“You know, this still isn't the most scientifically inaccurate thing I've ever worked on.”
Osmosis Jones is a 2001 American live-action/animated body cop comedy film with remedial animated scenes directed by Tom Sito and Piet Kroon and sickening live-action scenes directed by the Farrelly Brothers (though the commercials, end credits, and Amazon.com product descriptions outright lie to you and claim the Farrellys were the movie's "main" directors). It centers on Osmosis "Ozzy" Jones, an African-American white blood cell cop who complains that germs are trying to oppress him with viruses and infections, and Drixenol "Drix" Koldreliff, a whitebread cold pill straight outta the FDA who is no match for Ozzy's utter hipness and spleenwise attitude. The two must break down the racial cell walls and prevent seductive virus Thrax from killing their host body — slovenly zookeeper and deadbeat dad Frank DeTorre — within forty-eight hours. Ultimately, Jones is caught in a cardiac triad, and must decide between his best friend Drix, Big Daddy Thrax, and Mayor Shatner's curvaceous secretary Leah.
Osmosis Jones was met with mixed reviews, with critics praising the fun and educational animated portions but criticizing the live-action portions, their degradation of national treasure Bill Murray, and their use of sub-Will Ferrell grossout humor featuring exploding zits. The film was the fourth in a string of financial failures by Warner Bros. Feature Animation, who naively hoped to find success at the
antidote antipode to The Iron Giant, though it certainly wouldn't be their last multi-million-dollar mistake as Warner continued to struggle with long-term illness and creative decisions indicative of degenerative brain damage from late-stage Rabbititis.
Frank DeTorre (Bill Murray) is just your average Rhode Island dad, eating hard-boiled eggs covered in dirt and ape spit straight off the floor of the monkey cage at the zoo he works at, trying his hardest to raise his daughter Shane (Elena Franklin) in-between watching sports on the couch until his legs fall off. His little girl had to grow up fast after her mother's death from easily-preventable illness caused by a diet based entirely in fast food, and is amazingly intelligent for having been weaned on cheeseburgers and receiving none of the allegedly nootropic effects of breast milk recommended by 4 out of 5 family physicians (this movie's medical adviser being Dr. § 5, who graduated both top and bottom of his class at the New England Correspondence School of Medicine after writing his thesis on how cold pills contain liquid nitrogen, viruses are made of lava, and flagellum are dreadlocks).
Inside Frank's body is the titular City of Frank, a bustling metropolis inhabited by billions of microorganisms; presumably the peace in the Middle Ear we see briefly advertised later became the War on Acute Otitis Media, but that's another story for the sequel that no one wants to see. We are introduced to Osmosis "Ozzy" Jones (Chris Rock), an African-American white blood cell heartbeat cop running immunity, stationed in the mouth and on the lookout for germs and viruses. He goes in homeostasis-optimal body temperature pursuit of suspects, in a lengthy chase that takes him all the way down to Frank's right leg. Unfortunately the hot-blooded cop fires at his target with his globular orange gat but misses, blowing out a power station and giving Frank a nerve cramp. The police chief (Dennis Franz) is pissed, ready to bust Ozzy back down to the ass crack he came from or make him scab security. Meanwhile, an unsuspecting cattle prod-equipped cleanup crew in the mouth picks up the filthy egg that Frank had previously eaten. Deadly virus Thrax (Laurence Fishburne) emerges from the muck and slashes his way through the workers, spilling their cytoplasm as their boat circles down into Frank's throat.
Shane is about to call the doctor as Frank self-medicates with some delicious KFC. Meanwhile in city hall, Mayor Phlegmming (William Shatner) is busy pretending to care about his constituents as he faces a reelection campaign against the infinitely more charismatic empty suit Tom Colonic (Ron Howard). Afraid that Frank's daughter is going to have him go to the hospital and cause a bodywide panic by substantiating the rumors of a deadly virus, Phlegmming hits the emergency override and has Frank take a cold pill of Drixenol. Arriving at the stomach port, Ozzy passes through a full-body X-ray scanner, a rather novel idea for mid-2001, running into the Mayor's secretary Leah (Brandy Norwood), who has cytoplasm in all the right places. After the brain cell jogs his memory why he's an incel cell, there's a gust of cherry flavor as Ozzy meets his new partner Drixenol "Drix" Koldreliff (David Hyde Pierce), a Metroshka doll-like cell-sized pill who emerges from within a bigger pill. The CGI out-of-towner sticks out like a sore thumb riding shotgun down the crowded capillaries of Frank's animated anthropomorphic anatomy, out of his Ivy League petri dish element.
