Don’t read the long last paragraph, it’s just a rant and has no place in a review
“It’s okay girls, go inside, have a cookie, turn on the TV, calm down …”
Again, as with M:I3, I didn’t expect much from this at all. Working on my Oscar predictions, I’ve constantly come to a complete standstill on the animation category in a year when the Pixar release was below their standard (though still great) and everything else, including this, in trailer form at least looked just horrendous. But in just the first few minutes, I caught myself laughing out loud, got tingly on my back as the soundtrack kicked in, and this just didn’t let up for the duration. Just as my interest waned, another gag would catch me off guard, and they save the best laugh till last, surely one of the funniest scenes of the year when Hammy the squirrel is finally given caffeine.
The only thing I would fault about the movie, and I admit, it’s sort of lame, is the whole junk food/video games/“the good (ie. lazy) life” thing running all the way through. I actually cringed early on when I thought the movie might turn into some kind of awful “look what we’re doing to ourselves and the environment with this lifestyle,” treatise … but cringeworthy as that would’ve been, I think they could’ve at least thrown something in saying, like, I know this looks like fun, kids, but it is not only bad but effing rotten and disgusting and lethal for you. I know, I know, that makes me sad old dad man doctor monster bore saying that, but we’re all stuffing the worst crap down our throats and our kids are even worse, and I don’t think it helps that the big Dreamworks animation for the year has a whole scene in effect praising the Dorito in all its MSG-coated glory. I’d like to see a Clerks II style sequel in 10 years showing the same animals in the same spot, more hemmed in by suburbia, pot-bellied, skin-destroyed, braindead, fur hanging off in patches, wondering why? while still munching evil snackables.