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Film / Mr. Magoo

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Mr. Magoo is Disney's 1997 Live-Action Adaptation of the Mr. Magoo cartoon, starring Leslie Nielsen as Quincy Magoo.

Magoo is drawn into a jewel heist plot after two bumbling thieves accidentally lose their stolen prize in a mix-up. Meanwhile, two agents try to retrieve the diamond.

This film provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Dumbass: In the original cartoons, Magoo was stubborn and tended to stumble into bad situations without thinking but could also be quite resourceful when in a tight spot. Here, he's just plain stupid. Take the scene where Magoo is trapped in the sarcophagus with a mummy: even as near-sighted as Magoo is, there's no way he could have mistaken a dried-out corpse for a living person at such close proximity and then carried on a conversation with it for several hours unless he wasn't in his rational mind to begin with.
  • Amplified Animal Aptitude: Mr. Magoo's dog, Angus, is smart enough to assist Mr. Magoo in his day-to-day life, setting out clothes for him in the morning, removing any stray obstacles that may get in Mr. Magoo's way, and can even get himself dressed.
  • Animated Credits Opening: The film, naturally enough, uses the animated character for its opening credits in a sequence meant to invoke the original cartoons establishing Mr. Magoo's main gimmick, as he walks out an open window believing it to be an elevator, and drives onto a train track believing it to be a road.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Interruption: Happens while the title character is trying to cook a chicken via TV instructions, but thanks to a channel change winds up following an aerobics instructor instead.
    • And then again when he drops the chicken on the remote and switches to a show about carpentry. In the next scene Magoo is going to get sandpaper in order to, as the TV show instructs, "sand that sucker down".
  • Auction of Evil: One of the jewel thieves places the Star of Kuristan up to auction after it is stolen. Mr. Magoo attempts to infiltrate the auction in order to take the jewel for himself and clear his name.
  • Blind Driving: Mr Magoo is somehow still permitted to drive despite his near-sightedness, creating quite a bit of chaos anytime he gets behind the wheel. Waldo, to his credit, tries to remedy the situation by replacing his windshield with magnifying glass. Unfortunately, this leads to the thief, Bob Morgan, to drive blind when he steals Mr. Magoo's car to make a getaway.
  • Blind Mistake: Just like in the original cartoon, Mr. Magoo will often mistake things for another due to his near-sightedness.
  • Book Ends: The film begins and ends with an animated sequence of Mr. Magoo resembling the original cartoons.
  • The Capital of Brazil Is Buenos Aires: Quincy Magoo faces off against a monkey in the middle of a high-class party at Rio de Janeiro. He also glides from there to the Iguazu Falls, a Brazilian-Argentinian landmark that's in the Brazilian border in the other side of the country.
  • Clear My Name: Mr. Magoo is falsely accused by the FBI and the CIA of stealing the Star of Kuristan when he is caught on security cameras leaving the museum as the jewel is being taken. Once he learns that he's being accused, he decides to go after the jewel himself in order to clear his name.
  • Construction Zone Calamity: In the opening animated sequence, Mr. Magoo ends up walking across a girder as it's being lifted by a construction crew doing work outside his office building.
  • The Dinnermobile: Mr. Magoo owns an Eggplant-mobile, which is, of course, a vehicle shaped like an eggplant.
  • Disguised in Drag: At one point, Mr. Magoo disguises himself as a bride and manages to make it all the way to the altar before exposing himself.
  • Expy: Angus the bulldog is one for McBarker from “What’s New, Mr. Magoo”.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: Quincy's dog Angus recognizes Luanne through her disguise as Prunella Pagliacci from earlier when she stole the gem. He recognizes her again when she's disguised as an elderly woman.
  • Faint in Shock: Ortega's bride-to-be, Rosita, faints dead away when she sees Magoo sneaking around covered in bubble foam.
  • Femme Fatale: Luanne LeSeur is a jewel thief who is known for seducing and killing her male accomplices. She attempts to seduce Mr. Magoo in order to get the Star of Kuristan from him.
  • Groin Attack: As Luanne and Bob Morgan hold on to a ship's door, trying not to fall into water, Magoo casts his fishing rod and the hook catches onto Morgan's poor balls. Magoo, convinced he caught a big fish, keeps pulling the rod. Morgan moans in pain, lets go of Luanne's leg and falls into water, while Luanne carelessly gets back on the ship.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: The credits include several bloopers that didn't make it into the film.