Together they pursue Ozzy's wild goose chase to investigate the alleged virus who torched Frank's throat, despite no one else believing that this terrorist exists; remember kids, this was back when "9-11" meant you put an unnecessary hyphen in "911" for some reason. Drix assists the fire department in treating some inflammation and Ozzy finds a lone surviving witness, a green Spanish-speaking cell (Carlos Alazraqui, in a high-pitched version of his Taco Bell chihuahua voice), from the initial infection that slipped through the dragnet. Jones then proceeds to fan the flames of racial tension as he insults the witness's ethnicity by saying they don't get Telemundo. As it turns out, Drix is a little trigger-happy as he accidentally ices the witness, and Ozzy hits a cryogenically-frozen end in the investigation but not before the witness utters a cryptic clue in Spanish. Down at the zoo, Frank and Uncle Bob (Chris Elliott) attend to the camels while Bob pretends to be smoking a cigar that never actually appears to be lit as it doesn't change length, as they discuss Shane's upcoming school hike and the annual chicken wing festival in Buffalo, New York. Bob notes Frank stinks from his daughter's scientifically plausible enough fear that deodorant allegedly causes cancer.
Meanwhile in a sweat gland sauna, some Italian stereotype germs are discussing business with the Don, as Thrax emerges in a black leather trenchcoat and shades, looking for a crew to pull a heist and deal with this red pill. He makes short work of the Don, reducing him to a puddle that gets sucked down the drain, and assumes leadership of the gang. On the way to investigate a disturbance in the sinuses, Ozzy calls the local library on his cell phone and he learns that Frank is apparently subconsciously fluent in Spanish whenever the plot hinges on it, and that the name of this epizootic virus they're dealing with is La Muerta Roja or "The Red Death". At the nasal dam, Thrax and his cronies rig the pressure valves to release a remarkably blood-free viscous torrent of snot. Meanwhile, Frank snorts up some pollen orbs that cause him to sneeze; Drix is nearly expunged were it not for Ozzy's quick thinking and superfluous James Brown references to "get down". Alarmed by the dam's rumbling, Drix jumps down to its base and uses his liquid nitrogen gun arm in an attempt to seal the cracking cartilage but it bursts, with the flood leading him and Ozzy to their near-deaths. Luckily, the floodphlegm then reverses course as Frank snorts it back up his nose while Bob isn't looking; if only the audience were as lucky. Drix scolds Ozzy, since he didn't witness Thrax and falsely believes Ozzy is the one who broke the dam, then goes to finish drying the runny nose, which as any school nurse knows is what you do when a bag of ice or a bandage just doesn't cut it.
If you thought that maybe at least Asians wouldn't get a racist stereotype, you'd be wrong, as newscasters reporting on Drix's heroics talk about the newly-arrived animal cracker pandas in the stomach. Drix gets a photo op with the Mayor and Ozzy starts to complain that they're wasting time, prompting the Mayor to threaten to have him taken off the case. Drix insists Ozzy remain on however, and later asks Jones why he has such a bad rap with everyone, as they listen to some bad rap driving down the veinway. Ozzy tells him his story about how years ago, shortly after Shane's mom died, he was cruising the digestive tract when he spotted a virus aboard a bad oyster Frank ate. The oyster was part of a science fair project at Shane's school for Zach (Will Dunn), a mentally-challenged boy with a brain the size of a tangerine, and one of the few people dumber than Frank (but with a seemingly larger vocabulary than Frank's). Reacting quickly, Ozzy did what he had to do and hit the emergency puke button; unfortunately this was during Frank's conversation with Shane's teacher Mrs. Boyd (Molly Shannon), and he vomited all over her. Frank got fired from his job at the pea soup factory, Shane was embarrassed, and Ozzy got demoted for using unnecessary force. Uncle Bob got Frank a new job at the zoo, which had a 93% cut in pay, but was apparently still the best option available. Drix is surprised that Ozzy is actually competent at his job, and also that there were no other witnesses to corroborate his story at a crowded gut port — a lesson Ozzy seems to have taken to nucleus, as seen back when he gave Drix spit for disturbing the crime scene and icing their key witness.
