The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas
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The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (also known as The Flintstones 2 or The Flintstones 2: Viva Rock Vegas in the working title) is a 2000 American romantic comedy film directed by Brian Levant, written by Jim Cash, Harry Elfont, Deborah Kaplan, and Jack Epps, Jr., and is the prequel to Levant's The Flintstones (1994), based on the 1960–66 animated television series of the same name. It is set before the events of both the series and the first film, showing how Fred and Barney met Wilma and Betty.
|The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Brian Levant|
|Produced by||Bruce Cohen|
|Based on||The Flintstones|
by William Hanna
|Music by||David Newman|
|Edited by||Kent Beyda|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$59.5 million|
None of the original cast from the first film reprise their roles here. The film stars Mark Addy, replacing John Goodman as Fred Flintstone; Stephen Baldwin replacing Rick Moranis as Barney Rubble; Kristen Johnston replacing Elizabeth Perkins as Wilma Slaghoople; and Jane Krakowski replacing Rosie O'Donnell as Betty O'Shale. The supporting cast featured Joan Collins, Thomas Gibson, Harvey Korman (In his final film performance), and Alan Cumming in a dual role as The Great Gazoo and Mick Jagged, a parody of Mick Jagger.
The film was a box office bomb, grossing only $59.5 million against its $83 million budget. Like its predecessor, Viva Rock Vegas also received negative reviews, though some critics considered it an improvement over the first film.
Young bachelors and best friends Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble have recently qualified as crane operators at Slate & Company. Soon to be employed, now they want dates, and a little green alien The Great Gazoo, exiled to Earth by his species, offers to help, although only they can see him. Meanwhile, Wilma Slaghoople wants a normal life and activities, like bowling, despite her controlling mother Pearl, who wants her to marry smooth casino-owner Chip Rockefeller. Wilma angrily runs away to Bronto King in Bedrock. Waitress Betty O'Shale mistakes her as "caveless", and offers to share her apartment, and gets her a job.
Fred and Barney are smitten with the waitresses and invite them to a carnival, with Fred dating Betty and Barney taking Wilma. However, the couples do not really feel a connection until both men switch dates. Fred wins a carnival game and gets a prize of an egg which hatches into a baby dinosaur, which he names "Dino". Wilma invites her new friends home to a birthday party for her father, Colonel Slaghoople, where all are shocked by her wealth. Fred intends to propose but changes his mind after meeting Chip, who berates him for his low-level job at Slate & Company. Pearl dislikes the three new friends, but the Colonel, glad Wilma is happy, accepts them and privately gives Wilma a valuable pearl necklace that once belonged to his great-grandmother. After the boys disgrace themselves at dinner, Wilma nevertheless proclaims her pride and follows them out.
Chip congratulates Fred on attracting Wilma and apologizes for his humiliation of Fred's job. He invites the four to his Rock Vegas resort as a peace offering. However, this is a plot by Chip to hope Fred gambles so Wilma dumps him, whereas Fred sees it as a chance to win big so he can impress Wilma with money like Chip's. Chip and his girlfriend Roxie are visited by two gangsters named Big Rocko and Little Rocko to collect a lot of money owed by Chip, who claims his upcoming marriage to Wilma will get him access to the Slaghoople fortune, and the gangsters consider that plan creditable, so they agree to suspend collections until after the wedding. Gazoo witnesses the entire conversation. When Barney tries to keep Fred from high-stakes poker, Chip sends Roxie to seduce Barney for an escort to an all-you-can-eat buffet.
Chip keeps Fred gambling to miss his dinner date with the others. Betty sees Barney wipe cream from Roxie's chest and misinterprets the move as a pass. Mick Jagged comforts the weeping girl, and they go on a date. Wilma breaks up with Fred over not spending any time with her. Chip warns her of burglaries and arranges that Fred loses everything before slipping Wilma's pearls in Fred's pocket and asking him to empty them. Hotel security arrests Fred for robbery. When Barney protests that Fred would do no such thing, and that Fred would not even be able to crack his own knuckles without help, Chip accuses Barney of being Fred's accomplice and has him arrested, as well. Angered that the two of them stole from her, Wilma goes back to Chip.
In prison, the men are visited by Gazoo, who earlier spied on Chip. Gazoo reveals that Chip is in severe debt to the mob, and hoped to solve both his problems by framing Fred for the robbery and plans to marry Wilma to get the Slaghooples' money. Barney slips through the bars, steals the keys, and unlocks the cell. Disguised as dancers, they accidentally run into Jagged's dressing room. Barney tells Betty he loves her, and they get back together after the misunderstanding involving Roxie at the buffet is cleared up, and Barney knocks out Jagged.
