Freddie as F.R.0.7 Review

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A man-sized frog is recruited by British Intelligence to stop villains who are shrinking England's national monuments.


The story, of an urbane amphibian who operates as a master spy, began life 20 years ago as bedtime tales for writer/director Acevski’s son. This dating is the main problem, as Freddie is so rooted in early Bond movies it saddles itself with send-ups that may have amused a middle-aged film producer — Freddie’s codename, his suave way with the ladies, his silk scarf ‘n’ vintage roadster flash, etc —- but won’t mean much to the Bart Simpson and South Park generation.

Add to that a notion of cartoon drama that crystalised way before Homer’s little lad was born (ie pre-Touchstone Disney) and you have a whole that looks so dated it’s open to question by even the dullest five year-old. Even TV’s Dangermouse managed a sufficiently cynical sense of irony.

Here, everything’s played dead straight : a young prince is orphaned by a wicked witch, then turned into a frog (Freddie) who grows six feet tall, wears clothes, is multi-lingual and joins the French secret service. Years later, said witch has teamed up with a snake who’s stealing historical buildings to suck out the earth’s “goodness” (why the Houses Of Parliament is included is anybody’s guess). Re-enter Freddie and old sores are settled, the world is saved and the buildings put back, with a little help from the Loch Ness Monster.

Considering all the filched plot developments comprising an over-complicated story-line, it will amuse only the very young who probably won’t have the attention span to sit still through it.