Frank brings his daughter to a seafood restaurant, where he lets her know that he has a better idea than going on a school hike: the Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival, which makes Shane sad that her dad won't help her make friends. Leah is watching the surveillance video from the eyeballs and temporarily takes the wheel when the Mayor leaves, having Frank show a modicum of guilt and say he'll try to talk to her teacher. However, he immediately returns to his old self when Leah leaves and stretches his foot with an infected ingrown toenail on the table, which disgusts Shane. Meanwhile, Ozzy and Drix go down south to said ingrown toenail and break up a chicken poxfight run by their Fluish informant Chill (Antonio Fargas), an inoculation that isn't about to snitch until they pull a good cop/bad cop routine and Drix shoves his gun in his mouth. We never actually see any germs get locked up and become part of the immune system, as all the cops in Frank seem to shoot to kill. The informant lets them know the scoop on the new club The Zit that just opened up on the face, thanks to Frank not washing after shoving his face full of fried chicken, and they go to investigate.
Frank goes to speak with Mrs. Boyd despite the restraining order, and at first it appears that she might actually allow him to go on the hike after all. In an alley outside the club, Ozzy uses the animation budget to squash and stretch into a one-eyed germ and go undercover; unfortunately
white people pills aren't nearly as flexible, being computer-animated and inorganic, so Drix wears the frozen suspect on his head as a disguise instead. Inside the club, hip-hop star Kidney Rock (Kid Rock) and his partner (Joe C., his last role before he went to the Great Bawitda in Sky) are rapping about how they like underage ladies and do it "mandatory, not statutory." Drix learns to dance despite having no legs and just hovering there with embolism-causing bubbles, while Ozzy speaks to the barkeep and drinks a big glass of armpit pus, learning of a meeting in the backrooms. Ozzy sneaks into the backdoor meeting, where Thrax reveals his master plan to break into the hypothalamus and trigger a meltdown of Chernobyl proportions, as he shows off to his crew a necklace made of the DNA strands from all his previous victims (even though before he was from a monkey, he apparently killed three humans as well somehow). Ozzy as it turns out, shapeshifting included, is a terrible undercover cop when he gets smacked by an arm-shaped germ, causing him to revert to his normal form and drop his badge onto the table. The Gangrene Gang gangs up on him, forcing Drix to come in guns blazing with a liquid nitrogen grenade, causing Frank's zit to explode onto Mrs. Boyd's lip and ruining any chance of him going on Shane's field trip. Although no body is found in the wreckage, Ozzy and Drix assume Thrax is dead and return to the precincts to celebrate while rapping Eminem's "My Name Is".
However, upon returning to the office, Ozzy and Drix's case is closed by the Mayor, who is upset at them for disregarding orders, destroying one building (gasp!) of public flesh, and popping a pimple without a permit. Ozzy is forced to turn in his badge and gun, while Drix is told by the Mayor he's little more than a placebo, then they clear out their lockers and somberly say goodbye. Shane meanwhile is mad at her dad and tells him she's not going to the chicken wing festival, and that her mom would still be alive if they ate something other than hamburgers and chicken wings every once in a while. Frank hastily attempts to have a touching heart-to-heart with his daughter, telling her that her mom only died "because she got sick" (ignoring what caused her sickness in the first place), but spoils it by eating a peanut mid-conversation. Ozzy needs a pick-me-up too and decides to go see a movie at the dreamplex when he notices a red mist emanating from the movie, indicating that Thrax is still alive and has set his plan in motion, as he wanders through city hall into the brain's movie-projecting center of subconscious emotions. Even Thrax is visibly horrified at Frank's twisted dreams of Uncle Bob marrying Shane and Frank attending Mrs. Boyd's class in his underwear, saying "This cat was sick before I even got here." Frank's body temperature starts to increase, and the body heat is on as he gets drunk with Bob to drown his sorrows and the flu.
Ozzy goes to get Drix before his boat to the bladder departs, telling him that he's known sugar pills that cured cancer just because they believed they could. This is some grade-A bullspit Ozzy made up but it gets Drix out of the dumps, literally and metaphorically, and they head off in Ozzy's car to catch their cold. In the brain, Thrax takes the hottie neuron Leah hostage, with the security guards choosing not to shoot him for some reason, and jumps out a blood brain barrier before carjacking a getaway vehicle. He makes his way to the uvula with his hostage, killing some cops in his fiery path of destruction. Ozzy temporarily loses the trail, thinking the uvula is that little dangly thing in Frank's boxer shorts, until Drix corrects him and states it's the little dangly thing in Frank's throat, and Ozzy does a U-turn in oncoming traffic to follow the voluptuous volcanic villain. While driving with Uncle Bob to Buffalo, Frank begins to pass out and swerves and jerks along the road; the Mayor takes control and attempts to get Frank to tell Bob he's fine, but to no avail as Bob cancels the trip and tells Frank he's going to the hospital. Meanwhile on the schoolbus, Shane tries on false eyelashes for the first time before noticing the paramedics taking her dying dad away, and splits off from her class to attend to him.
