TOM AND JERRY (2021) – A pointless revisit to a much loved cartoon, or is it?


Rating: ⭐

Tom and Jerry are the beloved cartoon characters created by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera way back in the 1940’s. In case you are wondering .. Jerry is the mouse while Tom is the cat. A bit like the Road Runner, these two are perpetual enemies and constantly getting into very violent fights with Jerry coming out victorious and Tom getting the short end of the stick.

It is safe to say that in terms of plots or background stories, there are none. So anyone attempting to make a full length live action / animated comedy based on these flat characters is either very brave or out of their mind. Tim Story has the unfortunate task of directing this messy adaptation. In this movie all animals appear as animated two dimensional cartoon characters existing along a live environment. The story takes place in New York city and have the main gag centered around Tom and Jerry causing immeasurable havoc in a hotel preparing for a grand wedding for a famous personality. Right off, I felt that the pairing of two dimensional cartoon characters that are drawn the old fashion style with very little details, does not integrate well with the live environment. The actors are all not convincing when interacting with the cartoon animals and look like they are talking to something else. This is unlike the case where live action is mixed with modern realistic style computer animation.

Poor Chloe Grace Moretz who started her career so promisingly with Kick Ass, Let Me In and the Carrie remake, seem to have taken a big step backwards with this role. She tries hard to make this work but still looks ridiculous when interacting with Tom and Jerry. I guess she can take comfort in that her other cast members also faired poorly.

I think at the end of the day, Tom and Jerry will probably appeal to the very young demography. There is very little here that would provide any interest to anyone above the age of 7. That leads to one asking the question .. “why make this movie in the first place?” Cartoons like Tom and Jerry (and Road Runner, Bugs Bunny etc) belonged to a bygone era where these old cartoon style drawings are best enjoyed in their original TV format. However, when looking at the box office numbers, Tom and Jerry did surprisingly well despite the pandemic situation grossing over US$57 million world wide! Apparently there is a market for such junk! I am just a home movie critic, so what do I know about what will make money and what will not? I just hope there will not be a Tom and Jerry Part 2 in the works.

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