Chicken Little - Review
Review by Jack Foley
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES: Deleted Scenes With Three Alternate Openings; Hatching Chicken Little Making Of Featurette; Where’s Fish Interactive Game; Shake A Tail Feather The Cheetah Girls Music Video; One Little Slip Barenaked Ladies Music Video; Karaoke Sing A Long Option; Audio Described.
DISNEY offer a glimpse of life without Pixar with the amiable Chicken Little – but while the animated adventure starts brightly it runs out of steam late on.
Zach Braff provides the voice of the eponymous chick whose life takes a turn for the worst when he creates panic in his hometown of Oakley Oak by claiming that the sky has started to fall in.
Alarmed to discover that it was only an acorn landing on his head, Chicken Little is quickly shunned by his schoolmates except for a trio of oddball mates comprised of Abby Mallard (Joan Cusack), Runt of the Litter (Steve Zahn) and Fish Out Of Water.
What comes hardest of all, however, is the impact it has on Little’s relationship with his dad, Buck Cluck (Garry Marshall), a former baseball hero who is unable to communicate with his son on the most basic level.
Chicken Little continually strives to win his father’s approval and comes close to doing so at a school baseball game, only to find fate intervening in the form of an alien invasion that just might prove he was right about the sky all along!
Having alarmed the town once, however, a second warning goes unheeded and it is up to Chicken Little and co to save the world from destruction.
For the most part, Mark Dindal’s movie is a bright, fast-moving and frequently amusing children’s adventure that benefits from the talents of its quality cast.
The opening sequence, in particular, is well handled (and includes a fun nod to Raiders of the Lost Ark), while the baseball game provides the biggest comedy highlight.
There are also plenty of sight gags, several in-jokes and a fizzing script to sustain audiences through the opening 45 minutes or so.
But once the aliens arrive, the film becomes a little bogged down in chase sequences and father-son bonding, which interrupts the flow and lays on the message a little too thick.
It is then that comparisons with Pixar are likely to be made and when Chicken Little pales by comparison to the far-superior likes of Toy Story and The Incredibles.
There’s little doubt that Disney was expecting big things from its first completely computer animated movie but while certainly impressive at times Chicken Little also comes up a little short in places.
Running time: 82 minutes