Februrary 5, 2013
Brady Bunch Movie
Gary Cole, Shelley Long, Christopher Barnes, and Christine Taylor
"Jan, a real
friend likes you for who you are, not what's on your face. If you judge
your friends for passing judgment on you, you're not only judging
yourself you're judging your friends for judging you. And that would be
using bad judgment. "
Okay, now we're talking. Now this is one
movie. In fact, out of all the movies I have written about so
on the countdown, I am quite certain that THIS is the entry that will
generate the most feedback. I have no doubt whatsoever that
there are a ton of closet Brady Bunch Movie fans just lurking around in
weeds out there, just waiting for any sort of an excuse to
talk about it. Because this is the type of movie where
when people love it, they REALLY REALLY love
And people who don't love it, well generally they
seen it, or else they just thought it looked stupid and they never gave
it a chance.
But I have absolute one hundred percent confidence in this entry.
There may be no movie on earth with a
better "how much I enjoyed it" versus "how much I expected it enjoy it"
ratio than The Brady Bunch Movie.
For starters, take everything you know about TV shows that were made
into movies, and throw that right out the window. Seriously,
forget all TV show into movie remake/reboot crap whatsoever.
Because this one is nothing like any of them. This
shouldn't even be mentioned in the same breath as 99% of them.
The Brady Bunch movie is more than just a stupid remake of a TV show.
No, if anything, this movie is more like Airplane!
more of a spoof. And like Airplane, it happens to be a very
clever spoof. In fact this is easily one of the
more ingenious comedies I have seen in the past twenty five years.
It is the type of screenplay that I was absolutely jealous of
first time I saw it on a movie screen. I was jealous of it
because it was such a simple idea, and it was such a brilliant idea,
and anyone could have done it if they had thought of it. Yet
someone else thought of it before I thought of it, and as much as I
loved the movie at the same time it also sort of pissed me off.
Damnit, anyone could have written an ironic
this. But prior to The Brady Bunch Movie, nobody ever had.
This type of a movie was just sitting out there, just waiting
to be made.
In many ways, The Brady Bunch Movie was a trailblazer as much as
something like Pulp
Fiction was a trailblazer. It ushered in a whole new era of
sarcastic ironic parody tributes.
Okay, for those of you who have never seen it before (and I
honestly feel bad for you if that is the case, this movie is an
absolute gem the first time you see it), The Brady Bunch Movie is the
story of... duh... well it is the story of The Brady Bunch.
know, Mike, Carol, Alice, Bobby, Peter, Cindy, Marcia, Jan, Greg, and
maybe sometimes a dog. You know who they are. That
show has been
on TV since long before I was even born. And I am nearly 40
old. I can't imagine there is a man, woman, or child
age of ten in America who has not at least heard of The Brady Bunch.
It might not be the most beloved TV show of all time, but it sure has
been one of the more resilient ones.
Potato sack race!
Well the Brady Bunch Movie is the story of the Bradys.
Only if they were somehow transported from 1970 all the way
1995. So the Brady Family is basically smack dab in the
middle of Los
Angeles in the mid 90's. Only instead of being
astroturf and bell bottoms and The Monkees and the Dittmeyers, now they
are surrounded by grunge and carjackings and rap
music and cynicism.
Okay, so the Dittmeyers are still there too.
You never see the Brady neighbors on the TV show, but we
finally get to see them in the
movie. That was a nice touch.
But here is the catch.
The Bradys may have moved to the 90's, but they don't seem to
KNOW that they have moved to the 90's.
They are still the exact same groovy 70's family that they
on the TV show. So they are still walking around in the exact
same bell bottoms, and the exact same 70's clothes, and Greg still
drives to school in a station wagon with a CB radio and an 8 track, and
they don't seem to realize that everybody else in the neighborhood
thinks that they are psychopath freaks from hell. So the
entire movie is the
weird 70's Brady family just blissfully wandering along in the middle
of 1990's Los Angeles, and everybody else trying to figure out what the
hell to make out of them.
Greg being shot down yet again in the 90's dating scene
There are SO many great scenes in this movie. So many great
lines, so many great character interactions, so many funny little
moments. I could sit here and think about it for half an
and I am not sure I could even narrow it down to my top ten.
mean, there is one scene in the movie where (just like in the TV show)
Peter throws a football in the yard at Marcia and it breaks her nose.
So she is all bummed out that her date that night will take
look at her nose and will want to cancel the date.
