Movies — Superbabies: Baby Geniuses (PG)

Toddlers take their revenge for diaper rash, strained peas and Barney by inflicting the world with Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2, a movie that paralyzes you with its awfulness and then stabs you repeatedly with cloying baby-related humor.

Apparently, back in 1999, back when national politics made entertainment unnecessary, someone made Baby Geniuses the first. Now, much like the creature in some low-budget slasher movie, that horror, which we thought had been safely contained in the last millennium, has spilled over into our time.


The week-old meatloaf around which the flies of this plot swirl is the legend of a “superbaby” named Kahuna (Gerry, Leo and/or Miles Fitzgerald) —nevermind that this “baby”  looks to be a 9-year-old with some sort of gland problem. He has been saving and protecting the children of the world since, well I don’t know because my mind wandered a bit during one of the endless exposition flashbacks, but since sometime when people drove 1960s-era cars. His arch-nemesis was an evil East German officer named Kane (Jon “What the hell are you doing to yourself?” Voight), a man so cruel that he sought to rule the world by controlling a group of East German orphans. (Rather a questionable way to go about world domination, but whatever.) Kahuna and Kane fought at every turn, or rather they “fought” because mostly they’d banter and Kahuna would use some gadget or be-nippled bottle of super juice to shrug his way out of trouble. And Kane, evil incarnate though he was, never thought to just shoot his pint-sized enemy.

(Oh, what? Just in the leg. Just a little bit. And anyway, what kind of kid walks and talks and can construct elaborate escapes but still drinks from a bottle? Sounds like this spy kid needs a few hundred hours of therapy to discuss that unresolved Oedipal complex.)

Was such a little baby-savior ever real?

The plot whisks us into the present day where four amazingly uncute toddlers talk to each other thanks to voice overs and computer-animated mouths about this Kahuna. Maybe he can help them now, they think. After all, these babies are about to be the target of an evil plot by a surprisingly familiar media mogul named Biscane who seeks to control the world by sending subliminal messages to the babies’ brains via the TV. (Telling them, what, who to vote for? Buy American? Drink more Ovaltine?)

So the babies decide to save the world. Scott Baio costars.

Seriously. Baio. He plays the money-hungry but ultimately decent owner of the four diaperteers’ daycare center and father of one of those key babies.

Dude, don’t you have any money left from Charles in Charge?

Superbabies is an hour and a half of torture that feels like an eternity. The only reason I can see for such a monstrosity is as a secret ad for birth control. I’d ask if anyone noticed any subliminal ads for the pill or a few product placements for the patch but who would I ask? Who would voluntarily view this jumbled, boring, stuck-together-with-chewing-gum mess of a movie?

Did I mention that the babies aren’t even cute?

- Amy Diaz

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