Sunday, December 27, 2009

Movie Review: Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel **
Directed By:
Betty Thomas.
Written By: Jon Vitti and Jonathan Aibel & Glenn Berger based on the characters created by Ross Bagdasarian.
Starring: Zachary Levi (Toby), David Cross (Ian), Jason Lee (Dave), Wendie Malick (Dr. Rubin), Justin Long (Alvin), Matthew Gray Gubler (Simon), Jesse McCartney (Theodore), Christina Applegate (Brittany), Anna Faris (Jeanette), Amy Poehler (Eleanor).

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel is much better than any movie about singing chipmunks has any right to be. No, it’s not a new classic kid’s movie or anything like that. Most of the adults who end up seeing the movie are going to go with their children, and they will probably enjoy the film a lot more than they expect they will. Most other adults will never see the movie anyway. I believe you have to judge a movie based on what it aims to achieve. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel does pretty much what it wants to do - be a funny, entertaining movie for kids.

I grew up watching the TV show, loving every minute of minute. Trouble making Alvin, smarty pants Simon and my favorite, sweet chubby Theodore. They were rock stars who always got their “dad” Dave Seville mad at them. The two movies based on the TV show have pretty much kept the story in tact. Jason Lee is Dave, and he yells “Alvin” at the top of his longs as well as anyone could expect him to. Justin Long, Matthew Gray Gubler and Jesse McCartney provide the voices for the chipmunks, and although their voices have obviously been changed, you can still tell it’s them under their (especially Gubler, who I watch every week in Criminal Minds, and keeps his unique delivery in tact).

In this movie, Dave is hurt because of an accident caused by Alvin, and has to stay in Paris recovering. His cousin Toby (Zachary Levi, from another of my favorite shows, Chuck), has to watch the chipmunks. He is a 30 year old slacker who plays video games all days. To make matters worse, the chipmunks are starting high school. The girls love them, but they run afoul of the jocks, who torment them.

Not only that, but they meet the Chipettes -Brittany (Christina Applegate), Jeanette (Anna Faris) and Eleanor (Amy Poehler), who also come to the school and challenge their singing supremacy. Before they get to the school though, Ian (David Cross), the villain from the first movie gets his hands on them, and sees them as their ticket back to the big time. Of course, along the way, everyone learns some valuable lessons about loyalty, friendship and family, and everything works out for the best.

The movie goes quickly enough, and the time passes pleasantly. There is nothing in the movie that gets you to forget that you are watching a movie about singing chipmunks. No it doesn’t transcend its genre or anything, and most of the jokes are aimed at five year olds (although there is a Dutch oven joke, that although of course it is a fart joke, still made me laugh). I still loved poor Theodore, who in this movie becomes depressed and is just too cute for his own good. The film is what it is. If you have kids, they will love it. If you don’t, you weren’t going to see this movie anyway - so why the hell are you reading this review?

No comments:

Post a Comment