I admit it. I watch the Rugrats. Unlike most of you, I have a very good excuse since I have kids. Two in fact, one boy and one girl and they are the perfect age for this film. I even know all the characters like Chucky, Tommy and his brother Dill Pickles, the twins Phil and Lil and the little brat Angelica. What makes the “Rugrats” so successful is that it actually works on two drastically different levels appealing both to single-digit aged kids who giggle at “poopie” humor while pleasing adults who understand jokes about parenting and diapers. The story for this second Rugrats movie outing involves little red-headed Chucky’s desire for a mother. Chucky’s dad Mr. Finster lost mommy to, uh, disease, er, well, it’s never made clear but she’s dead and “in heaven.” When Stu Pickles Reptar robot goes berserk in Reptar Land France (an obvious poke at Disney Land) he’s invited to France to fix the colossal contraption. There the evil head of the French amusement park is Coco LaBouche who makes a play for Chucky’s dad to impress her bosses in Japan in the interests of gaining a promotion. This leads to a series of madcap adventures in Reptar Land France with the li’l Rugrats engaged in a race against time to stop Coco in her bid for power.
What I enjoyed most about Rugrats II is that the filmmakers are completely aware they must work just as hard to entertain the parents as the diaper set. My kids certainly did not pick up on the opening scene’s homage to Godfather with Angelica doling out favors ala Don Corleone. Angelica even leaves a toy pony’s head cut off in the crib of the kids. Gotta love Angelica.
The worst thing a film for children can do is only please the kids. The adults must be satisfied too, and Rugrats will leave both demographics more than satisfied – they’ll poop their pants with joy!