That is the exact storyline from one of the Brady Bunch TV episodes, by
the way. Marcia breaks her nose and she is worried what her
will think. It is arguably one of the more famous Brady Bunch
episodes of all time.
Well, in the movie, the whole football/nose situation is treated a
little bit differently. Why? Well because that's
movie does. That is why it is so brilliant. It
very familiar Brady Bunch storyline, and it sort of warps it a little
In the movie, Marcia's date shows up at the house, and he takes one
look at her swollen nose. And she stands there all ashamed
embarrassed. And then the little horndog cheers her up by
informing her, "That's okay, it's not your nose that I'm after."
And then Marcia smiles, and the happy little Brady Bunch
up, and Mike and Carol smile at each other over what a nice young man
their daughter has chosen to go out with.
And then the nice young man takes Marcia out to Lover's Lane so he can
attempt to plow her like a potato field.
Yes, that is the type of comedy you will see in The Brady Bunch Movie.
Marcia Brady. Who the kids at school all know
"is harder to get into than a Pearl Jam concert."
The Brady Bunch Movie came out in 1995 and I remember when I first
saw the posters for it, I was not all that impressed. I
remember thinking, meh. I've already seen The Brady Bunch.
Everybody my age has already seen The Brady Bunch.
Why would I ever want
to see a movie version of it? What would be the point of that?
held out on seeing this movie in the theater for a couple of weeks.
In fact I actually had no interest in seeing it at all
in the theater whatsoever. It is the type of movie that, in
most cases, I never would have given the
time of day.
Unless, well, unless for some odd reason it started
getting really good word of mouth.
As a wise man once said, "Wherever you go, there you are."
Oh, and good word of mouth it quickly started getting.
The Brady Bunch Movie hadn't been out for more than a couple of days,
and on the internet message boards (yes there was an internet
1995, although it sure didn't look like it does now) people were
already starting to buzz about it. Everywhere I looked, on
movie website or message board, people were talking about how much
funnier this movie was than they expected it to be. And these
weren't all baby boomers who were saying that either, nor were
they children of the early 70's who had grown up with the TV
No, most of the people who were raving about this movie in
were people my age, they were college students. And for a
like THIS to get a hold of a cynical young audience like THAT, well
really doesn't happen very often.
The minute I saw all
these college students raving about The Brady Bunch Movie, the minute I
saw how many young people (including a lot of movie snobs!) were going
on and on about how clever it was and how funny it was, well at that
point I knew that I had to see it. This was one of those word
mouth movies that even back in 1995 you could tell was almost
guaranteed to turn into a cult favorite.
"Cindy, you know by
tattling on your friends, you're really just tattling on yourself.
tattling on your friends, you're just telling them that you're a
Now is that the tale you want to tell?"
I went to the Brady Bunch Movie with my girlfriend Diana (now my
wife Diana) in 1995. And we just absolutely loved it.
IT. Man this was one hilarious movie. Every last
about the characters, and the costumes, and the dialogue, was just
perfect. I mean, right down to the fact that Jan swings her
when she walks, and Marcia sometimes mispronounces "school" as
"skyewl." That happens on the TV show too (if you pay
attention). And in the movie they
just absolutely nailed it.
They also turned Jan into a complete psychopath
What is funny about how much I loved this movie is the
fact that I'm not even all that big a Brady Bunch
fan. I mean, yeah I know most of the episodes, and yeah I
most of the major
themes and storylines. But I don't know every single little
detail about every obscure little episode. I was never all
big a Brady Bunch junkie.
yeah, I wasn't all that big a Brady Bunch fan. I didn't get
100% of all the little jokes in the movie. But my wife, on
the other hand,
well she is a HUGE Brady Bunch fan. She knows every single
subplot of every TV episode that was ever made. She is the
of person where you can say "Hey Greg loses the blueprints for his
father" and she can immediately tell you what the subplots were for
that episode and
what clothes all the kids were wearing. She has
always had that type of scarily impressive knowledge when it comes
to Brady Bunch trivia.
Well my wife sat through this movie and she just LOVED it.
Every five minutes she would point out some little detail to
that no one else in the theater would have caught, but she did because
she knew all the episodes so well. She would say things like
that's Sam the Butcher's shirt. One of the extras has it on."
Or "Hey that's the exact same sentence Greg said to Peter in
episode xxx." She was right on top of nearly every little
joke or running background gag in the entire movie. And I was
when she started pointing out how many of them there were.
what I am trying to say here is that whoever wrote this movie knew the
TV show very well. VERY well. To the point that
actually one great subtle joke in the movie that my
wife didn't even catch.
