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Encino Man

Entry updated 19 December 2022. Tagged: Film.

Film (1992; vt California Man). Hollywood Pictures (see The Walt Disney Company), Touchwood Pacific Partners I, Warner Bros. Produced by George Zaloom. Directed by Les Mayfield. Written by Shawn Schepps, based on a story by Schepps and Zaloom. Cast includes Sean Astin, Brendan Fraser and Pauly Shore. 88 minutes. Colour.

Limp version of the old story of the caveman who is dug up and resuscitated, as previously seen in Trog (1970), Schlock (1973) and Iceman (1984) among others; see also Apes as Human. This made-for-teenagers movie, clearly calculated to appeal to the same audience as that for Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989) and Wayne's World (1992), portrays Stoney Brown (Shore) and Dave Morgan (Astin), two high-school nerds who dig up Link (Fraser) after an earthquake disturbs the soil in an Encino swimming-pool excavation (see California), thaw him from Suspended Animation, and enrol him at their school (after a wash and haircut) as a "Lithuanian" friend. The caveman's simple high spirits win him many friends, and the high-school hard man is publicly humiliated by him. The film's various attempts at Satire are uninventive. Stoney Brown, however, is always amusing, largely because of the vigour of his mostly ad-libbed esoteric teen vocabulary. [PN]


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