Film

Addams Family 2: The cast seem to have enjoyed making it...

The Addams Family 2 is an amusing adventure film with a stellar cast. Georgia Humphreys meets stars Charlize Theron and Chloe Grace Moretz.

The Addams Family 2 hasn't attracted strong reviews, but its cast seem to have enjoyed making the animation

SHE may be a Hollywood star, but Charlize Theron says she's just like any other parent; constantly trying to figure out how to impress her kids.

And her latest project - animated comedy sequel The Addams Family 2 - is one the South African-born star (46) can share with her two young daughters, Jackson and August.

"The majority of my work, they will probably not be able to see until they're 52," quips the versatile actress, who won an Oscar in 2004 for her role in Monster, as serial killer Aileen Wuornos.

Much more appropriate for family viewing is Theron reprising her role as the cool, calm and collected mum Morticia Addams.

In the new film - based on the original Addams Family cartoon characters, which began in the New Yorker in 1938 - the spooky clan is off on a road trip across the United States, in the hope of becoming closer as a family once again.

You see, Wednesday (voiced by Chloe Grace Moretz) and Pugsley (Javon 'Wanna' Walton) are growing up, and Morticia, and particularly her husband Gomez (Oscar Isaac), aren't dealing well with it.

As they all move into their haunted camper for the summer, along with Uncle Fester (Nick Kroll), and with plenty of mishaps along the way, it's a fun - and at times, quite heartfelt - adventure.

We see Wednesday go on a personal journey throughout the story, as she deals with an identity crisis of sorts, questioning who she is and how she relates to her family.

"I was really excited this time around to see how much more of a main player that Wednesday was in the storyline," notes Atlanta-born Moretz (24).

"I really had so much to kind of delve into and it was really, really interesting for us to find the different shades of emotion within Wednesday.

"How does she express sentimental emotions that are coming through her? Usually she's so cynical, and sociopathic almost.

"So it was really fun to start to realise, how does she deal with angst? What does that feel like within her? And what does surprise sound like for Wednesday Addams, when she's someone that's never surprised by something?"

There have been several adaptations of The Addams Family on screen over the years.

Perhaps the key to the characters' longevity is that aside from their eerie supernatural skills, really, they're just like any other family having to deal with sibling squabbles, oddball relatives (Snoop Dogg voices Cousin Itt in this latest iteration), and sassy teenagers (listen out for Wednesday's brilliantly cutting and sarcastic lines).

"We go through a discovery process of trying to figure out who we are and where we fit in, and when the hormones kick in, we tend to feel things really, really deeply, and we become incredibly sensitive - and that's part of adolescence," suggests Theron, who's also known for films such as Mad Max: Fury Road and Tully.

"Wednesday is definitely going through a lot of that in the film, and her parents are just really grasping, trying to figure out how to fix it, or how to get her to not completely disengage. No matter how different The Addams Family feels to you, there's a theme, there's a correlation there that we can all relate to."

Moretz has been acting since she was a child, but it was her role - aged just 13 - in the black comedy superhero film Kick-Ass that really made her a star.

Having grown up in the public eye, can she remember a time where she really felt like she didn't fit in?

"I feel like half the time even now, you go to any of these like fancy award shows, I'm like, 'I don't know that I'm supposed to be here'," she confides.

"After quarantine, I am especially these days like, 'I don't know if I fit in right now'.

"That's a part of the human path of life, feeling out of your comfort zone and feeling like you're having a little bit of a fish out of water experience, and navigating through that in your most genuine way and not having to blend in with everyone," she continues.

"Be whoever you want to be; stand out if you want to stand out or be a wallflower if you want to be a wallflower."

The last new release Moretz could be seen in was the live-action and computer animation hybrid adventure Tom And Jerry.

Asked why she's found herself drawn to more family-friendly films recently, the star - who's also known for playing the titular role in the 2013 remake of horror favourite Carrie - muses: "It's been really fun to flex more of my comedic ability, and that's something I found with Tom And Jerry and with this, is I really got to kind of show a side of myself that a lot of people haven't seen.

"I predominantly centred myself more on the drama, thriller, horror, action front, and it's been really fun to kind of flip the script and do more of some family-friendly, more slapstick comedy moments, while also peppering in the smaller projects, and projects that are a bit more serious and take themselves a little bit more seriously.

"I want to show a bit more of who I am and, honestly, people that know me personally, I'm kind of a ham. So, I've just been being more myself on-screen than putting that away."

For Theron, the appeal of playing Morticia is partly down to her approach to parenting and being a mum.

"It's unusual, and I think it touches upon personality aspects that sometimes we don't associate with mothers, that she can be kind of sarcastic and dry and maybe distant, but that there is never a question of her love for her children. She really has a deep connection with her family and is, in many ways, the glue that keeps the family together."

The fact the film was made during the Covid-19 pandemic meant the cast had to record their scenes remotely from home, so Theron's kids got to witness their mum at work.

"I was in my basement with a computer," she recalls. "We all managed, we had to. It was also a nice distraction. We were in lockdown and it gave me something to do, and my girls actually really enjoyed it.

"I was very lucky to have this during Covid, it was a nice job to have."

::The Addams Family 2 is released in cinemas today. Turn the page for a review and Ralph McLean's Cult Movie assessment of the original The Addams Family.

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Film