The joke that I will always remember from this movie (and the one that
forever clinches its place in my comedy movie hall of fame) is the song
Greg is singing whenever he is trying to hit on a girl.
movie, Greg is forever walking around school with a guitar.
whenever he sees a groovy chick who is really happening in a far out
way that he wants to ask out, he will walk over to her and he will
start singing her a song.
"Clowns never laughed before. Beanstalks never grew.
Ponies never ran before, until I met you."
I thought that this was just a throwaway joke. I thought that
writers just came up with a lame 70's song that Greg might have written
for a girl, and they wrote it specifically for the movie. And
wife Diana thought that too. Neither of us had any idea that
a song that Greg Brady actually sang one time in an episode on the TV
Greg and his infamous "clowns" song
I didn't get that joke for nearly half a decade. Because it
years later, and I remember that day like it was yesterday.
had an episode of The Brady Bunch on in the background at home, and I
think she was cross stitching or something on the couch.
And I heard her start laughing.
I came in the room to see what was cracking her up.
And holy flurking shnit.
don't remember what episode was on TV, but it was probably one of the
first Johnny Bravo episodes. And there was Greg, tuning his
guitar. And he was humming a little song as he was tuning.
And sure enough, that was the exact tune he was singing under
breath. "Clowns never laughed before. Beanstalks
grew. Ponies never ran before, until I met you."
It was just a little throwaway moment from a TV episode in
1972 or 1973, yet the
makers of The Brady Bunch Movie remembered it and they put it in the
in 1995. And my wife, one of the biggest Brady Bunch nerds
didn't even catch it for nearly five years.
Now THAT is the type of comedy movie you have to be impressed by.
In the end, The Brady Bunch Movie is one of my favorite
comedy movies of the 90's, and it is an absolute must see if you have
even HEARD of the TV show. Forget seeing every episode,
being a huge fan of the TV show. If you have even HEARD of
show you will get a kick out of this movie. It is probably
one of the
top five spoof movies I have ever seen in my life. Every
detail, every little homage, every little side joke or background joke
or callback joke or character detail is just perfect.
Like I said before,
whoever sat down and wrote this movie really knew their stuff.
It is an absolute orgy of subtle little Brady Bunch references.
And the clothes are just ridiculous
By the way, before I sign off, here is the funny part.
When I first sat down to write
this review, I originally only intended to write about the actors.
I originally planned to sit here and tell you how amazing
Gary Cole was
as Mike Brady (who is my favorite character in the movie; in the movie
Mike Brady is forever handing out lectures like he is Captain Obvious.)
I was originally going to write about how Christine
"Skewl" Taylor was an
absolute dead ringer for Marcia. I originally planned to
about how funny Jennifer Elise Cox was as Jan and how awesome Shelley
Long was as Carol.
That was the original plan for my review. But I
got so wrapped up in writing about how much I love the movie, and how
funny it is, that now
I don't have any more time to write about the actors. And
quite amazing considering the fact that EVERY SINGLE ACTOR IN THIS
MOVIE IS PERFECT. Seriously, find me a comedy with more
actors in their roles than in the Brady Bunch Movie. I'm not
you will be able to do it.
Although mostly, it is all about Marcia
In the end, I guess that is my review. I love the
Brady Bunch Movie so much that I wrote my entire review before I
remembered to even mention all the
hilarious actors in it. I got so wrapped up in writing about
funny it was, and how brilliant the storyline was, and how deep and
subtle some of the references were, that I forgot there were even
actors in it at all. There aren't many movies you can say
Oh, and be sure to keep an eye out for the one and
only Davy Jones. Even though the movie is set in 1995, Marcia
still has an enormous crush on him (again, this is lifted right out of
the TV show). And that always cracks me up because in 1995
people in the world had no idea who Davy Jones still was. My
barely even knew who he was, and she knew the TV show. So
for Davy's cameo at the dance at the end of the movie. That
Remember, nobody could bring 50 year old chaperones to their
knees like Davy Jones could. Nobody.
