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BUDDY

SYNOPSIS:
Buddy is the true story of Gertrude ‘Trudy’ Lintz (Rene Russo), an eccentric socialite in the 1920s who is the most generous animal keeper since Noah. On her New York estate, she, her physician husband Bill (Robbie Coltrane) and her loyal assistant Dick (Alan Cumming) care for a menagerie as extensive as a zoo’s: from dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, fish, geese, pigeons, horses, owls, snakes to a kitten. Adding to the fun are her four chimpanzees whom she treats as her children. But her gorilla, Buddy, is her favourite child. Inevitably, Buddy grows up, and keeping him becomes increasingly dangerous, not because he is vicious but because he can no longer fit into the human world he lives in, and yet can’t be his true self either. Finally, Trudy has to make the decision all mothers face - she has to let go…

"Let me confess from the start, I am animal-crazy. But having said that, it doesn’t mean that I am not discerning about my animal-flicks. The Born Free equivalent of the gorillas, Buddy is a delightful charmer guaranteed to lift the bleakest spirits. It is one of those magical film experiences that manage to express childlike wonder in a tale where animal interaction and passionate love for our fellow beast take first priority. Renee Russo has never been more convincing or looked lovelier as Gertrude Lintz, the eccentric socialite who treats her numerous pets like children. Backed by a solid support cast, the first half hour introduces us to her brood; we cannot fail but be enchanted by the mischievous chimps, who roller blade, ride horses, mix martinis and dress in designer clothes. And if that doesn’t impress, wait till you see the chimp do a fan dance and throw knives in the kitchen! It is such an enjoyable ride to slip through the keyhole and enjoy the fantasy instead of wondering how the house could be so tidy, doesn’t anyone ever lose their temper, and let’s look out for the animatronics. And yes, of course it’s over the top - how many full-grown gorillas have you seen putting on lipstick and clutching a red security blanket? But with top class animatronics, heart felt performances and a musical score that sings, it is a joy to be transported into this magical world of animal delights, which we are told is based on a true story. Buddy will bewitch, seduce and capture your heart."
Louise Keller

"That’s Louise for you – always ready to melt at animal antics. True, this is a remarkably animalistic film: there are more animals on show than at an 1890 sideshow. Also true, the animals are endearingly, endlessly, effortlessly – natural. Unlike humans. So even when they ARE dressed in clothes, they are still animals. That’s what we all like. The fact that the ARE dressed can bother some people. Well, yes, I know, this is a bit perverse, but people who say this demeans the animals, or takes away their dignity, are themselves humanising and thus demeaning animals, by assuming they have human traits. This story reveals one woman’s obsession – fed by an evidently rich husband – for animals, and you might say she was a misguided fanatic. All I can say is that if the world’s many misguided fanatics were obsessed by the love of animals, maybe we’d have a better world. Think on that a minute. As an entertaining and surprising film, Buddy is good value: and one of the biggest surprises is how Bill puts up with his wife. They appear not to have had a sex life, and had no children. But they do have loyal servants, they love their animals and treat them like beloved family: can you say the same for all your folk?"
Andrew L. Urban

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BUDDY (PG)
(US)

CAST: Rene Russo, Robbie Coltrane, Alan Cumming, Irma P. Hall, Peter Elliott, Mak Wilson, Lyn Robertson Bruce, Mark Sealey, Rob Tygner, Michelan Sisti, Peter Hurst, Leif Tilden, Star Townshend, Paul Reubens

DIRECTOR: Caroline Thompson

PRODUCER: Steve Nicolaides, Fred Fuchs

SCRIPT: Caroline Thompson

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Steve Mason

EDITOR: Jonathan Shaw

MUSIC: Elmer Bernstein

PRODUCTION DESIGN: David Nichols, Daniel Lomino

RUNNING TIME: 84 minutes

 

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia TriStar

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: September 18, 1997 (Melb, Brisb); Sept 25: Sydney

AUSTRALIAN VIDEO RELEASE: September 9, 1998

AUST VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia TriStar

R.R.P: $24.95







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