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Innerspace (1987 - PG)

Joe Dante directed this 1987 sci-fi comedy, inspired by "Fantastic Voyage", in which Navy test pilot and hell-raiser Tuck Pendleton (Dennis Quaid) is miniaturized for what's supposed to be a super-secret journey into a lab rabbit -- but instead he finds himself injected into neurotic grocery store clerk Jack Putter (Martin Short). Co-starring Meg Ryan as Pendleton's girlfriend, Innerspace features engaging performances from Quaid and Short, and snagged itself an Oscar for Visual Effects.

INNERSPACE could be compared to "Fantastic Voyage." Martin Short is a hoot as the grocery worker. Kevin McCarthy, who's been associated with Sci-Fi, since his appearance in "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," (1956), entertains as a rich, bad guy. The FX of Dennis Quaid in a mini-sub, cruising around inside Short's body, are delightful.

Dennis Quaid, Martin Short, Meg Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Fiona Lewis, and Henry Gibson.

Directed by Joe Dante.

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SYNOPSIS...

Scientists shrink down a man inside a mini sub. Before he can be injected into a laboratory rabbit, terrorists break in. A scientist goes on the run with the miniature guy, (in his sub), in a hypodermic needle.

A timid grocery clerk accidentally gets injected with the needle. When the guy inside him begins to talk to him, the guy thinks he's going crazy. Eventually, the clerk begins to listen to the voice, developing a relationship with the miniature guy inside his head. An evil, wealthy dude conspires to get the secret component related to miniaturization.

The wealthy guy and his associates are shrunk down to pint size. The miniature guy leaves the clerk's body, returns to normal size, and marries his girlfriend.

REVIEW...

Director Joe Dante's, ("Gremlins"), INNERSPACE, is a fun, send up of "Fantastic Voyage".

Director Dante makes good use of Martin Short's (TV's "Saturday Night Live"), gift for physical comedy. The idea of nerd Short having a smirking, cool guy Quaid inside his body, directing his actions, is a great idea that's milked for maximum fun.

Dennis Quaid ("Undercover Blues") and Meg Ryan ("I.Q.", "When Harry Met Sally"), have very few scenes together, except at the start and end of the movie. In real life, that didn't stop them from falling in love and getting married, shortly after making this film.

A scene where Short romances Ryan, while being secretly coached by Quaid, is a lot of fun. It's my favorite scene.

Director of Photography, Andrew Laszlo, delivers strong screen imagery. He makes good use of the San Francisco locations, and gives us vivid views of Quaid and his mini-sub inside Short's body.

Industrial Light & Magic had a field day. The FX of Quaid cruising Martin's body are delightful.

Jerry Goldsmith's Musical Score is pulsing and dynamic. The pace of this film is brisk and Goldsmith's peppy Music helps keep things moving along.

INNERSPACE should be fairly watchable for most Sci-Fi viewers. Quaid/Short/Ryan fans will enjoy going along for the ride, as will "Fantastic Voyage" enthusiasts. INNERSPACE is a cool trip!

If you liked INNERSPACE you may enjoy FANTASTIC VOYAGE and/or 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA.