Space Jam Blu-ray
Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Michael Jordan
Directed by Joe Pytka
Originally released 1996
Warner Home Entertainment 2011

Space Jam Blu-ray is the only way to watch this very enjoyable and family friendly mixture of animation and live action. It features all of the important Looney Tunes while many others have cameos. It also features a who’s who of mid-nineties NBA stars in bit parts and Michael Jordan and Larry Bird is bigger roles. This is a movie Dad and Mom will enjoy as much as the kids.

Space Jam has an almost biographical plot: Michael Jordan retires from basketball to play baseball. Aliens called Nerdlucks try to kidnap the Looney Tunes for a space based amusement park. Bugs Bunny cites the so-called rules of animation and challenges them to a basketball game. The Nerdlucks steal the talents of a few NBA players. The Looney Tunes feel they are in trouble and kidnap Michael Jordan to help them. Jordan gets help from Patrick Ewing and Bill Murray. Game on.

You really do not have to even remotely care about basketball to enjoy Space Jam. It has quite a few really funny moments, some great physical comedy moments (some by humans), and some really superb bits of animation. The writing is also very good: Bugs tells Daffy, “What kind of Mickey Mouse organization would name a team the Ducks?”

The problem with computer animated Looney Tunes is everything looks too real.  For example, Bugs Bunny has shadows just like a real human, giving him coat with two tones of grey when the original hand drawn cell version has one. Verisimilitude does not work on cartoons. Instead, it makes the cartoons look fake.

Fans of the original Looney Tunes will appreciate the subtle nods to the originals such as the Schlesinger Gym. There is even a nod to the opening of The Flintstones.

Special features include a Commentary track with Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and director Joe Pyutka; Jammin With Bugs Bunnu and Michael Jordan; two music videos; trailer.


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