Small Soldiers

D: Joe Dante
Dreamworks/Universal/Amblin (Mike Finnell & Colin Wilson)
US 1998
110 mins

Adventure/Comedy/Science Fiction

W: Gavin Scott, Adam Rifkin, Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio
DP: Jamie Anderson
Ed: Marshall Harvey & Michael Thau
Mus: Jerry Goldsmith

Kirsten Dunst (Christy Fimple), Gregory Smith (Alan Abernathy), Phil Hartman (Phil Fimple), Kevin Dunn (Stuart Abernathy), Denis Leary (Gil Mars), Jay Mohr (Larry Benson)
voices of: Tommy Lee Jones (Chip Hazard), Frank Langella (Archer), Ernest Borgnine (Kip Killigan), George Kennedy (Brick Bazooka), Bruce Dern (Link), Christopher Guest (Slamfist), Michael McKean (Insaniac)

Toy soldiers, inadvertently fitted with experimental munitions chips used by the American military, run amok in a small town neighbourhood, programmed to destroy another brand of toys called The Gorgonites, fitted out with similar technology.
Director Joe Dante, reuniting with executive producer Steven Spielberg, uses the same B-movie style he employed in Gremlins (qv), but the plot of the film merely makes this feel like a lower quality knockoff of the 1980's classic. There's some good moments, starting with some black comedy which it doesn't stick with, as well as some very good visual effects, but ultimately this is rather disappointing. A shame, since this could have been a much better film.
This marked the last screen appearance of actor Phil Hartman (also a regular on TV's The Simpsons) before his death by murder in May 1998.

Small Soldiers
Small Soldiers