In early 1981, the Munsters were back in color for Fred Gwynne's, Al Lewis's and Yvonne De Carlo's final rendezvous as the wacky family. The Munsters' Revenge can be easily seen as just another '80s TV reunion movie, but it actually still retains many qualities from the original show, especially in the characters of Herman and Grandpa. It was luck that the producers got Fred Gwynne to reprise the role he had trying to conquer for the past fifteen years. His wife told him to name a unimaginable sum for his pay on the movie to the producers and they accepted. Al Lewis also was not sure he wanted to do the movie, but he did.
The Munsters' Revenge chronicles the further misadventures of the Munsters, as robots that look like Herman and Grandpa start doing crimes and Herman and Grandpa get blamed. At a local wax museum's chamber of horrors, four wax statues (but actually robots) that happen to look like everyone except Marilyn have been made. During the night the Herman and Grandpa statue-robots, with various other statue-robots from the museum, commit crimes. The next day, after Marilyn brings home her latest "victim" (as Eddie puts it) the police come in to arrest Herman and Grandpa. In jail, they find out they've been branded as "The Monster Muggers" and in order to clear their names Grandpa and Herman break out. Meanwhile, Marilyn takes a liking to the police chief's son, Glen Boyle, who convinces his dad to let him handle the Munster case.
Realizing that the wax statues aren't really wax statues, Herman and Grandpa discover that the museum owner, Dr. Diablo, and his cronies are planning to steal all of the jewels and treasures from a mummy when it comes to town for a Halloween exhibit. Herman and Grandpa go home (getting inside through the window), tell the family and Glen goes to convince his father. When the police go to the wax museum and find nothing, Glen gives up and has a fight with Marilyn. When all seems lost, Grandpa and Herman fly to Transylvania to get Grandpa's life rejuvenating potion, so that they can bring the mummy back to life. On Halloween, as Munster relatives from around the globe come to celebrate the festive holiday, Marilyn goes snooping around the wax museum, and gets caught. Glen comes, too, and both are stuck under a bell jar to suffocate. After many more hijinks at the Halloween exhibit with the mummy, all is well, and Herman and Grandpa's names are cleared.
The chemistry between Fred Gwynne and Al Lewis remains strong, but unfortunately Yvonne De Carlo is hardly used. K.C. Martel as Eddie is also hardly used, though Jo McDonnell is allowed to shine through as an empowered Marilyn in many scenes. Bob Hastings, who occasionally voiced the Raven in the original series, plays Cousin Phantom of the Opera (which he later said was his favorite role). The catchy music is composed by Vic Mizzy, famous for his scoring of "The Addams Family" and "Green Acres" in the 1960s. Overall a good movie for the avid Munster fan, The Munsters' Revenge was released on video and DVD, although it has been harder to find in recent years.
CAST Fred Gwynne as Herman, Yvonne De Carlo as Lily, Al Lewis as Grandpa, Jo McDonnell as Marilyn, K.C. Martel as Eddie, Sid Caesar as Dr. Diablo, Peter Fox as Glen, Bob Hastings as The Phantom of the Opera, Herb Voland as Chief Boyle, Howard Morris as Igor, Al White as Prisoner, Ezra Stone as Dr. Lichtlighter, Anita Dangler as Elvira. DIRECTED by Don Weis. WRITTEN by Arthur Alsberg and Don Nelson. PRODUCED by Arthur Alsberg and Don Nelson.