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Dick Tracy (1990)

MPAA Rating: PG

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EW's GRADE
B-

Details Rated: PG; Length: 103 Minutes; Genres: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Mystery and Thriller, Sci-fi and Fantasy; With: Warren Beatty, Glenne Headly, Charlie Korsmo, Madonna and Al Pacino...; Distributor: Buena Vista Pictures

More than Batman or Superman, Warren Beatty's bid to ace the summer-movie sweepstakes has been fashioned as a live-action comic strip — a lavishly eye-popping Day-Glo gangster movie. Beatty and his team of collaborators have heightened the vibrantly tawdry urban nightworld of Chester Gould's classic comic strip: It's as if a '30s crime-wave melodrama had been colorized by Andy Warhol. As an exercise in American pop surrealism, the picture succeeds brilliantly, yet it also feels thin and dissociated. Beatty plays the hard-boiled Tracy as a charming, polite nothing, a Clark Kent with no Superman inside him. Overall, Dick Tracy could have used a little less color and a little more flesh and blood.

Originally posted Jun 22, 1994 Published in issue #19 Jun 22, 1990 Order article reprints