Imagine That (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Karey Kirkpatrick|
|Music by||Mark Mancina|
|Edited by||David Moritz|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Box office||$23 million|
Imagine That is a 2009 comedy film starring directed by Karey Kirkpatrick and written by Ed Solomon and Chris Matheson. It centers on the relationship between a workaholic father (Eddie Murphy) and his daughter, Olivia (Yara Shahidi), whose imaginary world becomes the solution to her father's success. The film was released on June 12, 2009 and was a box office failure and received mixed reviews from critics. Murphy was nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor for his work in the film.
The film is a co-production between Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies. Because Hotel for Dogs was released by DreamWorks instead of Paramount, Paramount reunited with Nickelodeon Movies to co-produce the film.
Evan Danielson (Eddie Murphy) is a very successful financial advisor, who had been working at the same securities firm for eight years as their top account manager, that is until Johnny Whitefeather (Thomas Haden Church) was hired as his rival. Whitefeather seems to have the whole company under some spell as he spiels his nonsensical idioms filled with Native American mumbo jumbo. These top executives seem more content with chanting Indian style noises rather than listen to how they can make money through sound investments. When Evan finally discovers that his daughter, Olivia (Yara Shahidi), is somehow able to tell the future within the financial world by using her 'goo-gaa' comfort blanket and her imaginary friends (Queen Qwali and Princesses Kupida, Sopida and Mopida), he discovers he has an invaluable upper hand now at the office.
In order for Evan to ask these imaginary friends any question he must travel through the imaginary world, through a dense forest, past a dragon, through caves, and even walk through France. Before, Evan who is a part-time father really had no time for his daughter, now is forced to play with her and by her rules. After only a couple of days with her, he rediscovers the inner child within himself and genuinely has a lot of fun playing these imaginary games with Olivia.
Whitefeather becomes suspicious and begins to search for Evan's secret. When he finds out that Evan was just playing with a blanket, he purchases a six thousand dollar blanket and forces his son to tell him the "future" and making him extremely hyperactive by making him drink many cans of Red Bull.
Whitefeather and Evan are now competing for the position of heading the Western division of the company D.D.E. In order to be prepared for the most important presentation of his life, Evan must once again invoke the use of the Goo-Gaa blanket and meet up with the princesses. The only problem is that Olivia is spending the night at her friends house, and there is no way for Evan to obtain the Goo-Gaa without taking it from her. Also, the presentations will be held on the day of Olivia's class play. Evan manages to get Olivia to give him the Goo-Gaa, but she is soon seen crying because he seems to care only about the blanket, not her. Evan returns home and tries to get the princesses' attention. Evan then starts working on his presentation. As hours pass, he stretches, and the Goo-Gaa falls on the floor, but he continues working without noticing. Evan decides to go to the presentation instead of Olivia's class concert. Johnny gives his presentation, but his idea is too crazy for the owner of the company. Then it's Evan's turn. When he is about to present, he suddenly decides to go to Olivia's class concert, and leaves the presentation. As he drives over, he changes into a king costume. Back at the class concert, Olivia is about to sing her solo part, then all of a sudden Evan appears dressed as a king, and Olivia starts singing, delighted to see him. After the class concert, Evan starts talking to Olivia about how sorry he is for misusing her blanket, not caring about her, and for using the princesses for the wrong reason. Meanwhile, the owner of the company, D.D.E. appears, and wants to talk to Evan. He and Evan talk, and he decides to give the position to Evan because of how much Evan cares about his family. Evan accepts. Evan goes back to Olivia, for whom it is time to say good-bye to the princesses. They both start waving, and as a gust of wind blows, some leaves form into the shape of a person then fly off into the sky. Evan, Olivia's mother, and Olivia leave happy.
- Eddie Murphy as Evan Danielson
- Thomas Haden Church as Johnny Whitefeather
- Yara Shahidi as Olivia Danielson
- Marin Hinkle as Ms. Davis
- Ronny Cox as Tom Stevens
- Stephen Rannazzisi as Noah Kulick
- Nicole Ari Parker as Trish
- DeRay Davis as John Strother
- Vanessa A. Williams as Lori Strother
- Martin Sheen as Dante D'Enzo
- Lauren Weedman as Rose
- Heidi Marnhout as Cheryl Whitefeather
- Stephen Root as Fred Franklin
- Jonathan Mangum as Franklin's Associate
- Mike Vorhaus as Franklin's Associate 1
- Catherine McGoohan as Mrs. Pressman
- James Patrick Stuart as Mr. Pratt
- Donovan Patton as Joe (uncredited)
The score to Imagine That was composed by Mark Mancina, who had previously worked with director Karey Kirkpatrick on Over the Hedge. He recorded his score with an 83-piece ensemble of the Hollywood Studio Symphony at the Sony Scoring Stage.
The film soundtrack features several covers of Beatles songs, such as "Got to Get You into My Life", "Nowhere Man", and two different versions of "Here Comes the Sun", while the song "All You Need Is Love" plays a part in the film's plot.
On its opening weekend, the film opened #6 grossing $5.5 million in 3,008 theaters with an $1,830 average. The film went on to gross $22.3 million worldwide, making this a box office bomb. This opened similar to Eddie Murphy's previous summer movie, Meet Dave, which also had a lackluster opening week. However, Meet Dave received worse reviews than Imagine That.
The film received mixed reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film an approval rating of 40% based on 115 reviews, with an average rating of 4.8/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Despite a promising turn by newcomer Yara Shahidi, Imagine That is another pedestrian family comedy that squanders Eddie Murphy's comedic talents." Another review aggregator, Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating, the film has received an average score of 54 out of 100, based on 23 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
Awards and nominations
|30th Golden Raspberry Awards||Worst Actor||Eddie Murphy||Nominated|
|Worst Actor of the Decade||Won|
|2010 Young Artist Award||Best Performance in a Feature Film - Leading Young Actress||Yara Shahidi||Nominated|
Imagine That was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on October 13, 2009.
- "Imagine That (2009)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved April 23, 2010.
- Dan Goldwasser (June 17, 2008). "Mark Mancina scores NowhereLand". ScoringSessions.com. Retrieved June 17, 2008.
- "Weekend Box Office Results for June 12–14, 2009". Box Office Mojo. June 14, 2009. Retrieved June 19, 2009.
- "Imagine That (2009): Review". Metacritic. CBS Interactive (CBS Corporation). Retrieved June 19, 2009.
- "Imagine That Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. NBCUniversal (Comcast) and Warner Bros. (Time Warner). June 14, 2009. Retrieved June 19, 2009.