Fred plans to disguise himself as Jagged in an attempt to reconcile with Wilma. Meanwhile, in the audience, Chip proposes to Wilma, but she is unresponsive. Fred then comes on stage disguised as Jagged and briefly sings to Wilma. He apologizes for his behavior earlier before proposing to her. Knowing that she still loves Fred, Wilma happily accepts, rejecting Chip, and they marry in the Rock Vegas Chapel of Love, while the gangsters prepare to make Chip pay in their own manner. After the pastor proclaims them husband and wife, everyone sings "Meet the Flintstones". When Jagged sings "Viva Rock Vegas" at a party, Betty catches Wilma's tossed bouquet and kisses Barney. The newlyweds drive away with Dino and Gazoo to goodbye waves from their friends, family, and even a handcuffed Chip and Roxie.
- Mark Addy as Fred Flintstone
- Stephen Baldwin as Barney Rubble
- Kristen Johnston as Wilma Slaghoople
- Jane Krakowski as Betty O'Shale
- Joan Collins as Pearl Slaghoople
- Thomas Gibson as Chip Rockefeller
- Alan Cumming as The Great Gazoo / Mick Jagged
- Harvey Korman as Colonel Slaghoople; Korman previously voiced the Great Gazoo in the original television series and the Dictabird in the first film
- Alex Meneses as Roxie
- Tony Longo as Big Rocko
- Danny Woodburn as Little Rocko
- John Taylor as Keith Rockhard
- Irwin Keyes as Joe Rockhead; Keyes reprises his role from the first film
- Taylor Negron as Gazaam / Gazing
- Mel Blanc (archive footage, voice) as Puppy Dino; Blanc previously voiced Barney, Dino and numerous characters in the original series
- William Hanna (special appearance) as himself
- Joseph Barbera (special appearance) as himself
- John Stephenson as the Minister who marries Fred and Wilma / Showroom Announcer; Stephenson previously voiced a number of guest characters in the original series, most notably Mr. Slate and Count Rockula
- Rosie O'Donnell as the voice of the Octopus giving Wilma and Betty massages; O'Donnell previously portrayed Betty in the first film
- John Cho as Parking valet
- Kristen Stewart as Ring Toss Girl
- Jim Doughan as Dinosaur Confessor; Doughan previously portrayed a waiter in the first film
Korman, who played Wilma's father Colonel Slaghoople, was the voice of The Great Gazoo in the animated series and he was also the voice of the Dictabird in the first film. Stephenson, who played both the Showroom announcer and the Minister, provided the voice of Mr. Slate from the animated series. Krakowski had been reluctant to play Betty, feeling she would be overshadowing O'Donnell, until she was congratulated by Rosie for getting the role with flowers and a card that said "From Betty #1 to Betty #2, Now Yabba Dabba Do It!"
Ann-Margret, who guest-starred as "Ann-Margrock" in the cartoon show's season four episode "Ann-Margrock Presents", sings the theme song, which is a slightly rewritten version of the song from Viva Las Vegas.
The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas opened theatrically on April 28, 2000 and earned $10,518,435 in its first weekend, ranking second to U-571's second weekend. The film ended its run on August 17, 2000, having grossed $38,268,275 domestically and $24,200,000 overseas for a worldwide total of $59,468,275. Based on an $83 million budget, the film was a box office bomb. This was an extreme disappointment compared to the first film's $358.5 million worldwide gross.
Like the first installment, Viva Rock Vegas received generally negative reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, it has a 25% score, based on 72 reviews, with an average rating of 4/10. The site's consensus states: "The prequel to the first full-length feature set in Bedrock, Viva Rock Vegas is a surprising improvement over The Flintstones. Aimed towards an audience of adults and children alike, critics feel Viva will appeal to a broad range of viewers". Metacritic reports a 27 out of 100 rating, based on 26 reviews, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews."
The film was nominated for four Razzies at the 21st Golden Raspberry Awards:
- Worst Picture
- Worst Supporting Actor (Stephen Baldwin)
- Worst Supporting Actress (Joan Collins)
- Worst Remake or Sequel
At the 2000 Stinkers Bad Movie Awards, it received seven total nominations with only one win: Worst Resurrection of a TV Show. Its other nominations were for:
- Worst Supporting Actor (Stephen Baldwin)
- Worst Song ("Viva Rock Vegas" by Ann-Margret)
- Worst On-Screen Hairstyle (Stephen Baldwin)
- Worst Remake or Sequel
- The Remake or Sequel Nobody Was Clamoring For
- Most Unfunny Comic Relief (Alan Cumming as The Great Gazoo and Mick Jagged)
- "THE FLINTSTONES IN VIVA ROCK VEGAS (PG)". British Board of Film Classification. May 18, 2000. Retrieved April 10, 2016.
- "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (2000)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. August 18, 2000. Retrieved April 10, 2016.
- "Weekend Box Office Results for April 28-30, 2000". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. May 1, 2000. Retrieved April 10, 2016.
- "'U-571' Runs Noisy, Runs Strong". The Los Angeles Times. May 2, 2000. Retrieved November 10, 2010.
- "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. April 28, 2000. Retrieved January 29, 2016.
- "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved January 29, 2016.