31 October 2013 5:00 AM, PDT | Pop2it | See recent Pop2it news »

"Free Birds" is more proof, as if 2013 needed it, that Hollywood has almost killed the animated goose that laid the golden egg.

No matter that in this case, the goose is a turkey. You didn't need to be told that. But a year that has produced the clever and heartfelt "The Croods" and the passably amusing "Despicable Me 2" has also had a healthy dose of sausage factory about it. "Epic," "Monsters University," "Planes," "Escape from Planet Earth," "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" and "Turbo" -- all major pictures that hint at a talent pool spread absurdly thin and an industry with sneering contempt for its audience. ("Animate it, charge 3-D prices and their parents will grit their teeth and bear it!")

A start-up division called Reflex Animation did "Free Birds." Relativity is releasing it. They make the same mistakes that generations of animators made before them, having »

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