In the ER and on the edge of reaching 108 degrees, the City of Frank is burning up like an Oregon summer day with no air conditioning, as Nerve News Network reports the end of the world. Ozzy and Drix arrive at the uvula to rescue Leah as Thrax makes his getaway, using pollen to get Frank to cough and leaping out the mouth with his Dracula cape on his host's dying cough. Ozzy remembers he's a cartoon character in a world with an extremely loose grasp of physics, medicine, or really any science more complicated than a cardboard volcano; after kissing Leah for good luck, he has Drix fire him from his arm cannon in a last-ditch effort to get the DNA strand and provide Frank with immunity, as his body temperature reaches 108 despite being put on ice. Ozzy and Thrax land on Shane's eye as she watches her father die while they have a bullet-time fistfight. Big Daddy Thrax tries to choke Ozzy with his DNA necklace but Jones gets free when Shane closes her eyelid, causing the two to fall down to the false lashbridge as it starts to crumble. Thrax goes to stab Ozzy with his volcano knife finger when Ozzy pulls his own stunt right out of Germinator 2 and goes T-1000, dividing himself (reaffirming what Leah said earlier) and reforming running across the collapsing eyelash. Thrax plummets to his death into an open flask of alcohol, melting like that Nazi who messed with a certain other Jones.
The doctors are about to call it as Shane runs to her father's deathbed crying and taking back all the perfectly reasonable criticisms she made about him, while Ozzy catches a ride on her tear back into Frank's mouth. The DNA is returned to the nuclear hypothalamus plant just in time as Frank opens his eyes and tells Shane that Mom says "Hi". Some upbeat gospel-inspired R&B plays as Ozzy and Drix receive accommodations at city hall, and Ozzy is reinstated into the police force with Drix as his permanent new partner. Later, Frank is on his own father-daughter hike with Shane and has renounced junk food, now climbing a few feet up hills he drove most of the way to and eating a few carrots as a token gesture. Meanwhile, Mayor Phlegmming, having traded places in the colon with his political opponent and now working as a custodian, can't help put press a big red button wondering what it does, and is sucked out of the body in a huge gust of wind. Frank and his daughter look down triumphantly from a mountaintop and share a fartwarming father and daughter moment as Frank uses "Out with the old, in with the new" as a metaphor for his flatulence. Some hoppin' hip-hop tunes inhale us out of the movie and into the credits.
Although the film's animated portions were produced on-schedule, the live-action segments lingered in the third circle of development hell until the Farrelly Brothers, known for their gluttony for chicken wings, stepped in to direct them. Per their deal with Beelzebub, they got top billing over animation directors Tom Sito and Piet Kroon in return for becoming Hellspawn and leading Colonel Sanders's demonic army of headless chickens. Will Smith was originally set to play Ozzy but passed on the chance to be yet another cop in a weird science-fiction setting, having already been a Secret Service agent in Wild Wild West and having just recently made fun of buddy cop movies and immigrants in Men in Black.
Several scenes and ideas were excised with a scalpel from the final version of the film, the loss of which caused minor myopathy, such as: Ozzy and Drix meeting exercising sperm cells at Gonad's Gym, Ozzy and Drix visiting the See World amusement park in the eye, an extended runny nose sequence where Ozzy saves Drix from
Hulk Hogan's Frank's Fingerpoke of Doom, and an extended chase against Thrax where Ozzy and Drix take a "shortcut" by falling into the esophagus and getting burped up. A rough draft of the script, seen in its ultrasound, would've had Ozzy losing his family in a blood drive, thus explaining why he is so lonely in the movie, with Frank getting a blood transfusion to save his life and Ozzy's relatives returning at the end à la Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Another scene would've shown Mayor Phlegmming, in a genuine shocking plot twist, resigning after nearly destroying his city and handing the reins over to Tom Colonic, showing some marginally positive qualities to the Mayor that we never got to see in the final cut. Sito and Kroon wanted to include these expository scenes to further flesh out the animated characters and their inside world of Frank, like cinematic sarcomeres in the movie's muscle fibers, but the Farrelly Brothers vetoed them because they wanted more live-action scenes of Frank vomiting and popping a zit, like a parasitic twin absorbing the other in the womb.
