Born to Be Wild

1995 Directed by John Grey. Starring Wil Horneff, Helen Shaver, Peter Boyle, John C. McGinley.

REVIEWED By Joey O'Bryan, Fri., April 7, 1995

A rebellious Generation-X youngster finds meaning in his angst-ridden existence when he befriends a guy in a gorilla suit -- oh sorry -- I mean a female gorilla, and frees her from her vile prison at a flea market. The goal of taking her across the Canadian border to freedom leads to many wacky high jinks as the two travel cross country. And there you have the story of Born to Be Wild: Ridiculously plotted and overlong even at an hour and 45 minutes, this would-be piece of “family entertainment” spends the first quarter of its running time replaying many of the key plot points of John Badham's Project X, while the middle section collapses into a series of embarrassing montages of the gorilla monkeying (sorry) around, until the whole enterprise ludicrously becomes a programmed tearjerker that will leave even the most easily entertained kiddies twiddling their thumbs in boredom. Surprisingly, the actors actually try to deliver passable performances in spite of the underwhelming material, but their efforts are wasted upon a painfully condescending and unimaginative script that seems to have been written by a committee of Warner Bros. executives trying to cash in on the current trend of cuddly creatures in children's films (i.e., Free Willy, Andre, Monkey Trouble, etc.). In the end, Born to Be Wild insults the intelligence of both children and adults, and, therefore, worth nobody's precious time.

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Aug. 30, 1996


Born to Be Wild, John Grey, Wil Horneff, Helen Shaver, Peter Boyle, John C. McGinley

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