Dennis The Menace was a movie that I really liked watching as a youngster back in the early and mid 90s. However, I don’t remember much about the film and I always wondered if I would enjoy the movie if I saw it nowadays as an adult.
So recently I sat down and watched this movie. This would be the first time I watched it in over ten years. Fortunately, I’m glad to say that, yes, I do still enjoy this movie.
First off, Mason Gamble is perfect as the title character, 5-year old Dennis the Menace. Kellen Hathaway is great as Dennis’ best friend Joey. Lea Thompson (from Back to the Future and Caroline in the City) and Robert Stanton are Dennis’ parents and they look like how I remember them from the late 80s cartoon.
The best laughs in the movie, however, are provided by Walter Matthau as Mr. Wilson, the next door neighbor that Dennis torments. Matthau is absolutely hilarious in this role. His facial expressions are priceless. Matthau had me laughing really hard.
This movie does make me want to watch more Walter Matthau movies, as I have not watched very many of them. The only other movie of his that I remember watching is The Bad News Bears and I saw that movie when I was very young so I don’t remember very much about the movie. I know that he had another movie called Grumpy Old Men come out in the same year (1993) that Dennis The Menace was released. Grumpy Old Men was not a movie that appealed to me as a kid so I never watched it, but perhaps I’ll enjoy watching this movie now as an adult.
Anyway, Dennis The Menace was marketed as a family film so the one thing I don’t like about this movie is that it has some very mild sexual content that I could have lived without. However, this content is extremely mild and I would say that most parents wouldn’t mind their kids watching this film.
Other than that, Dennis The Menace is a good, solid family film that both kids and adults will enjoy watching. Unless you’re someone who does not like watching family films at all, I definitely recommend watching this movie, at least once.