Speed Racer

For a pair who made their bones with movies about pistol-packing lesbians (Bound) and gravity-defying kung fu (The Matrix), there's always been a puzzling air of Sturm und Drang around the work of the Wachowskis, a sense of weightiness that undercuts the high-concept hang time of their ideas. Speed Racer, the duo's bazillion-dollar rendering of the cartoon beloved by 1960s kids and 1990s college stoners alike, is a… well, I don't know what the hell it is, to be honest. Freakishly perverse, this is an immense, Otter Pop–colored nostalgic thing that expends so much energy replicating every last widget and geegaw from its source that it forgets to be, you know, fun. While the wall-to-wall special effects are undeniably amazing, it also feels groundbreaking in another regard: For perhaps the first time in history, there exists a movie that cannot be saved with frequent cutaways to a monkey in overalls. by Andrew Wright
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Credits
Director
Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski
Cast
Susan Sarandon, Emile Hirsch