Originally the film was rated PG-13 for having numerous vulgar innuendo jokes inappropriate for kids, but Warner Bros. managed to poorly edit it into a PG movie by cutting out some of those jokes while inexplicably leaving in many others (i.e. a statue of sperm that says "Our Founder", Leah quipping that Ozzy "divides with himself", Ozzy thinking the uvula is the dangly thing in Frank's boxer shorts when it's actually the one in his throat, etc.). The soundtrack also contained some highly questionable lyrics for a kids' movie, but the editors successfully managed to misrepresent those artists' works by editing them with a meat cleaver, while still introducing the few kids that bought the soundtrack to one-night stands, oral sex, booze, weed, gang wars, and again, how the hell did no one mention Kid Rock's explicitly-stated fondness for statutory rape in a kids' movie? This movie was for kids, right? Chris Rock says he is?
The film's rap- and R&B-flavored soundtrack isn't as main-bloodstream and recognizable as say Grand Theft Auto's, but like the animation, it's pretty well-done and has a nice heartbeat to it. Whereas Disney gets spit for suggestive sexual imagery that they then remove in later editions just to be on the safe side because enough people complain, all the watchdog critics were apparently magically made temporarily deaf when they watched this flick. As far as date movies go, it's probably the best cartoon around to cuddle to in the back of a movie theater, as long as you don't pay attention to Bill Murray vomiting. All the lyrics about packing heat can be explained away as being intended for police officers, like Ozzy and Drix, and the scene where Ozzy is disgusted by pus beer will totally push kids away from alcohol more than the multiple song lyrics that imply getting totally wasted. Osmosis Jones was originally rated PG-13 for language, but by selectively editing the usage of its songs managed to get down to a PG, which really should have won someone an Oscar for Sound Editing and a Parental Advisory label for the soundtrack, featuring children's cartoon characters on the front cover, Kid Rock's explicit fondness for underage girls on the inside, and children's cartoon character with an explicit fondness for underage girls Kidney Rock on the back cover. I mean, it's really hard to look like the biggest pedophile when you're featured alongside R. Kelly, but somehow he took home the gold
en shower; if he ever gets elected to the Senate, he's sure to fit right in with Senator Roy Moore taking the stand to denounce Obummercare.
Nelly's St. Lunatics scratch up records like a cold to throats with "Summer in the City", introducing kids to the wonders of Vietnam and the post-apocalyptic resource-ravaged world of Mad Max with some medicinally-dope rhymes and honking the horn while violating cruising laws that disproportionately target people of color. Cherise isn't about to be "2nd Best" and treated like all the rest; her boyfriend's rebuttal is impressively rhythmic but still insufficient. Drama's "Big Ball" introduces kids to "getting my smoke on" (referring to car exhaust naturally), getting crunk, and hotty-hos. Solange's "Solo Star" is about girls' fashions needing to be unique, and how she doesn't wear brands like Versace or Gucci, in what's probably the only song a child would comprehend the actual message of unless they have had a string of bad relationships or substance addiction by middle school. Brandy's "Open" teaches girls what it's like to have a playah for a boyfriend.
Craig David asks listeners to "Fill Me In" "like chocolate all over your body". Don't forget R. Kelly's "I Believe"; the kids love him and he uses gospel singers, so he must be a good guy. It's unfortunate the movie never featured a urothelial cell caricature in the bladder scene, because Kelly would've been a perfect fit for the role. In case you thought the producers were a discriminating bunch, white rapper Kid Rock shows up in animated kidney form singing about packing heat in "Cool, Daddy Cool", with beers in the back, and a fatty in his ashtray, because he apparently discriminates against overweight girls by smoking them into dust over his ashtray. He'll only be your friend if you have some endo to smoke, though. Kid Rock likes them young ladies underage, see, possibly with three breasts and green as well; some say that's statutory, but Joe C. feels it's mandatory. De La Soul's "Turn It Out" is probably just about a blowjob, not curb-stomping, as implied by slipping right in like a microphone to a microphone stand, though all the talk of bottles will probably make you thirsty for a 40 to wash down all the dick.
