A live-action update of the characters Bill Cosby brought to life in the animated TV series of the 1970s. Fat Albert (Saturday Night Live's Kenan Thompson, padded) is a lovable young man who leaps from the television into the "real-world" living room of Doris (Kyla Pratt), a weeping high school student he intends to help. Albert's junkyard buddies, always in tow, follow him into the 21st century, where they're charmingly confounded by cell phones, hip-hop, and mean white girls. Albert falls in love, and Doris, though initially mortified by her kooky pals, gets the support she needs. The film is sweet and often genuinely funny, with lively musical numbers and a cast of entertaining personalities. It falters in its portrayal of the school villains (stereotypes, all) and whenever it tries too hard to pour on any one of its several syrupy messages. Also, it reeks of Hollywood, with dream-factory sets that appear far less real than the animation that inspired them. But it's OK. Fat Albert is easy to love.
Director: Joel Zwick
Writer: Bill Cosby, Lowell Ganz, Charles Kipps and Babaloo Mandel
Producer: John Davis
Cast: Omari Grandberry, Marques Houston, Kenan Thompson, Kyla Pratt, Jermaine Williams, Jeremy Suarez, Aaron Andre Frazier, Shedrack Anderson III, Dania Ramirez and Keith Robinson