Good Burger

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Good Burger
Good Burger film poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Brian Robbins
Produced by Mike Tollin
Brian Robbins
Written by Dan Schneider
Kevin Kopelow
Heath Seifert
Starring Kel Mitchell
Kenan Thompson
Abe Vigoda
Music by Stewart Copeland
Cinematography Mac Ahlberg
Edited by Anita Brandt-Burgoyne
Production
company
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates
  • July 25, 1997 (1997-07-25)
Running time 95 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $9 million
Box office $23.7 million[1]

Good Burger is a 1997 American comedy film directed by Brian Robbins and starring Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell. The film evolved from the comedy sketch "Good Burger" featured on the Nickelodeon series All That. The film was produced by Tollin/Robbins Productions and Nickelodeon Movies and released on July 25, 1997 by Paramount Pictures.

Plot[edit]

On the first day of summer, dim-witted but charming Ed (Kel Mitchell) experiences a nightmare featuring talking burgers. Troubled by it, he shows up late to work at Good Burger. On the same morning, Dexter (Kenan Thompson), a high school student, steals his mother's car after she leaves for a business trip. He accidentally crashes into that of his teacher, Mr. Wheat (Sinbad). With no driver's license or insurance, he is in danger of going to jail. Mr. Wheat agrees to allow him to pay for a total of $1,900 in car damage, which later becomes $2,500, instead of calling the police. He must find a summer job to pay for the expenses. He first finds employment at Mondo Burger, but after a clash with the strict manager, Kurt Bozwell (Jan Schweiterman), he is fired and has to find employment at another place, and manages to do so at Good Burger. There, he meets and reluctantly befriends Ed (who helps him find a job position) and a slew of colorful employees. Little does he know Ed inadvertently caused the car accident; he was rushing to make a delivery on rollerblades, and skated in front of Dexter, causing him to swerve and hit Mr. Wheat's car.

Dexter finds much success at Good Burger, but his success takes a turn for the worse. Across the street, the Mondo Burger where he previously worked opens to the public. It produces oversized burgers, much bigger than the Good Burgers, and threatens to put them out of business. Fortunately, with the invention of Ed's "secret sauce," they are saved. After Dexter realizes that Ed caused his car accident, he takes part of Ed's bonus paychecks earned from the sauce to pay off his debt to Mr. Wheat.

Good Burger continues to be popular because of Ed's sauce, causing Kurt to attempt to steal it. First, he entices Ed with a higher hourly wage at Mondo Burger. Dedicated to Good Burger, he denies it. He buys Dexter a similar yo-yo that his dad bought him as a kid. It was at this moment that he not only begins to truly care about Ed, but he is also overcome with guilt for taking most of Ed's bonus money. Kurt then sends in an attractive employee named Roxanne (Carmen Electra) who fails to seduce Ed into divulging his "secret sauce" recipe, ending up badly injured.

Meanwhile, Dexter takes a shine to coworker Monique (Shar Jackson), and she eventually agrees to a double date with him along with Ed and Roxanne. The next day, however, she tells him off and breaks up with him after she discovers his attempts to cheat Ed out of most of his money.

Later on, Ed and Dexter encounter a dog on the street and attempt to feed him a Good Burger and a Mondo Burger. It eats the former, but refuses to even look at the latter, apparently sensing something wrong with the meat. Suspicious, Ed and Dexter disguise themselves as old women and enter Mondo Burger to find out what is wrong with their meat. They discover that they chemically induced their burgers with an illegal food additive called "Triampathol," which makes them oversized. Kurt is not fooled by Ed and Dexter's disguises and kidnaps them by sending them to Demented Hills Mental Hospital (run by his friend) to prevent the public from learning Mondo Burger's secret.

After sending Ed and Dexter to Demented Hills, Kurt and his employees break into Good Burger after closing hours and spike Ed's "secret sauce" with shark poison. When Ed and Dexter's coworker, Otis (Abe Vigoda), attempts to call the police on them, Kurt takes him captive and sends him to Demented Hills as well. There, he tells Ed and Dexter about Kurt's scheme to poison the "secret sauce." They devise a plan to escape. Ed begins to dance and sing, encouraging the other patients to join in. After the entire mental hospital breaks out in dance, the trio escapes. They steal an ice cream truck to leave, but are pursued by a Demented Hills van; cleverly, Ed and Dexter throw ice cream treats at it, causing it to crash. Upon arriving at Good Burger, Ed stops a lady from eating a Good Burger with the poison-laced sauce just in time. Dexter then informs the staff that the sauce has been poisoned by Kurt and convinces them not to let anyone consume it. Ed and Dexter then break into Mondo Burger so they could expose the chemically-induced burgers to the police. While Dexter provides a distraction, Ed tries to take a can of Triampathol, but accidentally knocks one into the meat grinder. Ed then decides to pours the rest of it into there. On the roof, Kurt catches Ed and Dexter and confiscates the empty can that Ed is holding. Just then, the building begins to blow up, caused by the Triampathol-overdosed burgers exploding. After it destructs and the patrons flee, the police arrest Kurt for illegal substance use. Ed then explains to Dexter that he did that on purpose to prevent Kurt from manipulating the legal system and escaping conviction, ironically responding to Dexter's questions by saying, "I'm not stupid." With the destruction of Mondo Burger, Mr. Wheat's car is destroyed once again (much to Dexter's amusement as he hands him the first half of the money owed for the damage).

