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Addams Family Values

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The Addams Family (1991) | Films & Specials | Addams Family Reunion

Addams Family Values
Starring Raul Julia
Anjelica Huston
Directed By Barry Sonnenfeld
Written By Paul Rudnick
Release Date November 29, 1993


The film opens with Morticia Addams calmly giving birth to a baby boy, Pubert. Wednesday and Pugsley are jealous of their little brother and make numerous attempt to kill the baby. When Gomez and Morticia try to hire a nanny, the children frighten them all away. The last applicant, Debbie Jellinsky, seems to be made of sterner stuff. Unbeknownst to the Addams, she is also the serial killer known as "The Black Widow". On television's America's Most Disgusting Unsolved Crimes, it is revealed that Debbie has been traveling in disguise for quite some time, marrying rich men and killing them for their fortunes. Now she has set her sights on Uncle Fester and the vast Addams fortune. When Wednesday becomes suspicious of Debbie's interest in Uncle Fester's money, Debbie advises Gomez and Morticia to put Wednesday and Pugsley on probation and send them to Camp Chippewa. The parents are horrified at the thought, but are talked into it.

With the kids out of the way, Debbie marries Uncle Fester, then promptly tries to kill him on their Hawaiian honeymoon by electrocuting him in the jacuzzi; however, Uncle Fester is an Addams, and he can't be killed. Plus he also mistakes her murderous actions for ordinary affection. At her wits' end, Debbie denies him sex until he promises never to see his family again; in anguish, he agrees. The couple then move into a garish McMansion in the suburbs.

With Uncle Fester gone, Gomez goes into a depression and Pubert becomes "possessed", turning blonde, rosy and cheerful. Meanwhile, at Camp Chippewa, Wednesday and Pugsley do not fit in with the rest of the wealthy, mean-spirited campers. During lifesaving training, Wednesday intentionally lets her partner, Amanda Buckman, almost drown in the lake. At night, during the telling of ghost stories, Wednesday tells of a ghost undoing all of the campers' nose jobs overnight, which causes her fellow campers to scream in terror while she looks on, smirking with satisfaction. The Addams children try to escape at night when they receive word of Uncle Fester's marriage to Debbie, but are caught. Amanda and the rest of the campers suggest that the Addams kids be punished, but the camp counselors Gary and Becky, would prefer to inspire them by singing Kumbaya, which makes Wednesday and Pugsley cringe. Meanwhile, Wednesday encounters a soul mate (of sorts) in the person of Joel Glicker, an introverted boy plagued by allergies. He confirms her suspicions that Debbie is the "Black Widow" and Fester is her next target.

At the end of the summer, the campers stage a play about "The First Thanksgiving" with the "good" kids cast as the pilgrims and the social outcasts as Chippewa natives, with Wednesday as Pocahontas. When Wednesday, Pugsley and Joel refuse to participate in the play, all three are locked in the "Harmony Hut" and forced to watch movies and TV shows ranging from Bambi to Lassie Come Home, The Little Mermaid, The Sound of Music, The Brady Bunch and Annie. When the three come out, they pretend that they have changed from gloomy to cheerful (Wednesday even going so far as to smile). During the performance, however, Wednesday breaks out of character and makes a speech about how the American colonists will later exploit the Native Americans in the future and leads the other outcasts in revolt, destroying the set and tying Amanda up to be burned at the stake. Wednesday and Joel flee to the Chippewa fence as Pugsley steals a camp van. After hopping the fence, Wednesday asks Joel to come with them. He declines, saying he needs to go back to the others and "to watch the place burn". Realizing they may never see each other, the two young lovers exchange (relatively) emotional goodbyes and share a kiss through the chain-link fence. Afterward, the Addams siblings flee for home.

Meanwhile, Debbie has come up with a new plan to kill Uncle Fester. For their "three week anniversary", she wraps up a time bomb in a gift box and tells Uncle Fester not to open it until she comes back with some champagne. However, the bomb only succeeds in blowing up the house. When a frustrated Debbie snarls, "I want you dead, and I want your money!", Uncle Fester realizes the truth and flees with Thing's help to the Addams mansion, with Debbie in hot pursuit.

An ailing Gomez tells Uncle Fester that he is "Mr. Debbie!" but Fester declares, "I AM AN ADDAMS!" Gomez is instantly cured hearing this, and the baby reverts back to his dark, gloomy self. Pugsley and Wednesday return as well.

Then, an angry Debbie bursts into the room with one intent: kill all the Addams and take the money. She straps everyone (except Pubert) to electric chairs and uses slides to tell how she came to be. She killed her parents as a child on her tenth birthday because they did not buy her the Barbie doll she wanted (a Ballerina Barbie). She killed her first husband, a heart surgeon, with an axe (reminding Grandmama of her days) because he was too busy to dine with her (because of the Pope having a cold), and ran over her second husband, a senator, with her car because he would not buy her a new Mercedes-Benz (as they had "to set an example"). Uncle Fester begs Debbie to just kill him and let his family go, but she rejects his offer. Pubert short-circuits the wiring, causing Debbie to electrocute herself.

In the epilogue, Gomez and Morticia throw a birthday party for Pubert. Joel, dressed like Gomez, sneaks off to the graveyard with Wednesday, where they talk briefly about Debbie. Remarking that Debbie's methods were "sloppy," Wednesday says that if she wanted to kill a man and not be caught, she would scare him to death. As Joel lays flowers on Debbie's grave, an unidentified hand breaks the surface and grabs his arm; Wednesday looks on, smiling, satisfied with Joel's screams.



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