  • Implausible Boarding Skills: There's a scene where a chase down a mountain combines with a ski event. The good guys and the bad are on skis and snowmobiles and Mr. Magoo is ironing board. He rides it like a scooter and wins the competition.
  • Improvised Parachute: Mr. Magoo converts his raft into a glider after going over a waterfall and slowly descends to the ground safely.
  • Inevitable Waterfall: After Mr. Magoo and Luanne LeSeur fall into a river from a helicopter, they are dropped a raft from a rescue copter. After they get into a raft, they are informed that they are approaching a waterfall and need to be lifted out.
  • The Klutz: Bob Morgan, the jewel thief, is incredibly accident prone, even without Mr. Magoo's interference.
  • Line-of-Sight Alias: In a much more sensible variation of the trope, Luanne comes up with the name Prunella when she sees the name in his dressing room, realizing that the name belongs to somebody near and dear to Mr. Magoo's heart.
  • Masquerading As the Unseen: Magoo infiltrates a criminal auction for a stolen gem by impersonating Ortega Peru, the rarely-seen "king of the underworld". One other person at the auction has already met Peru (and Magoo for that matter), but she doesn't expose the ruse.
  • Mineral MacGuffin: The Star of Kuristan, the priceless ruby that gets stolen from the museum which kick starts the plot.
  • No Honor Among Thieves: The jewel thieves that steal the Star of Kuristan end up losing the jewel when one tries to steal it from the other on a boat, causing it to end up falling onto Mr. Magoo's boat. Later, one of the thieves sells the jewel to a wealthy crime lord, who attempts to have her murdered for her trouble.
  • Our Lawyers Advised This Trope: The film features a disclaimer saying that it was "not intended as an accurate portrayal of blindness or poor eyesight." To which Roger Ebert said: "I think we should stage an international search to find one single person who thinks the film is intended as such a portrayal, and introduce that person to the author of the disclaimer, as they will have a lot in common, including complete detachment from reality." Ironically, the disclaimer (as it appears on screen) is very small and thus difficult to read.
    • Said disclaimer didn't help much in the end: the film was pulled after two weeks due to backlash from blindness advocate groups, before the film could recoup the remaining $9 million from its $30 million budget.
  • Photo Doodle Recognition: Mr. Magoo infiltrates an auction for criminals by disguising himself with black hair and a moustache. He is discovered when Austin Cloquet sees a photo of Mr. Magoo in a newspaper and draws in black hair and a moustache on his photo.
  • The Show Must Go Wrong: The opera Mr. Magoo is a part of ends up going terribly wrong due to Mr. Magoo's near-sightedness and a jewel thief trying to murder him. Mr. Magoo ends up knocking the thief out on a wind machine which causes it to blow wildly onto the set during the performance.
  • Take a Third Option: Waldo can neither convince Magoo to get some glasses nor just let him drive around without having them, so he replaces the windshield on Magoo's car with a magnifying glass.
    Waldo: If you can't take Muhammad to the Mountain...
  • Tattooed Crook: The art thief/seller Austin Cloquet is entertaining criminals from all over the world at his mansion. As they disrobe to go into a pool, the crooks start comparing tattoos. Then they take a look at the Yakuza whose entire body is completely covered in elaborate tattoos.
    American Crook: Not bad. What do they mean?
    Yakuza: Every time I kill a man... I tattoo his portrait on my body.
    Russian Crook: What do you do when you run out of room? Stop killing people? [laughs]
  • Whatever Happened to the Mouse?: Nick Chinlund's character Bob Morgan is not seen again after chasing Mr. Magoo through the snow, suggesting he froze to death.
    • Or, at the very least, arrested.
  • Was It All a Lie?: Mr. Magoo, who had been falling in love with one of the jewel thieves posing as a reporter in order to get close to the jewel after finding out that she isn't who she says she is.
  • Who's on First?: The bad guy is a Brazilian drug lord by the name of Ortega Peru. This leads to a sequence in which Waldo becomes very confused when Mr. Magoo tries to explain that Peru is in Brazil.
  • Worthless Yellow Rocks: Mr. Magoo on a couple of occasions when given the Star of Kuristan by Angus doesn't recognize it for what it is and assumes it to just be a worthless stone or toy that he assumes Agnes wants to play fetch with and just tosses it out a window.