Failing to capture any of the wit of the original cartoons, this is the rare film that kids will hate as much as their parents
A Tom and Jerry movie should be a hard thing to mess up. You’ve got an iconic cartoon cat and mouse duo who specialise in the kind of slapstick that should have kids glued to the screen. It hardly has to be a masterpiece, but a brand this strong should be capable of delivering serviceable family entertainment with minimum fuss. Somehow, though, the grating and bizarre reboot Tom & Jerry fails to come anywhere close, dropping the pair into a boring and convoluted live-action story that will bore even the least discerning audience members.
As Tom and Jerry attempt to make a home in New York, they cross paths with the hapless Kayla (Chloe Grace Moretz), who is trying to get a temp job at a swanky hotel that needs fresh staff to help throw a lavish wedding for a rich influencer couple. Jerry plays antagonist, Kayla being tasked to remove the unwanted mouse before the guests arrive with Tom as her trusty assistant. Bafflingly, though, this doesn’t lead to a bevy of set-pieces of Tom trying to catch Jerry, and the pair are instead sidelined in favour of a string of insufferable human characters.
Almost every line of dialogue is painful to listen to – both the script and the soundtrack feel like they were put together by a focus group from 15 years ago – and the cringeworthy performances make a perfect match for this horrible writing. Even the one-line supporting cast look embarrassed to be involved.
Even at a technical level, Tom & Jerry is barely competent. The cartoon-live action integration is less convincing than the 33-year-old Who Framed Roger Rabbit and egregious ADR makes for far too many scenes where voices and lips don’t match. Full of dated cultural references and dull filler scenes, Tom & Jerry is a film for no one, a misfire that is guaranteed to be hated equally by parents and children alike.
Tom & Jerry is now available to stream on Now.Where to watch