As a kid, I was a pretty huge fan of Gumby. Even though the episodes I was watching were like 40-year old re-runs. But one day, the re-runs stopped and I never really saw the show again. But I recently came across Gumby: The Movie, which actually came out in 1995. I can’t remember if I saw this movie or not as a kid, but it seems all-new to me.
I actually forgot about a good deal of the show. Like Gumby being able to jump into books to enter a whole new world of people and culture. But the movie is primarily set in a farm-town book, and centers around the success of Gumby’s new music band.
But one day, the Blockheads are watching the band perform in the park, and notice that Gumby’s dog cries out tears that form into pearls. So they kidnap the pup, and replace him with a robotic clone. They slowly do the same to the rest of Gumby’s group in order to make the dog (who only cries when Gumby’s band is performing) weep so they can get wealthy off the infinite pearl making abilities of his tears.
After I watched the film, I read some of the critical reviews from 1995 and was awfully surprised that most of them shrugged it off. It was released at a time of Toy Story and Nightmare Before Christmas, so I guess the 1950’s clay animation and humor wasn’t exactly exciting or cutting-edge for them. But as a grown-up fan, I really enjoyed the film. It’s just as charming as the classic show, with a few parodies based on films released long after the original series’ run.