Starring Martin Lawrence, Ashton Kutcher, Jon Favreau, Gary Sinise, Jane Krakowski, Debra Messing, Billy Connolly, Patrick Warburton
Written By: Steve Bencich, Ron J. Friedman
Directed By: Roger Allers, Jill Culton
Studio: Sony Pictures Animation
Buy on Amazon.com link
There are so many CGI animal movies out there now, that’s kind of hard to keep track of what’s what. How is this one different than the other movies? It’s not different, just different actors and a different storyline. But Open Season provides many laughs for both children and adults and is worth watching if you like family animated movies.
Open Season is about a domesticated grizzly bear named Boog (Martin Lawrence), who’s never been out in the wilderness. He stays in the garage of the park ranger, Beth (Debra Messing), and loves it there. He uses her bathroom, he watches TV, and he has little shows with Beth to entertain children. No, not that kind of show! One day while driving to the local sheriff’s office with Beth, Boog encounters an injured scrawny deer named Elliot (Ashton Kutcher) and sets him free from some hillbilly hunter. The A.D.D deer then follows Boog around everywhere and wants to be friends with the bear. Just from Boog being around Elliot, bad things happen and they get into some trouble. They get banished to the deep wilderness, and Boog tries to find his way back. But he has to enlist the help of Elliot to get him out, but they start to realize that the wild isn’t free anymore. Lots of hunters roam the grounds and make all the animals fearful of living there. All of the animals join forces and take back what’s there and revolt against the hunters.
Open Season is the type of animated movie where both children and adults will love. I guess i’m considered an adult now and I enjoyed the movie! I know its been compared to Over the Hedge but I haven’t seen that film yet. Regardless of what it’s being compared to, I thought the the film was good but it’s not the most original thing out there. I just hope the animated movie market doesn’t get too over-saturated with animated animal movies. This one doesn’t really stand out from the others but then again I can’t remember the other films as well.
The story was kind of interesting, and I liked how a domestic bear had to go back into the wild and had no sense of how to be a real bear. The bear was afraid to go to the bathroom outside (cue in the poo jokes), and was afraid of deer herds and Scottish talking squirrels. I didn’t know what to expect with Martin Lawrence being a bear, but I overall thought he gave a funny performance. A lot of his trademark dialog and mannerisms were animated flawlessly on the bear. Ashton Kutcher was pretty annoying but that was the whole point. If that was the creator’s idea the whole time to have this hyper, short attention-span deer; they couldn’t have picked a better actor to voice Elliot. I thought Billy Connelly’s character was a great small character that made me laugh every time the squirrel came onto the screen. I especially loved the Braveheart reference at the end when all the animals revolted against the hunters.
I thought the ending was the best sequence in the whole movie; just seeing all the animals come up with different ways of getting the hunters was really funny. I thought another exciting sequence was the waterfall scene. Seeing a river chase AND a car chase in the same scene was pretty cool, even though it’s totally unbelievable. But then again, this is a movie about talking bears crapping in human bathrooms and talking animals with Puerto Rican & Scottish accents. Speaking of the waterfall chase, that scene was beautifully animated and really had some nice shots throughout that sequence. The colors were really vibrant, and loved the texture on certain things. It’s just the little details that makes a movie better than others. Kudos to Sony Pictures Animation for doing a great job with the animation for their first feature-length movie. Now if they can tackle a more original story & concept, they’ll be all set.
If you enjoyed the movie, there are some extras for you to watch. There’s a “making of the movie” featurette that’s pretty good. There’s interviews with the creators and other people involved with Open Season. They talk about the actors, the story, specific animated sequences like the waterfall scene and other things associated with the movie. For 15 minutes, they covered a lot of ground. After that, is a small featurette on the voices behind the characters. Each actor is briefly shown talking about their characters and the movie. Rounding out the extras is 2 deleted scenes (storyboards), a music video, audio commentary, games and DVD-rom features.
Open Season was similar to Madagascar, The Wild, Brother Bear and other animated animal movies, but it still had some funny moments. I’m usually pretty picky when it comes to animated movies now and I thought this one was okay. Both adults and children will like this.
– “Wheel of Fortune” Forest Edition game
– Inside the animals studio
– The Voices Behind the Stars
– Voice-A-Rama: See what the characters sound like with different accents
– Music video
– Deleted scenes
– Filmmakers commentary
– Ring tales
– Art gallery
– Beat boards
– DVD-Rom link to online fun
– Sneak peek at “Surf’s Up”
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1
Standard 1.33:1 Color
Favorite Scenes: When Boog & Elliot get to the wilderness, the Scottish squirrels, the waterfall scene, the ending
Running Time: 86 minutes