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I saw it at a German press screening. Without giving too much away:
Most critics really seemed to like it very much. There was even
applause afterwards, which is quite unusual for that species. From my
point of view and until now, it was the funniest movie of the year. It
keeps the charm and wit of the three W+G shorts and it is enlarged with
many references to these and other movies. Of course, there are obvious
allusions to monster- and werewolf-movies, especially to "An American
Werewolf in London", "Jaws", "King Kong" and even to Peter Jackson's
"Braindead"/"Dead Alive", but also to other genres.
Characterization was better done in "Chicken Run", but that movie had a complete new "cast" where introduction was necessary. Here, you are already able to know the two main characters. So, the new "Wallace and Gromit"-movie is enjoyed best if you watched (and liked) the shorts already, yet it also works on its own. "Chicken Run" had the more convenient, but also more "storytelling" plot. Instead, this new Aardman masterpiece keeps that crazier and somehow more "isolated" feeling of the W+G shorts. Children should also enjoy it very much, especially because of the sweet rabbits (if you love cute bunnies, this is a must-see for you!!!) and because Gromit has a lot do to and really steals the show (children also love dogs... :-) ). But many jokes are thought for a more adult audience (there are even soft sexual allusions in it). The movie manages, like "Shrek 1+2" and "The Incredibles", to fulfil high level entertainment for the whole family, with adding a British and at least a little bit darker edge to the humour of American animated movies.
The animation is as expected superb, and they kept true to the Aardman style because they didn't put in too many digital effects - I realized just a few when it came to Wallace's inventions.
Finally, the score works fine in the movie, although one of the main themes definitely is "borrowed" by Randy Edelman's "Dragonheart" score.
The bad thing is: It will probably take another six years from now until we can see a new animated gem from Nick Park & Co.
Being a "Wallace and Gromit-fan", I was looking forward for this
full-length movie. Surprisingly I saw it at THE world-premiere in
Vlissingen (NL), at the Film by the Sea festival. A wonderful feeling
to be one of the first to see this very amusing and merry movie. It's
about Wallace and Gromit (whom I believe don't need an introduction)
having their own pest-control company in the city which is hosting a
giant-vegetable contest in a few days. Everyone, including an eccentric
baroness, is hoping his or her giant carrot or melon will win the
Golden carrot. Unfortunately the town is plagued by lots of hungry
rabbits. This is where W&G come in. The have their own cracking
contraptions to control these cute creatures in a human way.
It's a very funny and colorful story. Anyone who liked the three proceeding short movies of W&G (which are more than great!), will love this full-length movie. Nick Park really delivered a wonderful and original result with a great sense for humor. Like in Chicken Run, it truly amazes me how he can capture so much story and emotions in just a few frames. "Job well done, lad" ;-) Oh yeah: The music was fantastic! It really completes the ride. Enjoy!
This first (and hopefully not last) Wallace & Gromit feature lives up to expectations. There are plenty of jokes (some a bit cheeky) as well as some great tributes to past Science Fiction movies. With the barrage of awful and formulaic movies being spewed forth from Hollywood it's great to see such a great film like this that's enjoyable for almost everyone. If there is any justice it will be top of the box-office and be at least nominated for best animation at the next Oscars. The animation is wonderful; the characters are remarkably expressive and their adventures are great fun. This is one of those films that the whole family can enjoy. Charming, clever, fun and well made, what's not to enjoy?
Wallace and Gromit are the main characters in some of the best cartoons
ever crafted. The excellent mix of visual humor and claymation makes "A
Grand Day Out," "The Wrong Trousers," and also "A Close Shave" some of
the best animated footage ever put on television. Winning several
Oscars and also countless other awards, Nick Park became quite the
popular man in the U.K., yet his impact on the United States has not
been big. After the third Wallace and Gromit short, there was all this
speculation about a full-length Wallace and Gromit movie, yet for years
nothing had happened. Then in 2000 instead of a full-length Wallace and
Gromit film, we get another brilliant claymation film from Nick Park,
which was Chicken Run, which almost got nominated for best picture in
the Academy Awards. Perhaps it was the success of this film that
ultimately drove Park to finally work on a Wallace and Gromit project.
5 years later (these kinds of films do take long you know) and a lot of anticipation, Wallace and Gromit finally hits the big screen. Despite the rather weak trailers and marketing campaign, this movie delivers in so many ways. This film will be a delight for both kids and parents. With tons of adult humor hidden beneath the brilliant animation, Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit is one of the few films that perfectly manages to equally appeal to both kids and adults. This rather difficult technique is one that only Pixar has already perfected and DreamWorks has had a lot of trouble doing lately. Despite the DreamWorks logo slapped onto the poster, this film is mainly from the very creative staff of Aardman Animations.
Wallace and Gromit are first seen running a business that protects the townspeople's crops from being ruined by rabbits, which apparently had been running around wild and in great numbers lately. Their business has gotten them plenty of respect from the others living in the town because a gigantic vegetable contest was rapidly approaching and the crops needed protection. Complications arise when Wallace attempts to manipulate the rabbits into not liking vegetables and then a great eating machine is unleashed on the area. It is up to Wallace and Gromit to find the gigantic animal and stop it from eating away through gardens and also their approval from the townspeople. To add to that, Wallace wants to impress Lady Tottington, which also captured the attention of a snobby suitor by the name of Victor. Simple plot yes, but there is more than meets the eye, be prepared for a few fun surprises along the way, kind of like in the other Wallace and Gromit cartoons.
