My Favorite Martian [1999]

Tired but watchable adaptation of the popular '60s TV show of a friendly Martian who lives with an agreeable earthling. Like Disney's other live-action remakes 101 Dalmatians and Flubber, the emphasis is on quick-moving scenes and special effects--not character. Jeff Daniels is the bemused earthling who gets to know Christopher Lloyd's alien ways. Much of the film feels like a retread borrowing heavily from other sci-fi comedies (and "fish out of water" films), including Lloyd's own Back to the Future. Lloyd and his talking space suit (voiced by Wayne Knight who brings the same personality as his Newman role on Seinfeld) don't know simple Earth customs but inexplicably know every pop culture reference in the last 10 years. Daryl Hannah and Elizabeth Hurley are along for the ride as Daniels's good-girl and bad-girl flames. TV's Martian, Ray Waltson, shows up as a secret agent alien hunter--and pours more emotion into his scenes than the rest of the movie combined. Ages 6 and up. --Doug Thomas

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