Trick Daddy's "Take It to Da House" drops the N-bomb, explaining the history and complex nuance behind it to children while getting drunk pissy to two bottles of Crissy Criss and getting crunk with hos. Trick is callin' his peoples all across the world; this song goes out to all the boys and girls, teaching them more about sex education than the Texas school board is legally allowed to. Remember girls: whatever you do, don't stop, shake it here and there, and let Money Mark get off in that derriere, 'cause that fine ass can't get pregnant, you dig? If your homies MIA from a gang war, take it to da house kids. Wanna smoke and slip 'n' slide, you better take it to da house, or else officers Ozzy and Drix will bust your party up and throw you in the back of a squad car. Trick Daddy ain't never had sex that costed, because like Sting's seven-hour tantric sex, he fucks so much he's exhausted. Nivea also wants to fuck, as indicated by "Just in Case", but all she does is offer her phone number and suggest she'll treat you better than your girlfriend, as she may never get this chance again; she must not know you all that well, or she'd have your number already or be able to talk to you again. Debelah Morgan is also just looking for a moment of love in "Why Did You Have to Be", wanting some stranger to hold her close in the night who she didn't mean to fall in love with but did; she's done playing the field but unfortunately he's still just a mack daddy playah. Sunshine Anderson meanwhile plays hard to get on "Don't Be Mad"; since she won't let you hit it and you have to wait until she lets you in, it's probably the most cell-abate of the songs.
The Nappy Roots are more kicked-back on "Here We Go Again", riding down a bumpy country road smoking some bowls in the back as they proceed to outrun some country boys, who are probably just pissed one of their sisters is dating a black dude. While in hot pursuit of cold beers, the Roots read a grocery list of delicious Southern foods, reading it off at the speeds of auctioneers as they get a case of the munchies, and settle a simple misunderstanding they attempt to alleviate diplomatically. Like Sunshine Anderson and Cherise, Ms. Toi is also tired of bullshit from men, performing a lyrical autopsy on her marriage in "Love Me or Leave Me"; you can stop looking because she has all you need, a gangster geisha. You should be glad she's not taking everything because she has the communication skills to pay the best lawyers' bills and will chew you up as an ingot and spit you out as bullets; she has a faster, sharper, and more acerbic tongue than most poisonous snakes. Ezekiel Lewis's "Rider Like Me" will make you thirsty for Cognizac as he's open-minded, to boning or chillin'. Ezekiel's a soldier, but he's just trying to make peace between the East and West Coasts, 'cause no matter what club you at, whatever our differences, we all just want to party, get fucked up, and get laid at the end of the day. Racial diversity returns to the soundtrack when white Uncle Kracker's "Break U Off" ponders what all these fine women are doing in his neighborhood as he macks on them after they come onto his block with a frown and leave with a fatlip. He isn't looking to buy your love, but he is selling and he'll set your little world on fire, and possibly your ex-boyfriend's house as well. Kracker will give you his shot nerves by performing a nerve transplant, so you can feel his pain before his wrath. Nothing quite breaks domestically-abused women off like offers of revenge from a hitman that hits on them.
Osmosis Jones received generally mixed reviews due to its inconsistent quality between the live-action and animated scenes; critics found the tonal shifts bipolar and the cuts from animation to live-action swerved up and down so much to the point that audiences had to be provided complimentary buckets of KFC to eat and then vomit profusely into. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 55% based on 108 reviews, with the critical consensus stating, "The animated portion of Osmosis is zippy and fun, with more squash and stretch, snot, and three-breasted green germ girls than John K.'s most Nyquil-enhanced fever dreams, but the live-action portion is more lethargic than Me, Myself & Irene." CinemaScore let it pass with a B-, as it clearly showed the potential to be as sharp as a wisecracking surgeon, but it just flatlined, assisted in its box office suicide-bombing by the Farrelly Brothers.
