Why The Film ‘Dunston Checks In’ Is An Overlooked Masterpiece

A lot of amazing films were honored at the 1996 Oscars. Mel Gibson’s Braveheart. Woody Allen’s Mighty Aphrodite . John Lasseter’s Toy Story and Kevin Spacey’s turn as Roger “Verbal” Kint in Bryan Singer’s. The Usual Suspects.

But one film was left out.

Director Ken Kwapis’ monkey-in-a-hotel magnum opus Dunston Checks In. Dunston Checks In is an overlooked masterpiece that deserves more attention. A lot more attention.

I’m a huge fan of this film. But when I talk to people about Dunston, usually at social gatherings like this fun cookout my buddy Mike from Rec Soccer had last year, I get the same reaction. People smile and nod, but then steer the conversation into something non-Dunston related, usually other nostalgic topics like N64 or Babe: Pig in the City – another great film that I really love because of great writing and animal acting and cinematography, just not as much… So I have to speculate: Why is Dunston Checks In overlooked?

Dunston isn’t just a brilliant slapstick comedy, and it is…

The characters are actually really clever…

And there a couple of really cool shots…

But most importantly, the story has a lot of heart… Especially because the Dad and Boy miss their Dead Mom:

With so many great elements, it’s clearly a way smarter film than it gets credit for and definitely way more clever than what the final poster suggested. I made a couple posters that I think are better, I took graphic design classes all through high school, so I’m pretty good with Photoshop and Corel Painter.

But the defining artistic achievement that Kwapis and writers John Hopkins and Bruce Graham crafted was creating a nuanced three dimensional character in their titular star Dunston.


Edited and Produced by Greg Stees

Written and Performed by Greg Stees

Executive Producer

David Saint

Executive Producer

Chris Michael

Published at Wed, 14 Aug 2019 23:04:53 +0000

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