Dexter apologizes to Ed for taking advantage of the latter's salary from the sauce and both end up on friendly terms. They then walk back to Good Burger, where the employees praise them, especially Ed, as Good Burger heroes. The film ends as Ed proudly says "Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger. Can I take your order?"

Cast[edit]

  • Kel Mitchell as Ed, the cashier of Good Burger.
  • Kenan Thompson as Dexter Reed, a high school student who desires to slack during his summer vacation.
  • Abe Vigoda as Otis, an elderly Good Burger employee who cooks the French fries.
  • Jan Schweiterman as Kurt Bozwell, the C.E.O. and restaurant owner of Mondo Burger who will stop at nothing to make his food chain number one.
  • Sinbad as Mr. Wheat, a teacher who demands money from Dexter for car damage.
  • Shar Jackson as Monique, a female Good Burger employee who scolds Dexter for using Ed's gullibility to steal most of his money, but eventually becomes his girlfriend.
  • Dan Schneider as Mr. Baily, the owner and manager of Good Burger.
  • Ron Lester as Spatch, the head fry cook of Good Burger.
  • Lori Beth Denberg as Connie Muldoon, a customer whose extremely complex orders are too difficult for Ed to memorize.
  • Josh Server as Fizz, the drive-thru employee of Good Burger.
  • Ginny Schreiber as Deedee, one of the 2 female employees at Good Burger and a vegetarian.
  • Linda Cardellini as Heather, an insane girl in Demented Hills that has feelings for Ed.
  • Shaquille O'Neal as Himself
  • George Clinton as Dancing Crazy, a Demented Hills patient.
  • Robert Wuhl as an Angry Customer
  • Carmen Electra as Roxanne, a henchwoman of Kurt who tries, but fails, to seduce Ed into telling his secret sauce recipe.
  • Marques Houston as Jake, Dexter's high school friend.
  • J. August Richards as Griffen, one of Kurt's right hand men.
  • Hamilton Von Watts as Troy, Kurt's other right-hand man
  • Wendy Worthington as the Demented Hills nurse.

Filming[edit]

Most of the film's scenes were filmed along S Glendora Avenue in West Covina, California in 1996.[2] The building known as "Good Burger" in the movie was filmed at a restaurant currently known as "Peter's El Loco" 437 Glendora Ave., West Covina, CA. Meanwhile, Mondo Burger was located across the street at the Samantha Courtyard shopping center, with extra details added to the facade for the film.

Soundtrack[edit]

A soundtrack containing hip hop, R&B and rock music was released on July 15, 1997 by Capitol Records. It peaked at 101 on the Billboard 200 and 65 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.

Release[edit]

Short film[edit]

The Action League Now! episode Rock-a-Big Baby was released prior to the film's screening. It was rated PG "for some risqué humor".

Box office[edit]

In its opening weekend, Good Burger grossed $7.1 million, finishing in 5th at the box office. It went on to gross $23.7 million.[1]

Critical reception[edit]

Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 33% based on reviews from 27 critics.[3] Most praise came to Kel Mitchell and Kenan Thompson's performances.

Lisa Alspector of Chicago Reader gave the film a negative review, and wrote "The received notion that kids want their movies fast and furious is barely in evidence in this 1997 comedy, a laboriously slow suburban adventure in which a teenager's summer of leisure slips through his fingers when he has to get a job—an experience that proves almost life threatening because of the cutthroat competition between two burger joints".[4]

Andy Seiler of USA Today gave this film a score of 2/4, saying that "Good Burger is not very well done, but it does have energy".[5]

Leonard Klady of Variety enjoyed the film and wrote "The meat of the piece is definitely FDA cinematically approved, and perfect if you like this brand of entertainment with the works".[6]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote "It didn't do much for me, but I am prepared to predict that its target audience will have a good time." He gave the film two out of four stars.[7]

Home media[edit]

Paramount released the film on VHS on February 17, 1998 and on DVD on May 27, 2003. Warner Bros. Pictures re-issued the film on DVD on September 24, 2013.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=goodburger.htm
  2. ^ Filming locations for Good Burger, IMDb
  3. ^ "Good Burger (1997)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 1 April 2011. 
  4. ^ Alspector, Lisa. "Good Burger". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 2013-06-11. 
  5. ^ Seiler, Andy. "Good Burger". USA Today. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  6. ^ Horst, Carole (1997-07-21). "Good Burger". Variety (magazine). Retrieved 2013-06-11. 
  7. ^ Rotten Tomatoes - Good Burger Reviews

External links[edit]