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NUTTY PROFESSOR II:  THE KLUMPS
(UNCENSORED DIRECTOR'S CUT)

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Review by Gordon Justesen

Stars: Eddie Murphy, Janet Jackson, Larry Miller, John Ales
Director: Peter Segal
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1 Surround
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1
Studio: Universal
Features: See Review
Length: 109 Minutes
Release Date: May 22, 2001

Film ***

There is a unique brilliance in Eddie Murphy that must be realized when watching Nutty Professor II: The Klumps. Besides being one of the most profound comedic geniuses of our time, Murphy has also been known in playing multiple roles in numerous films. Watching this movie shows how dedicated of a performer Eddie Murphy is. When The Nutty Professor was released in 1996, it took that talent to a whole new level, with Murphy playing not only the title character, but five others as well, including four members of the title character’s family, The Klumps.  That film established one of the funniest scenes ever with the famous dinner table scene, which I’m sure all of you are familiar with. Now comes Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, where Murphy outdoes himself completely with his multiple character talent. The actor’s collaboration with acclaimed make-up artist Rick Baker results in the astonishing recreation of the characters of Sherman Klump, Papa Klump, Mama Klump, Ernie Klump, Grandma Klump, and even Papa Klump at a younger age. Where as the first Nutty Professor had the whole family together for mainly two scenes, the sequel has them in many scenes, which is helped by some truly state of the art visual effects.

The story has heavyset, bashful, lovable professor Sherman Klump succeeding in creating a youth formula, which can reduce the age of anyone and make he or she feel young again, literally. The professor is also falling head over heels in love with fellow science professor Denise Gaines (Janet Jackson). The problem is that can’t seem to shake away his alter ego, Buddy Love, who was created in the first movie when Sherman wanted to reprogram his DNA in order to lose weight. Buddy, now hidden within Sherman, causes the professor to say crude and outlandish things that the actual Sherman Klump wouldn’t dare say. In one hilarious scene, the professor attempts to propose to Denise, Buddy causes him so say some outlandish innuendos, which are backed up by a trio of singing mariachis. The professor decides to get rid of Buddy through extracting the alter ego’s DNA. Sherman succeeds, but is soon re-incarnated through dog hair, making Buddy a human with canine tendencies. Murphy’s reprise of Buddy Love is an example of the actor’s comedic genius, as he gives Buddy’s hyperactive personality with a touch of a hound. It simply has to be seen to be believed and laughed at.

At the center of the movie is Murphy’s outstanding portrayal of the Klumps. There’s a gentle subplot involving Papa and Mama Klump failing to rekindle the romance in their life, with Papa concealing a possible impotence. Granny Klump, the most sexually outspoken one of the family, is in a steamy affair of her own with elderly frail man who Papa dubs “the world’s oldest living Negro.” Then of course at the heart is Sherman, who is quite simply one of the most lovable and pleasing characterizations Eddie Murphy has ever given us. In both this movie and the previous one, Sherman is presented as a kind, wonderful soul with a gift for science and a desire to be in love. This time, he has found it, but the side effects, particularly that of Buddy Love, threaten to destroy it.

I could include more quotes and tell more of the plot, but they are frankly too crude to put into words, but the movie has endless sight gags that are flat out hilarious, including that of a hamster who explodes into a Godzilla-like creature and attacks Sherman’s boss in an unusually outrageous manner. Plus, there’s yet another over-the-top family dinner scene, this time at a public restaurant that will have you laughing just as hard as the dinner scene in the original movie did.

The plot maybe one-note, and the crude humor might be a little too much for some, but Nutty Professor II: The Klumps is in everyway equal of its predecessor, and proves more than ever that Eddie Murphy is one of the greatest comedic performers of our time.

Video ****

Universal offers up yet another winning transfer, carrying the appropriate Collector’s Edition seal of approval. Picture quality is thoroughly crisp and alive with its colors. There isn’t a single scratch or inch of grain or softness detected whatsoever, and the movie’s visual effects show up terrifically in supreme form. Overall, this newly uncensored reissue of The Klumps bares no difference in terms of quality from the original release, which was also a grand looking disc.

Audio ***1/2

Again, no distinctive difference from the original disc. Comedies usually don’t generate a good use of the audio track, but the disc for The Klumps is an exception to say the least. The disc contains both a 5.1 Dolby Digital and a DTS track. The 5.1 presentation provides a surprising good use, particularly of the movie’s lively musical score, and the physical comedy provides terrific use of side speakers, and rear speakers as well. A flawless and wonderful job!

Features ****

A few added extras onto what was already a knockout list of features on the original Klumps disc. Included are some additional scenes in the film that were not used in the original, but in my opinion, the unseen footage didn’t really need to bare an unrated version, since the original movie is a PG-13 rated movie, and the added scenes, or rather additional lines of dialogue, don’t even warrant an R rating, from what I can tell. Aside from that, this is a nicely loaded disc. Included is a behind the scenes featurette on the making of the movie, a commentary from director Peter Segal, a conversation with Peter Segal and producer Brian Grazer, a storyboard to final feature comparison, the original Sherman Klump make-up test which is most interesting to look at, Janet Jackson’s wardrobe test, four music videos including Janet Jackson’s “Doesn’t Really Matter”, Sisqo’s “Thong Song”, Jay-Z’s “Hey Papi”, and Musiq’s “Just Friends”, and a trailer for the movie.

Summary:

In your face comedy doesn’t get as outrageous as Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, and if you’re as a devoted fan as I am of Eddie Murphy, this is a piece of entertainment you can’t afford to miss.