first film.  The second film was Clue.  So finally, nearly 15 years later after initially being told, I decided to join the party and give it a shot, and I’m glad I did.

The movie is loosely based on the Parker Brothers board game by the same name.  Clue is about 6 guests invited to a mansion to a mystery dinner by someone blackmailing them, who you later find out is called Mr. Body.    Once the guests arrive they are told they weren’t invited by Mr. Body after all.  They instead were invited by The Butler to help put Mr. Body behind bars.  The lights go out and Mr. Body winds up dead, but nobody knows who killed him.  The dinner turns into a great murder mystery.

Tim Curry as The Butler was excellent in the film.  I think I might have enjoyed him here more than any other film I’ve seen him in.  The way he ran around near the end explaining the mystery reminded me of Sherlock.   By looking at him I couldn’t tell that this movie was made 10 years after Rocky Horror.  He looked like he hadn’t really aged.

Because Tim Curry looked so young, for the first 20-30 minutes of the film I thought Mrs. Scarlet was played by Susan Sarandon instead of Lesley Ann Warren.  They looked really similar up until they did a closeup on Mrs. Scarlet, and even then I just chalked it up to her being older so she looked different.  When I finally realized Mrs. Scarlet wasn’t Susan Sarandon I was baffled and immediately had to check imdb.

I also didn’t recognize Madeline Kahn as Mrs. White.  I thought she was an interesting character but was underutilized.   Instead I often forgot she was there until she popped up.

The rest of the cast did a pretty good job.  It was cool seeing Christopher Lloyd playing Professor Plum.  He looked relatively young in this film which is weird considering Back to the Future came out the same year where he looked much older mostly due to his white hair.

The only other real criticism I have for the movie is that it seemed a tiny bit over sexualized for a movie rated PG.  I was watching the film with a 9-year-old and there were several things that I hoped she hadn’t noticed or caught.  I think  movies from the 80’s like Ghostbusters just got away with being a bit more risky when it comes to this kind of stuff.   Then again I saw Ghostbusters when I was 8, and the whole keymaster, gatekeeper thing went over my head, along with a lot of other sexual innuendo’s.

The movie had multiple endings that were all pretty decent.  I’m not sure which one I liked the most.  I won’t spoil them for you, in case you’re late to the party as well.  Clue is probably the best board game movie tie in that we will ever see.  John Landis and director Jonathan Lynn put together a pretty good script in order to make this movie work.  This makes me wish he would have written Battleship.

Clue is available now on DVD, and Blu-ray, and you can watch it streaming like I did on Netflix, or Amazon Prime.

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