"Richie Rich is the world's poor little rich boy. He's the richest kid on Earth, but all he really wants are friends (well, he's got everything else). He spends his days living by a meticulous schedule that sometimes even includes filling in for his father at public appearances. His wealthy schoolmates are just as busy as he is and not quite as desperate to do "regular kid things" as Richie. While filling in for his father at a public event, however, Richie takes notice of some inner-city, street-wise kids playing baseball in a vacant lot nearby and makes an attempt to join in. They soon make it clear that he does not belong, and poor Richie goes home in despair. Seeing his disappointment, Richie's protective and caring butler, Cadbury, makes arrangements for the kids to come to the Rich family mansion and spend a day with the boy, much to Richie's joy and surprise! The gang of kids have a ball riding Richie's rollercoaster, trying out his kid-a-pult, and eating in his own, personal McDonald's. At the end of the day, Richie's new friends have accepted him as being just another regular kid, though they more than appreciate the benefits that come with his friendship. Still, feisty redhead Gloria, self-appointed leader of the bunch, makes it clear that they like Richie more for who he is than for all the neat stuff he has. Richie doesn't have much time to be happy about that, though. Word soon arrives that Richie's parents, benign but sometimes clueless Richard and Regina Rich, were victims of an assassination attempt and are now lost at sea and assumed dead. As the Riches survive in a life raft on Perrier and champagne, Richie is forced to take over the family company and keep it safe from malicious top executive Lawrence Van Dough, who planned the attack on Richie's parents in the first place. Luckily, with his new friends' help, Richie turns out to be a business whiz! Richie has to become even more assertive when Cadburry is framed and locked up for the murder of Richie's parents though. Some help from in-house inventor Professor Keenbean allows Richie to break Cadburry out, but matters become even more complicated when the Rich parents finally are rescued by the villainous Van Dough and his cronies themselves, purely so they can open the voice-activated lock on the family vault in Mt. Richmore. Now, Richie and his crew must prove their mettle and save Richie's parents and fortune from a criminal desperate to do anything to have it all!
After the wonderful holiday films "Home Alone" and "Home Alone 2" turned child-actor Macaulay Culkin into an instant superstar, he sadly seemed incapable of having another success. 1994's "Richie Rich" was just one example of several films the young actor made after his big Christmas hits that failed to strike a chord with movie going audiences or critics. Sadly, "Richie Rich" is really a great film. While not a perfect adaptation of the comic and cartoon (the villainous Van Dough is an adult exec here rather than a rotten cousin, Gloria is unfortunately a cute but street-sassy tomboy with a last-name change rather than Richie's sweet and femininely dressed girlfriend, and Irona the robot maid/bodyguard is nowhere to be seen until the direct to video "sequel"), the performances, particularly the adult ones, are fantastic, fun, well developed and well fleshed-out considering their cartoon origins, and easily carry the very basic cartoon plot. The humor and emotion is well-written, even if it's an age-old story of the rich kid who just wants friends. And, of course, the sights are the icing on the cake, from the kooky inventions of Professor Keenbean to the glorious Rich Family Estate (actually the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina), not to mention the world's only Dollarmation, Richie's dog, Dollar! The DVD is in widescreen and includes one Bonus Feature, which is the theatrical trailer. Hey, "Richie Rich" isn't rocket science, but it's a feast for the eyes and a fun family fantasy from beginning to end that brings back childhood memories of Saturday morning cartoons and Harvey comics, and with actors like Edward Herrmann, John Larroquette, and Jonathan Hyde in a live-action cartoon, you know you're in for a treat! "
Good Family Fun
Felipe Vega, Jr. | 01/20/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Great movie for the family. Positive message about it not being what you have, but what you have inside you. Also the proverbial good guy wins theme"
Felipe Vega, Jr. | 02/23/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I think this is really a cute movie for families. I like the contrast that is given between the "villain" and Richie's parents. After all, their true treasures WERE in that mountain vault, because they valued their sentimental family memories over material wealth. I believe that is a good message to send to kids, but very few Hollywood films portray that. Richie Rich shows a family who "has everything" with the real emphasis on the relationship between the family members, especially father and son."
O, C'mon! It isn't bad at all!
Felipe Vega, Jr. | 12/31/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'm an adult and did not find this movie "unwatchable." In fact, I've seen it twice. I like the fact that is reasonably clean, too, and promotes good things like the fact that to Richie's parents the sentimental things are of greater value to them than the material things and that to Richie and his faithful valet having friends and treating them right is more important than all their wealth. This is one that I allow my kids to see and enjoy. Tons better than "Babe--Pig in the City" (although the first "Babe" was great!) Richie Rich promotes decent values of wealthy people who are generous with those less fortunate. And besides that, it's definitely cute and "watchable" for many. We must not always dismiss a clean, decent movie because we don't personally like it. We must allow for the various tastes of different people. I personally don't think "Shakespeare In Love" deserved even an Oscar Nomination, yet it won! Obviously we don't all think the same, so some of your friends and mine would enjoy Richie Rich, I'm sure!"
A totally ridiculous movie
Linda | Missouri, USA | 07/17/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Richie Rich is a thoroughly ridiculous movie - ridiculous situations, ridiculous characters, ridiculously large (but very real Biltmore Estate) mansion, and its ridiculously fun too. Like Spiderman, Superman, Batman, and others, the character of Richie Rich is based on a comic book superhero. Richie Rich offers us a different type of superhero in that his super power consists of the ridiculous amount of $$$$$ he has. Richie and his family can do amazing things with their superpower. They can build their own Mount Richmore, build a McDonald's in their basement, have their own rollercoaster, jet all over the world and more. Just as most kids have dreamed of being able to fly like Superman and swing from webs like Spidey, kids and adults alike have dreamt of what it would be like to have Bill Gates' billions. And like Superman, Batman, Spidey, etc., the Rich family uses their superpower to help others.
Another similarity between Richie and other comic book heroes is that just as Superman, Spidey and Batman's superpowers keep them from getting and/or keeping a girl - Richie's superpower keeps him from getting and keeping friends. This movie is about how all that changes. Though Richie's $$$$$ plays an initial role in introducing him to potential friends, it's not what enables him to keep them - Richie is genuinely a nice kid.
Sure its silly and ridiculous but guess what - its supposed to be. For me the less than stellar acting and profuse overacting on the part of some of the actors just adds to the overall ridiculousness. This is a fun family movie - just remember that you're watching a comic book."