Huckleberry Finn's age has been scaled down in this 1993 Disney film in order to accommodate star Elijah Wood's young years at the time. But that's not the only concession Mark Twain's great American novel must make to Disney revisionism. Wood's Huck, as adapted for the screen by writer-director Stephen Sommers, is all rascal and only nominally a philosopher, which takes a lot of the soul out of Twain's extraordinary story about Huck's enlightenment while traveling with the slave Jim (Courtney B. Vance) along the Mississippi river. Big chunks of the journey are also minimized in significance, and not just for the sake of storytelling economy. Jason Robards Jr. and Robbie Coltrane brighten things up, but overall this is an unnecessarily simplified version of an important story. --Tom Keogh
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