Bébé's Kids

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Bébé's Kids

Post  msistarted on Fri Dec 10, 2010 10:26 am

Bébé's Kids, released to VHS and DVD as Robin Harris' Bébé's Kids, is a 1992 American animated film produced by the Hudlin Brothers and Hyperion Pictures, directed by Bruce W. Smith, and released on July 31, 1992 by Paramount Pictures.

The first animated feature to feature an entirely African-American main cast, the film is based upon comedian Robin Harris' "Bébé's Kids" stand-up comedy act. It features the voices of Faizon Love, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Marques Houston, Nell Carter, and Tone Lōc. Tom Everett, Rich Little, and Louie Anderson also lend their voices.

* 1 Plot
* 2 Cast
* 3 Background
o 3.1 Original stand-up version
o 3.2 Animated film version
* 4 Reception
* 5 Box office
* 6 Home media
* 7 References
* 8 External links

[edit] Plot

The film is based on a stand-up routine of Robin Harris that is shown in a brief live-action segment at the beginning of the film. The story of the film begins with an animated version of Robin Harris (Faizon Love) woefully recounting his troubles to a blind bartender. He traces his problems all the way back to Jamika (Vanessa Bell Calloway), an attractive female that he met at a funeral. Outside the premises, Robin approaches Jamika and asks her out. Jamika picks up her son Leon (Wayne Collins, Jr.) from the babysitter and invites Robin to come along with her to an amusement park named Fun World, to which Robin agrees. The next day, Jamika introduces Robin to the children of her friend Bébé: Kahil (Marques Houston), LaShawn (Jonell Green) and Pee-Wee (Tone-Lōc). The group travels to Fun World, but are confronted by security before they can enter and are warned that they are being watched. Upon entering the park, the kids are set loose and promptly wreak havoc.

After finally calming the kids down, Robin runs into his neurotic ex-wife, Dorthea (Myra J.). After going on a couple of rides, Robin and Jamika let the kids off on their own again as they attempt to enjoy a ride through the Tunnel of Love, where Jamika commends Robin for his endurance. As Robin and Jamika go on a trip, Leon tries to fit himself in with Bébé's Kids, but is unsuccessful. The kids then resume their trouble until they are caught by the security. However, they escape from the security's trap and convince a bunch of other kids to spread the chaos. Meanwhile, Dorthea and her food-loving friend, Vivian (Nell Carter), attempt to sabotage the growing relationship between Robin and Jamika, but are thwarted by Robin's mother insults. Elsewhere, in an abandoned building, Leon and Bébé's Kids are captured by robot versions of the Terminator, Abraham Lincoln, a bear, and Richard Nixon and are put on trial, in which the Terminator acts as the judge who decides whether the kids are worth sending to the electric chair, while Lincoln acts as the kids' lawyer and Nixon acts as the prosecutor. The kids win their freedom through the power of rap, then celebrate their victory by stealing a pirate ship and crashing it into an ocean liner.

Robin and Jamika finally leave Fun World with the kids, as the park begins to fall apart, literally. Robin drops Bébé's Kids off at their apartment, where he sees just how lonely their life really is. Bébé still hasn't returned home and left a note asking Jamika to feed the kids. Back at the bar, Robin has a change of heart and goes back to the kids to hang out with them longer. They then go to Las Vegas, where Bébé's Kids are recognized and everyone runs screaming, followed by a blackout when Pee-Wee pulls a plug that lights the entire city, driving Robin to denounce Pee-Wee as a test tube baby.
[edit] Cast

* Faizon Love as Robin Harris[2]
* Vanessa Bell Calloway as Jamika
* Marques Houston as Khalil
* Jonell Green as LaShawn
* Tone Lōc as Pee Wee
* Wayne Collins, Jr. as Leon
* Myra J. as Dorthea
* Nell Carter as Vivian
* Phillip Glasser as Opie
* Louie Anderson as Security Guard
* Robin Harris as Himself (Stand-up segment at the beginning)

[edit] Background
[edit] Original stand-up version

In the original act, Robin's prospective girlfriend asks him to take her and her son to Fun World, but when he agrees she shows up with four kids.

As it turns out, Bébé's kids are extremely rambunctious, misbehaved, ill-tempered, and flat-out bad. They terrorize park staff, cut off the Tommy the Toad's feet, try to steal Robin's 8-track/radio while he's listening to it, and make a general menace of themselves. Their reputation is so bad that even the police refuse to mess with them.

In a second act, the Kids and his girlfriend pick up Robin from a bar and make him take them to Las Vegas. Pee Wee picks up a power cord and the power goes out.
[edit] Animated film version

The film made a few changes to the original story, reducing the number of Bébé's kids from four to three (with the fourth depicted as Jamika's son instead), and moving the location from Disneyland to a generic amusement park named "Fun World," which is totally demolished by the kids' antics.

Also, the film was heavily toned down in content to make it more appropriate for family viewing, although it still got a PG-13 rating for mild language.
[edit] Reception

The film wasn't well received by critics.[3] [4][5]

Producers of the film believe if the movie featured cartoon dogs the movie would've been more successful.[6]

It was later adapted into a poorly reviewed[7] video game on the Super Nintendo in 1993.
[edit] Box office

From an unknown, but possibly small, budget, Bébé's Kids earned a total $8,442,162 in North America.[8] The film opened at #7 with $3,010,987 in its opening weekend (7/31-8/2), behind Death Becomes Her, Honey, I Blew Up the Kid, Mo' Money, A League of Their Own, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Sister Act.[9][10] Bébé's Kids did not perform well theatrically.[11]
[edit] Home media

It was released on DVD on October 5, 2004, but was discontinued by Paramount in March 2008.[citation needed] The original theatrical and home video release were preceded by the short Itsy Bitsy Spider.[citation needed]

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