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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Gumby: The Movie (1995)

(aka: Gumby 1)



Reviews and Comments

Paradoxically, the advances in technology that permit cleaner, smoother, more realistic and impressive animation have not diminished in any way the endearing quality of crude but creative animation such as that used to bring Gumby and Pokey to life. This feature film retains the look and feel of the kids' claymated television show. It's delightful the games that can be played when animation need not be shackled by the constraints of reality. In an amusing early scene, Pokey gets hit by two other clay characters a little too hard, and the three turn into a big mixed up multicolored ball of clay. It takes special surgery to separate them apart. And that's the endearing quality of Gumby; he and his world isn't an animated representation of something in real life -- they are the animation. They really are made out of clay.

That said, my interest in the movie pretty much ended there. I feel sentimental about the show (and now the film), but I was never a great fan of it. For me, Gumby is neat to have around but not something I ever wanted to focus my attention to for any length of time.

It's highly unlikely that adults will find much to enjoy in this, unless they're bigger fans of Gumby than I am. The story is focused directly at kids, and the pacing crawls -- particularly after the hour mark, where the action is drawn out another half hour when a natural ending would have taken five minutes. But I can imagine kids of the right age being fascinated.