"He's dreeeeeeeamy," said no one ever in 1995
favorite IMDB user reviews about The Brady Bunch Movie:
Irony at its finest - 12
is the film that started the ironic re-makes, most recently seen in
Starsky and Hutch. This is a fantastically funny film, especially if
you remember the old TV series. It pokes fun at the original (only
gently) and has bucket loads of in-jokes and references. It takes you
back to all those American TV shows that we got in England and were
shown on Saturday morning TV and all the time through the holiday. The
appearance of the Monkees just tops it off. If you're expecting a
faithful re-creation of the original Brady Bunch, you're going to be a
bit shocked. If you're expecting gross-out gags and teen humour, you're
going to be disappointed. However, if you want a funny, clever,
tongue-in-cheek and, yes, heart-warming comedy with a modern spin,
definitely check this out. Finally, this film also showcases the genius
that is Gary Cole, probably one of the most under-rated actors around.
Also see Office Space for more of this superb actor, and Midnight
Caller and American Gothic, if you can find them.
Brilliant idea - bring
the Brady Bunch forward 25 years! - 27 August 2009
this movie was announced way back when, my first reaction was 'can't
they leave anything alone?' Especially when the first descriptions said
Marcia would have a gay girlfriend... I just thought the whole thing
would be sickening. I was wrong.
The beauty of this movie is
that they take the Brady Bunch, right out of 1970, and drop them into
1995. HOW such a thing could be, I can't say, but it was a brilliant
idea. Somehow, in the middle of the 1990's, the Brady family is firmly
entrenched in 1970. They've got the cars, the clothes, the music, it's
like the whole world around them doesn't exist! They either don't
notice, or don't care. For example, Greg drives Marcia to their high
school in Mrs. Brady's station wagon and along the way they are
listening to an 8 track tape of Davy Jones singing. WHERE would they
get an 8 track tape like that - and in 1995?! Well, don't worry too
much about that, just accept it and laugh at it. Okay, so they get to
school and Marcia says she has written to Davy Jones to see if he will
sing at their school's dance. Greg scoffs at the idea because 'a big
star like that is too busy to come to our dance!' I mean, where do they
see Davy Jones as a star at all in the 1990's? He's got no hits, you'd
never see him on TV... yet to the Bradys, he is a superstar and they
are playing 8 track tapes of him gotten from who-knows-where.
would they get their flare-bottom pants and gaudy patterned clothes?
The square-toed mid-heel shoes? The paisley shirts? Their cars are
right out of 1970 or so (though not the same cars they drove on the TV
show). Where? When? How? You don't ask such questions, you just accept
and laugh at the insanity of it all.
The beauty of this movie is
watching the 1970 Brady Family as they interact with the world around
them which is 25 years further along. Okay, they do put some edge on
the family members and they do get a little fun poked at them - like
when Greg as "Johnny Bravo" gets up to perform at his school dance and
says 'I wrote this song for the grooviest chick at Westdale High' and
girls run screaming out of the gymnasium. And the drunk woman who lives
next door has the hots for Mr. Brady - and Greg - and even Peter.
a really funny movie. I never thought I'd have liked it but when I
finally watched it, I realized what an ingenious idea it was. There is
a sequel to this movie which IMO is one of the reasons sequels are
usually no good, just an attempt to cash in on a good original.
even as this movie makes fun of the Brady family, it does so with some
heart. The humor is good-natured; the family members are still all
likable and are treated with affection even as they are the source of
the humor. If you always loved the Brady Bunch, this movie won't anger
you by the way they were treated. Yes, the joke is on them, but they're
laughing along with us - even if they don't get the joke in quite the
same way we do. I like this movie!
Funny stuff - 26
ever there was a movie I never expected to recommend to someone, well,
this is certainly it. I figured it was going to be another lame TV to
big screen adaption. I never saw it in the theater or rented it. But I
Cole's face, who at the time I'd most recently had seen in TV's
"American Gothic" as Sheriff Lucas Buck. So I figured I'd check it out
fro a few minutes just for his performance. The tongue-in-cheek and
double-entendre writing and acting were so on the mark!! I was
constantly giggling and laughing. I was never a Brady Bunch fan, so
maybe that made the movie funnier to me, but I don't think so. It was
just plainly a hoot. It's right up there with the first entries in the
"Airplane!" and "Naked Gun" series. Comedy you had to pay attention to
so you wouldn't miss the next joke in this clever spoof. If you rated
it low, watch it again without bias. Tell me lines like
"Doug, do you have protection?"
"Oh yes ma'am, assorted colors and textures!"
aren't genuinely funny!!!
