Robbie the reindeer is determined to win a place pulling Santa's sled. Unfortunately, he's got two problems facing him. One, he's sadly out of shape; two, he doesn't realize his pal Blitzen is cheating! Confused by the temptations of sexy lady reindeer Vixen, and completely unaware of bubble-headed Donner's love for him, Robbie faces the race of his life. Written by
A Christmas treat in the mould of Wallace & Gromit and Chicken Run
Robbie is the son of Rudolph and is determined to follow in his Dad's hooves by getting a place on Santa's sledge team. However he is badly out of shape and is due to compete against Blitzen. He also is distracted by the seducing Vixen and ignorant of the doting Donner. Robbie must give his all in his race.
I've seen this twice but the first time I saw it I assumed that I'd hate it as it appeared to be the BBC trying to catch a lift on the coattails of animation such as Chicken Run etc. I was right in that the humour and the animation is the same, but happily this wasn't a cheap rip off, in fact it almost matches the Nick park stuff in terms of how good it is.
The plot is good but the characters and the side jokes make it worth watching at least once a year! Robbie himself is OK and O'Hanlon is a reasonable casting for the lead. Horrocks is a little dry but Coogan and Quentin are perfectly cast and really go to work with their characters. People like Enfield, Whitehouse, Ifans and Tomlinson just go to back up the calibre of the cast and add to the depth.
Williams is perfect as the narrator as he sets the cheeky tone really well. However far and away my favourite characters are the sports commentators for Robbie's race. UK viewers will know that Des Yeti and Alan Snowman are total spoofs on the BBC's old Match of the Day team. Everytime they were onscreen I was in hoots of laughter McGowan always does them well in his own shows but here his voices combined with the images just make it even better.
Overall there is plenty for kids to love and they will be happy for the whole film, but adults will be laughing just as hard and will get a lot more of the jokes. Not quite as good as Nick Park's recent efforts but still well worth a look as it'll beat the pants off whatever else is on TV for kids this Christmas.
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