Frank Oz updates a classic. I'd never read Levin's book, nor did I watch the prior film adaptations, but I still feel it's quite obvious where and how Oz' version deviates from the original. If I'd had to wager a bet, I'd say that Oz' version is the one I'm most likely to prefer, but I'll have to see the older ones first to be sure.
After Joanna's latest TV show flops, she and her husband move to Connecticut to start their lives anew. They arrive in the quaint town of Stepford, where it appears time has stood still. Everybody looks their best all the time, the wealth is extreme and nobody ever complains. It is obvious something weird is going on there.
The performances are gleefully over-the-top, the cinematography is bold and colorful and the comedy is just right. Oz doesn't even bother hiding the mystery of the village, instead he has a little fun with gender roles/reversals and twists the original story a bit further to come to a satisfying ending. A fun surprise.
Oz' remake of the 60s film and Broadway musical. It's a cheeky and juicy effort, the kind of thing you'd expect from Oz. The primary reason why this film still works is the fact that the cheese is baked into the concept, everybody clearly had a lot of fun making this and as an audience it's very easy to go along with.
Worthy but flawed
A pretty basic heist film. I expected a film that was a little more distinctive from Oz, but apparently he was fine with plain old genre work and a little twist at the end, something that was practically required around the turn of the millennium. The result is a respectable, but rather boring feature.
Some big names were hired to draw in the audience. De Niro, Norton and Brando have enough charisma to carry a film by themselves, putting them together in a film means money in the bank. But with a dull and predictable plot, bland characterization and a lack of sparkle in the direction, not all that much comes of it.
If you like heist films, the film is quite entertaining. Apart from that, there's just very little to recommend here. A less predictable twist, 30 minutes cut from the runtime and some tighter editing might've helped to salvage this film, in its current state though, it's little more than random filler.