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Overall Rating

Awesome: 1.47%
Worth A Look: 17.65%
Average: 30.88%
Pretty Bad38.24%
Total Crap: 11.76%

7 reviews, 26 user ratings

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Chicken Little
[] Buy posters from this movie
by Collin Souter

"Small wonders"
3 stars

I have to make this vow. I canít take it anymore. It has to stop. So help me God, if I have to hear ďI Will SurviveĒ in any movie ever again, Iím walking out. Thatís it. No more. If that song comes on, Iím leaving the theater. Goodbye. You lost me. If thatís all the imagination your little movie can muster to try and get a cheeky, ironic laugh out of the audience, thereís nothing for us to say to one another. Honestly, can we please put a permanent ban on that song once and for all? While weíre at it, just as a preventive measure, can we do away with all things Pointer Sisters as well? Please? If for no other reason than I can stop trying to figure out how to segue from this rant into a review of Chicken Little?

Sorry, but thatís how it has to start off. I saw Disneyís first post-Pixar foray into computer animation with the hope that I would see a movie created by a team of writers and animators that have learned a thing or two from the beloved creators of Toy Story, Finding Nemo and The Incredibles, a team that did not want to embarrass their studio by showing complacency or lack of creativity. Sadly, Chicken Little takes too many easy ways out with a story that canít decide if it wants to coast on down-home charm or science fiction adventure. It could have done both, but the writers donít appear to have too much faith in their own creation.

The story starts out simple enough. The scrawny, pint-sized Chicken Little (voiced by Zach Braff) has a history for alarming the all-animal townsfolk with news that ďthe sky is falling.Ē His friends, a duck named Abby Mallard (Joan Cusack) and a pig named Runt (Steve Zahn) remain loyal and his father Buck (Garry Marshall) remains skeptical of Chicken Littleís ability to be successful at anything, especially baseball. Chicken Little proves him wrong on that count and all seems right with the world.

Then the sky falls. A mysterious transparent object falls into the hand of Little and his friends, along with a small, furry and inarticulate creature that looks like he belongs on the eraser end of a pencil. Soon, large mechanical creatures terrorize Little and his friends and now he must once again try to convince all the townsfolk that death is at hand. But, of course, the movie is really about the father-and-son bond between Chicken Little and Buck Cluck (why they donít have the same last name remains a mystery to me).

Chicken Little certainly doesnít represent the nadir of CG animated movies (that honor belongs to Shark Tale). The characters supply almost enough charm to make the messy storyline go down smoothly. Braff helps make Chicken Little a very cute and sympathetic protagonist and Garry Marshall is an inspired choice to play his father. In fact, Disney should be proud of the fact that their movie relies little on star power and personality to carry the material, unlike the folks at DreamWorks who practically salivate over the idea of putting WILL SMITH or BEN STILLER on all their posters.

Unfortunately, thereís little in the way of great material here to be carried. Too often, the movie goes for the obvious: Unimaginative pop culture references, boring music cues (REMís ďItís the End of the World As We Know ItĒ as the aliens invade) and ham-fisted sentiment accompanied by cavity-producing, Oscar-groveling Best Song nominees. Pixar wouldnít be caught dead resorting to these devices and thatís why so much rides on the success of this film, at least as far as Disneyís shareholders are concerned. Undiscriminating kids will likely enjoy it, but in the long run it will have a short lifespan, at least until after the straight-to-video sequel comes out.

Disney has also utilized a questionable marketing gimmick by running a 3-D print at selected theaters, which is how I happened to see it. I canít say the 3-D adds much. Itís neat, like most 3-D films tend to be, but unlike last yearís The Polar Express, thereís little to gain from the format. It feels like an afterthought, an idea brought about by sheer panic amongst the fearful suits at the Disney plantation. The numbers have yet to come in as I write this (opening day), but it almost seems like the powers-that-be figured if they took one of their lesser scripts (from the writers of Brother Bear) and just utilized CG instead of hand-drawn, theyíd have a hit. It might work, but if they continue with this line of thinking, their standing as a creative force will most certainly NOT survive.

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originally posted: 11/07/05 15:30:11
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User Comments

10/06/13 Shane Meh. 3 stars
10/19/11 Magic Even Dreamworks Animation would have been ashamed if they made this movie. 2 stars
5/03/08 Pamela White no plot, kids thought it was stupid 2 stars
6/25/07 nana quite funny 4 stars
6/15/07 Vincent Ebriega It takes more than just animation to make this nonsense any good. 1/5. 1 stars
4/25/07 Tiffany Losco good movie, I love chicken little 4 stars
4/01/07 fools♫gold Don't get your hopes up too much, the "kids" I'm near even said it was so-so. 2 stars
9/02/06 Chad Thomas Cute, especially for the kids! 4 stars
7/21/06 David Cohen They had to pad the film just to get to the parts with more padding 2 stars
6/29/06 George Hey Mark, learn to write a story!!!!! 1 stars
5/05/06 Cuenzie Wunzie 10! Sorry out of 10 or 100? Yeah 10\ 100 . 1 stars
4/22/06 Poopy Woopy Wheres the Fucking story!!!!!! 1 stars
4/15/06 Tabitha bad plot a 9 year old could write a better story 2 stars
4/06/06 Chris P. I liked its storyline and how it kinda took parts from other movies in a way nobody noticed 5 stars
4/02/06 JRE too many plots; was like 3 short movies in one 2 stars
3/29/06 tatum Funny, nowhere near the disaster reported 4 stars
3/28/06 Brian Meyer Walt Disney will rise from his grave to take revenge for this insult! 1 stars
1/11/06 Tamara D.Leonard Cute movie, the kids loved it. 3 stars
1/01/06 Jasper Poop 1 stars
11/17/05 Rebo Valence Pixar has nothing to fear from this turkey. 2 stars
11/14/05 NPD licken' chit-tle 1 stars
11/11/05 Dan Smith My Grandson Laughed his ass off. 4 stars
11/09/05 ga ga 3 stars
11/04/05 M.F. Chicken Little lays an egg 2 stars
11/04/05 Chicken Little Chicken Little makes a very small Chicken Pie (with extra *barf*) 1 stars
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  04-Nov-2005 (G)
  DVD: 21-Mar-2006

  10-Feb-2006 (U)


Directed by
  Mark Dindal

Written by
  Mark Dindal

  Zach Braff
  Garry Marshall
  Joan Cusack
  Steve Zahn
  Amy Sedaris
  Don Knotts

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