Mr. Magoo is a 1997 American comedy film directed by Stanley Tong (his sole English language film) and written by Pat Proft and Tom Sherohman. A live-action film adaptation of UPA's cartoon of the same name, it was produced by Walt Disney Pictures, and starred Leslie Nielsen as the title character, alongside Kelly Lynch, Matt Keeslar, Nick Chinlund, Stephen Tobolowsky, Ernie Hudson, Jennifer Garner and Malcolm McDowell.
The film was a critical and commercial failure, grossing $21 million, falling short of its $30 million budget. Criticism singled out the seemingly mocking portrayal of people with disabilities although the Walt Disney Company placed a disclaimer right before the closing credits.
Mr. Quincy Magoo (Leslie Nielsen), a wealthy canned vegetable factory owner, goes to the museum to attend a party. While there, Waldo (Matt Keeslar), Mr. Magoo's nephew, spies a woman named Stacey Sampanahoditra (Jennifer Garner), on whom he develops a crush. Later that night, jewel thieves Luanne LeSeur (Kelly Lynch) and Bob Morgan (Nick Chinlund) steal the museum's beautiful ruby "The Star of Kuristan" and escape on a boat to Austin Cloquet (Malcolm McDowell), Bob's boss.
Meanwhile, Mr. Magoo and his dog Angus go fishing in the same area as the jewel thieves' boat. Luanne picks a fight with Bob and in the scuffle, they lose the ruby which lands in Mr. Magoo's boat unbeknownst to Magoo. Bob goes after the ruby but fails by falling onto the paddle wheel of a paddle boat.
At the museum, the curator and Stacey send two agents: Gustav Anders of the CIA (Ernie Hudson) and Chuck Stupak of the FBI (Stephen Tobolowsky) to track down the ruby and spy on Mr. Magoo whom they believe stole the ruby. Stacey mentions she was invited to the opera where the Magoos go that night. Anders and Stupak also visit the opera to look for Mr. Magoo who is in the show. At the opera Mr. Magoo meets Luanne who pretends to be a magazine reporter named Prunella Pagliachi. She wishes Mr. Magoo luck at the opera, who immediately takes a liking to her. Stupak sneaks on the stage and fails to find any clue about Mr. Magoo with Mr. Magoo accidentally hitting Stupak with a big tool.
The next morning, Luanne tricks Mr. Magoo into taking her to his house with an injured ankle. Stupak finds a notebook with Luanne's fingerprints on it and realizes who Mr. Magoo is with. He and Anders go to Mr. Magoo's house where Stupak sneaks in looking for the ruby. Mr. Magoo and Luanne arrive at the house and Stupak hides from them. Bob sneaks into Mr. Magoo's house and finds the ruby. Upon being caught in the act, he steals Mr. Magoo's prized Studebaker with the Magoos and Luanne chasing after him in Magoo's Eggplant-mobile. Bob loses them and brings the ruby to Austin.
Austin plans an auction for his criminal friends from around the world and shows them the ruby. Mr. Magoo disguises himself as Ortega Peru, a thief from Brazil who never goes anywhere and joins the auction which is taking place in a communal indoor pool. However he is discovered when the fake tattoo on his chest is washed away by the water. Luanne breaks up the auction, steals the ruby, and escapes on a snow mobile away from the lair. The government arrests Austin and his friends while Mr. Magoo gives chase on an ironing board and winds up in the middle of a women's skiing competition. Waldo and Angus sneak out of the lair, catch up with Magoo, and track down the ruby.
Angus sees Luanne in disguise as an old woman and spills her purse which gives Mr. Magoo and Waldo a clue about where Luanne is going. The Magoos follow Luanne to Brazil where Waldo spies on the real Ortega (Miguel Ferrer) and his friends. Mr. Magoo steals a bride dress from Ortega's girlfriend Rosita (Monique Rusu) and is led to the wedding. Mr. Magoo steals the ruby from Ortega and finds himself being chased by Peru's men, the government agents and Luanne. Magoo then is trapped on a raft just before it goes over a waterfall but manages to invert the raft like a parachute so he can gently float to safety. He and Waldo return the ruby to the museum with the government arresting Ortega, Luanne and the people from Brazil.
Mr. Magoo and Angus go home after returning the ruby back to the museum.Leslie Nielsen as Mr. Quincy MagooKelly Lynch as Luanne LeSeur/Prunella PagliacciMatt Keeslar as Waldo MagooNick Chinlund as Bob MorganStephen Tobolowsky as FBI Agent Chuck StupakErnie Hudson as CIA Agent Gustav AndersJennifer Garner as Stacey SampanahodritaMalcolm McDowell as Austin CloquetMiguel Ferrer as Ortega "The Piranha" Peru
Mr. Magoo was shot in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil, Argentina and Vancouver, Canada; the scenes in the museum were filmed in the lobby of the Central Branch of the Vancouver Public Library. The animated sequences were produced by Yowza! Animation, a studio based in Toronto, Canada.
Mr. Magoo grossed $21.4 million domestically against a $30 million budget. Due to negative reaction from blind and near-sighted groups, Disney pulled the film from theaters after two weeks.
Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a rating of 7%, based on 28 reviews, with an average rating of 2.3/10. Some critics noted that the film included a disclaimer at the end stating that it was not meant to be an accurate portrayal of near-sighted or blind people. On Siskel and Ebert, both critics gave the film a thumbs down. Despite opining that the film was not offensive towards near-sighted people, and the disclaimer at the end was unnecessary, they also found it funnier than anything in the movie.