Extremely funny, very
clever too - 11 September 2000
of all the movies that have been made from old TV shows, this is
perhaps the best. The plot is as thin as one you see on the show and
the dialogue is killer - when Marcia is insecure about her injured nose
on a date, the guy reassures her, "its not your nose I'm after". Quite
alot of the jokes are of the double-meaning style and most of them are
very funny. Gary Cole takes the acting honors, as he is just as sincere
are Robert Reed was. I was never the biggest fan of the show, but this
movie made me wish I were. Also it was great seeing Davy Jones of the
Mind Blowing! - 10
anyone old enough to have seen the original series, this movie truly
blows the lid off of the whole TV show and pokes fun at the whole
family and concept at every turn. They easily could have done a formula
tv-ish movie and instead they make a complete parody that is
screamingly funny. Not to mention that the fact that the cast are
dead-ringers for the originals--in fact Jan is so _frighteningly_ like
the original that it'll send shivers up your back. Four of the original
cast also make cameos in the film (but you'll have to really look to
find some of them), and the film blends the whole campy concept with
the "retro" plastic nineties--a perfect joke on fashions of this
decade. Very worth watching!
Great self-mocking fun -
2 August 2002
1970's family The Bradys find themselves in the 1990's but still with
the same virtues we all know. However their next door neighbour is
trying to get all the land around the area acquired to build a mall. He
has been hiding their mail and causing them to build up $20K in unpaid
taxes. The kids set about trying to raise the money to save the family
Reading the reviews shows me that people just don't get
this film. I think this is a great example of what should happen when
you remake a cheesy TV show from all our childhoods. The whole film is
one big self-mocking joke about the values of the Bradys. The plot is
not really important but it is a good summing up of the daft plots they
had back then, however here it is just a device for the jokes.
joke here is that we have a slightly modern spin on the family. We see
them being all cheesy and full of morals even when surrounded by the
dog eat dog world of LA in the nineties, but they are still the same. I
find this funny and the moral lessons etc are all delivered tongue in
cheek. The best bit of self mocking is the modern expansion of the
characters – this thing is full of innuendoes and nice touches – like
Jan hearing voices etc
The cast are all spot on. Long and Cole
talk it straight but let their looks and glances tell a different story
(Long is excellent), while the kids are all very very good. I'd never
seen the show till after this so I didn't see any cameos or anything
but really this isn't important.
This is great – you don't need
to have seen the show. It's wonderfully self mocking and very very
funny. Those who criticise it for not being serious or for being a joke
just aren't getting it at all. Great fun!
favorite trivia about The Brady Bunch Movie:
* Christopher Daniel Barnes, who plays Greg Brady here, was among the
cast of the NBC TV series Day by Day, as Ross Harper. In a memorable
1989 episode, Ross Harper falls asleep and dreams he is Chuck Brady,
the "lost" Brady, in a very clever "Brady Bunch" reunion, with much of
the original cast appearing.
* Mrs. Whitfield, the teacher whom safety monitor Bobby shakes down for
stealing school supplies, was the name of a teacher from The Brady
* A lot of scenes shown in trailers were cut at the last minute due to
objection from producer Sherwood Schwartz. These included a grunge band
scene in the garage with Greg and Eric, and a seduction scene between
Mrs. Dittmeyer and Peter.
* In one school scene, the Patridge Family's bus passes in front of the
* As he heads off to his business meeting, Carol Brady tells her
husband, Mike, to "Go get 'em, Tiger", and then wonders to herself
"Tiger, Tiger: what ever happened to that dog?" Tiger was the name of
the Bradys' dog in the TV series. But, after the first two seasons, the
dog was never seen again, even though his dog house was still out back.
The movie is supposed to take place in the later seasons. So, that line
is an inside joke to the show.
* Though Christine Taylor plays the older sister, she is actually
younger than Jennifer Elise Cox who plays the middle sister.
* Gary Cole, playing Mike Brady, went on to play Vice President Bob
Russell in The West Wing. Interestingly, the man pretending to be Carol
Brady's first husband in A Very Brady Sequel, Tim Matheson, also went
on to play the Vice President John Hoynes in "The West Wing".
* After 'Jan' runs away from home, she is seen walking a dark city
street with provocative music playing in the background. This is an
in-joke reference to the original Jan Brady, Eve Plumb. Plumb famously
portrayed a runaway-turned-prostitute in the TV-movie "Dawn: Portrait
of a Teenage Runaway".
favorite scene in The Brady Bunch Movie:
I remember nearly wetting my pants with laughter when
Marcia gets Davy Jones to sing at the school dance and nobody but the
chaperones has any idea who the fuck he is. Davy Jones was
awfully good sport for agreeing to do that. Oh and also
at the IMDB
Brady Bunch Movie
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