Writer: Brad Bird, Matthew Robbins, Brent Maddock, S.S. Wilson (Screenplay) Mick Garris (Story)
Starring: Hume Cronyn, Jessica Tandy, Frank McRae, Elizabeth Pena, Michael Carmine, Dennis Boutsikaris, Tom Aldredge, Jane Hoffman
Plot: Apartment block tenants seek the aid of alien mechanical life-forms to save their building from demolition.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Story: *batteries not included starts by introducing us to Frank (Cronyn), Faye (Tandy) Harry (Noble), Marisa (Pena) and Mason (Boutsikaris) who all are the remaining residents living in the middle of a building site, constantly being hounded by Carlos (Carmine) trying to force them to move out to the building can be demolished.
The lives of these residents takes a surprise turn when robotic aliens enter the apartment fixing the damaged caused within as the resident try to communicate with them. The Aliens become part guardians of the residents who continue to fight to keep their homes.
*batteries not included is a charming comedy fantasy that we get to see the serious side of the human life where people are forced relocated. I think this point comes through strong with each side be it the residents the rich or the thugs to remove the characters it all comes off great. We also get to see the unknown with the robots appearing in the story. overall this story is easy to follow and truly enjoyable throughout.
Hume Cronyn: Frank Riley is the café owner and husband to Faye, he does everything he can to look after her and run a business but it is his wish that comes true when the aliens arrive. We see Frank start to have to make the difficult decision about caring for Faye in her condition. Hume is good in this role leading the film.
Jessica Tandy: Faye Riley is the wife of Frank who is suffering with dementia, she spends nearly every moment of her waking day waiting for her son to return and making friends with her condition. Jessica is great in this role where we get to see the most laughs from her character.
Frank McRae: Harry Noble is the former fighter that now is a mute living in the building watching television most of his time. He finds a way to communicate with the aliens that the others can’t. Frank is good in this role where we get to see the stronger character with a heart of gold.
Elizabeth Pena: Marisa Esteval is a pregnant resident of the home who has been getting harassed by the people trying to get her out but she is strong independent woman. Elizabeth is good in this role going through her own struggles in the story.
Support Cast: *batteries not included has a supporting cast that is mostly just Carlos who is trying to chase them out and artist Mason living in the building, we don’t really have a need for a big cast to make this enjoyable.
Director Review: Matthew Robbins – Matthew gives us a truly enjoyable touching and charming fantasy film.
Comedy: *batteries not included has good laughs throughout mixing slapstick with jokes well.
Family: *batteries not included is one I do think the family can all enjoy.
Fantasy: *batteries not included throws us into a world where aliens can be friendly and not a threat.
Sci-Fi: *batteries not included uses the alien side of the story for the science fiction side of the story.
Settings: *batteries not included keeps most of the settings inside the building showing us how these unlikely residents could become friends.
Special Effects: *batteries not included has special effects which still look good today when it comes to the robots.
Suggestion: *batteries not included is one I do think people will enjoy. (Watch)
Best Part: Robots.
Worst Part: Not one.
Chances of Tears:
Chances of Sequel: No
Post Credits Scene: No
Oscar Chances: No
Runtime: 1 Hour 46 Minutes
Tagline: Five ordinary people needed a miracle. Then one night, Faye Riley left the window open.
Overall: Truly enjoyable fantasy comedy.