US Release Date: 12-14-2007
Directed by: Tim Hill
- Jason Lee, as
- David Cross, as
- Cameron Richardson, as
- Justin Long, as
- Alvin (voice)
- Jane Lynch, as
- Matthew Gray Gubler, as
- Simon (voice)
- Jesse McCartney as
- Theodore (voice)
Alvin and the Chipmunks hit the big screen.
Just maybe, if you have fond memories of the chipmunks you'll find something to like here, but I doubt it. Photo copyright: 20th Century Fox (2007)
Fifty years ago, The Chipmunks was a gimmick act that had a classic Christmas song. They made the high pitch voices by recording a singer, singing very slowly and then playing it back at high speed. Someone, somewhere thought they needed to be revived. I beg to differ with whomever made that call. In the new version Justin Long and two other actor's voices are altered to play the voices of Alvin, Simon and Theodore. Why they hired famous people makes no sense considering that their voices are altered and thus unrecognizable.
The movie opens with the three chipmunks getting their pine tree cut down and put in the lobby of a record company as a Christmas decoration. They tag along with, down on his luck, songwriter Dave to his home. He discovers them and that they can talk and sing. He ends up writing them the Christmas song that they are most famous for. They become a hit and the movie falls apart.
The movie could have been a passable Christmas movie as the chipmunks act like excitable little kids and Dave their frustrated parent. However, the plot moves beyond the holidays and soon the chipmunks are singing dance tunes at packed nightclubs of cheering 20 some things. The chipmunks get greedy and take up with their even greedier manager. Dave stays behind and acts like the concerned parent.
Had this movie stayed a Christmas movie, I may have been able to enjoy the whole chipmunks as children symbolism. Without the magic of Christmas you really notice just how stupid it is that everyone thinks that it is perfectly normal to have talking rodents. The final message that Dave and the three chipmunks are a "family" is so sappy that I could only forgive it, if it were in a Christmas film.
Baby boomers may find this movie a trip down memory lane but as for me, it is a journey not worth taking. As an inside note, Dave's home address, 1958, which is visible in several scenes, is the year that the chipmunks were created.
Photos © Copyright 20th Century Fox (2007)