The film was described by Variety as "like Who Framed Roger Rabbit, you know, but without the interaction, or the mystery." Jonathan Foreman of the New York Post found it "no funnier than a biology class, with a plot taken from a textbook on writing cop dramas" and actually found it of less educational value than usual from the Farrelly Brothers, whose films normally make good medical cadavers for film students to dissect and discover what killed them. Chris Hewitt of Miami Times, Florida's premier black newspaper, found the casting of actual black people in the roles of Ozzy, Leah, and Thrax to be "classy", compared to the alternative even more old-school method of casting all-white actors in blackvoice singing minstrel tunes. Hewitt also found the black casting choices "politically correct" however, saying "You have to wonder how many Latino and Asian actors in LA tried out for parts they were never really in the running nose for." "Wait, who exactly was the target audience for this movie again?" asked The New York Times, who found the film equally offensive for the whole family. "Preteen boys don't really relate to preteen girls, and most preteen girls aren't too big on police procedurals set inside the body of a middle-aged man, unless it's Barbara Gordon or Nancy Drew performing their first autopsy," the Times continued, "so presumably it's a PSA for idiotic Americans like Bill Murray's character, who skipped out on health class and need the basics of the food pyramid snuck into their grossout comedies like a dog being fed its pills."
Osmosis Jones was a financial fart, earning only $14 million against a heart-stopping budget of $70 million, though its pulse rate was later restored by big VHS/DVD sales; some blame Shrek for driving away interest in 2D animated films with fart jokes, as audiences instead preferred to see 3D animated films with fart jokes. How it is that no one in the news media ever complained about the official soundtrack mentioning statutory rape as being mandatory is nothing less than a mystery; you'd think after the film's abysmally low returns that Warner Bros. themselves would beg the media to start a controversy just to spark interest, in the vein of P.T. Barnum's "any publicity is good publicity," although if they were that business-savvy we clearly wouldn't have the tonally-bipolar, monochromatic DCEU plagued by stupidity that we have now.
Despite Osmosis Jones being a financial heart-attack, that apparently didn't stop Warner Bros. from spinning it off into Ozzy & Drix, a Saturday morning cartoon on their flagship Kids' WB! block. In fact, WB reportedly greenlit the show even before production on the movie began, making it seem that they were oddly banking more on this low-budget TV series than the high-budget movie they poured $70 million wasted dollars into. Running from 2002 to 2004 for a surprising two seasons (most movie spinoffs only get one season), the series involved the titular duo getting sucked out of Frank (who in typical American fashion has reverted to his old habits, chowing down on nachos and hot wings and being fatter than ever before) by a mosquito and transferred into the body of a Cuban teenage boy named Hector Cruz (had the movie been set in him instead of Frank, it would've made more sense for the host body to be subconsciously fluent in Spanish), who's evidently addicted to cold medicine. In the process, the film's adult humor and coolness factor were surgically removed and cheesy aesops and kid-friendly humor were grafted into their place.
The operation was a success, and without the necrotic live-action segments directed by the Farrelly Brothers, the franchise's cognitive functions returned to normal. Sadly, the hospital bill took its toll on the show's budget as Ozzy's walk cycle would never be as smooth again, Drix was no longer three-dimensional, their replacement voices sounded like Chris Rock and David Hyde Pierce with bad colds or something, none of the new villains could match up to Thrax (except Tim Curry as Nic'O'Teen), and complexly-animated stock footage from the movie was recycled continuously which jarred with the show's otherwise-simplistic animation style. There's also a notable absence of sexy estrogen receptor cells in purple boots and miniskirts that barely cover their underwear, with Ozzy's new love interest Ellen Patella being too plain to compensate.
- Dumb and Dumber
- There's Something About Mary
- Bruce Almighty
- Space Jam
- Who Framed Roger Rabbit
A Man Getting Hit in the Crotch 800 Times (2006) ♦ Amadeus (1984) ♦ American Graffiti (4 BBY) ♦ The Aristokatz (2005) ♦ Baby Geniuses (1999) ♦ The Big Lebowski (1998) ♦ The Boondock Saints (1999) ♦ The Brothers Solomon (2007) ♦ Carry On Film (1970) ♦ Cohenheads (1993) ♦ Dude, Where's My Time Machine? (2000) ♦ Evan Almighty (2007) ♦ Expelled (2014) ♦ Goat Musters (1984) ♦ Ghostbusters III (2010) ♦ Happy Land 2 (2011) ♦ Home Alone (1990-something) ♦ Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992) ♦ I Am Legend (1845) ♦ The Mask (1994) ♦ Norbit (2007) ♦ Osmosis Jones (2001) ♦ Raging Bull (1980) ♦ Requiem for a Dream (2000) ♦ Reservoir Dogs (1992) ♦ There's Something About Mary (1998) ♦ Uh oh! (1996) ♦ Withnail and I (1987)