Thursday 8 December 2011

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked review

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked (U, 87 mins)
Director: Mike Mitchell
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

Alvin and his brothers Theodore and Simon are computer generated rock star chipmunks whose two movie outings thus far have set box office tills worldwide ringing to the tune of $800m, all the while offering barely a moment’s entertainment. This inevitable second sequel sees them, along with their ‘dad’ Dave (Jason Lee) and girl group the Chipettes on a cruise ship, where what Dave has planned as a relaxing vacation turns into a nightmare thanks to Alvin being more mischievous than ever. A hang-gliding stunt ends up with them lost at sea, where sadly they don’t drown but end up on a desert island where sadly they're not eaten by foxes. Once again, an actual plot is not on the minds of the filmmakers, though the island setting does keep it focussed and there is real threat and stakes. Still, there are many inexplicable elements, with once again the Chipettes voiced by Anna Faris and Christina Applegate when they could be anyone, and really the film is just mostly a tired parade of dance routines and cover songs. There’s no faulting the CGI used to realise the rodents, and there are a couple of nice Cast Away gags, but largely it’s pratfalls and pop culture references, and to say it’s an improvement on the brain-piercing atrocity that was the second Alvin movie, The Squeakquel, is damning with very faint praise indeed.

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