The lights came up after a showing of Treasure of the Lost Lamp.
”Well now,” said an adult heartily, hoping to get others to do his work for him. ”What’d you think?”
”No, what’d you think?” said the 8-year-old, wise to this sort of interrogation. ”I thought it was, um, pretty dull.”
”Dull?” said the 8-year-old,shocked.
”Dull?” said her identically aged friend, identically shocked.
”Dull?” said the friend’s father, suspicious. ”Wait a minute. You didn’t see the Jetsons movie, did you? Now that was dull. This was good. By comparison.”
”Dad,” said the usually mum 5-year-old, ”it was boss.”
Well, maybe. This adult is a fan of TV’s DuckTales; it’s a well-done modernization of the Walt Disney characters Uncle Scrooge and his nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie. Treasure of the Lost Lamp is an attempt to cross the DuckTales series with Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones movies. And while that’s a clever idea — a shrewd way to open up the TV show for the big screen — it’s only fitfully successful.
The screenplay, by Alan Burnett, concerns a search for the treasure of the legendary thief Collie Baba. Scrooge, his nephews, and their female friend Webby travel around the world in Indiana Jones-style safari outfits, deftly avoiding the dangers of trapdoors, snakes, and a villain named Merlock. Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future) supplies Merlock’s voice, and he makes a terrific meanie.
Once you get the concept of Treasure of the Lost Lamp, though, there’s little more to follow; the film is just a series of well-animated chase scenes. But as was noted at the start of this review, I’m in the minority. The grade below, therefore, reflects an averaged consensus. B