Small Soldiers (1998)


“I love the smell of polyurethane in the morning.” – Major Chip Hazard

Number of Times Seen – Twice (6 Sep 1999 and 24 Jun 2019)

Brief Synopsis – In order to make a new line of toys much more realistic, a programmer uses military technology that actually brings the toys to life.

My Take on it – This is a film that I recall seeing on video not long after it came out and have always had find memories of it due to its great premise.

Watching it now gives a whole new perspective to the film since they utilized cutting edge CGI technology which at the time was in its infancy and even from today’s standards it looks great and realistic the whole way through.

This is a movie that basically takes the overall concept from Toy Story (1995) where toys are able to have personalities and add them to the Joe ante Gremlins (1984) world where we get to see the real world with a slight supernatural or magical effect to it.

The added bonus here is that they even try an give a somewhat plausible reason as to the how and why these toys find themselves animated and able to interact with humans.

This film definitely takes the militaristic aspect of things a bit too far, but that also gives the movie some of its charm.

The cast and voice cast used here is so much fun to watch and I loved the choice to use members of The Dirty Dozen (1967) to voice the soldiers.

I always was a bog fan pf Phil Hartman’s work on SNL and Newsradio and it was great seeing him here in one of his final roles because he adds so much to the atmosphere of the film.

His work here also helps emphasize how great an artist and comedian he was no matter what kind of roles he was given.

Bottom Line – Great premise that works quite well even in the infancy of CGI effects. This film basically takes the idea of the films from the Toy Story series and applies them to a Gremlins type world (Dante of course) and even gives us an explanation as to how toys could become animated and interact with humans.  Yes, they definitely take the militaristic aspect of things a bit too far, but that’s part of the charm of this film’s premise. The cast and the voice cast are both great and the use of members of The Dirty Dozen to play the voices of these soldiers was a great idea. Great seeing Hartman in one of his final roles which once gain helped emphasize how great an artist and comedian he was.  Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Joe Dante originally wanted the cast of Predator (1987) to voice the Commando Elite. Arnold Schwarzenegger would voice Chip Hazard, Shane Black would voice Kip Killagin, Carl Weathers would voice Butch Meathook, Jesse Ventura would voice Brick Bazooka, Sonny Landham would voice Nick Nitro, and Bill Duke would voice Link Static. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (7/10)

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2 thoughts on “Small Soldiers (1998)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1998 | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: The Large Association of Movie Blogs | Director’s Chair: Joe Dante

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