In animated films with little dialogue, it is the animation that has to set the pacing and the mood of the film. Despite requiring 5 years to produce only 85 minutes of footage, the payoff is fantastic. There is a massive amount of detail that requires more than one viewing to truly notice. Even more incredible than the detailed and nearly flawless animation is the truly unspeakable amount of visual humor put into the film. Whether it is a creatively placed shot or normal labels put into the funniest position possible, or it is the oh-so-adorable rabbits that is constantly shown in the film, most Curse of the Were-Rabbit's humor comes strictly from just watching the movie itself and catching all the references before it is too late. Just picture the movie Madagascar, except funnier much fewer pop culture references, and better animation.
Casting was great, even though in a film with not much dialogue, it was not that important. Peter Sallis yet again does a wonderful job as Wallace, even though in this movie there was no stand-out quote that can be used anytime (The Wrong Trousers: "It's the wrong trousers Gromit, and they've gone wrong!"). Ralph Fiennes does a superb job as the lead villain Victor and also Helena Bonham Carter (known as the crazy female lead in the cult hit "Fight Club") lends her lovely voice as she plays Wallace's love interest. Even though nothing could top the final chase in "The Wrong Trousers," Curse of the Ware-Rabbit did have plenty of action scenes, including one fantastically done chase scene between Gromit and Victor's evil dog. Last but not least, the rabbits really steal the show at some moments. Whether it is their cute expressions, their funny movements, or their howling, the rabbits in the film even take some of the glory from the main stars. The funniest rabbit in the movie is the "cursed" rabbit himself, to the very end of the movie he had the audience rolling in laughter.
Bottom Line: Despite not being as memorable as "The Wrong Trousers", this film is just as good and entertaining as Chicken Run. Unlike almost every movie to come out this year, the movie does not drag at all, clocking in at a short 85 minutes yet containing so much joy and fun, it will leave everyone watching it asking for more. There is very little wrong with the film; it was a pure delight to watch. This film is a total contrast of the decent yet vulgar, uncut, raw movies that have made a surprising amount of money earlier this year (40-Year-Old Virgin, Wedding Crashers, and Sin City) and for families and those who want harmless entertainment; that is a good thing. Highly recommend, this is the top animated movie to come out this year and among the best we have seen this decade. Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit: totally harmless fun from second 1 to second 5,100.
A very enjoyable film. You can see there's much more subtlety in the characters with regard to facial expressions. The voice actors did a great job, and there are some great gags, some of which are not for children, but are not overt in their adult-ness. Much more empathy for the characters in this film than in Chicken Run. Fortunately, the film is still wonderfully British, so has not suffered from Dreamworks' influence on the production. It is also good to see something hand-crafted on the big screen instead of the raft of CG animated films that usually lack a strength of script; that you could see fingerprints in the plasticine in no way detracted from the quality of the production.
What-ho! This one is jolly good. I say jolly good, ol' chap. Or should
I say "ol' bean"? My mastery of British terminology is a little dusty.
Anyway, my biker boots and I walked into this screening with no prior
viewing experience of Wallace and Gromit. I'm happy to say that my
boots and I walked out pleased to have made their acquaintance.
While not as adult-accessible as Toy Story, W & G still manages to be clever enough to provide the grown ups with a little humor that will most definitely soar over the heads of the young 'uns who are too busy guffawing at the Were-rabbit's belches to have any clue that something is amiss. I highly suggest that you pay close attention any time you see books or words on the screen because there are quick glimpses of puns that you'll miss if you aren't paying attention. My favorite is a book of monsters that refers to the Loch Ness Monster as "tourist trappus." If you've ever been known to say, "I can really relate to Kevin Federline," or if you're just illiterate then not only will you miss out on these jokes, but you probably should be spending your time learning to read instead of going to movies. Consider this a public service announcement.
The most impressive aspect about W & G is its clay animation. Thanks to the tedious process, it took FIVE YEARS to finish the film! According to the press notes, there were some days when the optimum goal was to merely accomplish 10 seconds of completed film. Folks, I sometimes have trouble finding the motivation to finish responding to a handful of emails or adding captions to pictures for my reviews (a point that is proved by a lack of pictures in this review); so I can't even imagine having the required patience for that.
I really like the rough, hands-on quality of the claymation figures. The fact that you can see fingerprints in the clay is a nice, personal touch. How can you not be impressed with clay characters that show more expression and emotion than Paul Walker and Keanu Reeves combined? The Curse of the Were-rabbit is, as director Nick Park calls it, the world's first vegetarian horror movie that should entertain both kids and adults alike. Relying on (and as a male who prides himself in his shaggy-haired, cool-bearded masculinity I hesitate to use this word) cute and (oh man, I probably shouldn't use this word either) lovable characters rather than outdated M.C. Hammer references, W & G is proof that DreamWorks can create entertaining animation when it chooses cleverness over the cheap joke.
When Wallace and Gromit burst onto the scene in their academy award
winning short, "A Grand Day Out," they created a fresh new look at
claymation. After two more shorts, Aardman's dynamic duo returned for
this thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining movie. It has an excellent
Voice cast, humorous jokes and good animation as only Aardman could do!
In this movie, Wallace and Gromit run "Anti-Pesto," a rabbit removal company. When word gets out about a "Were-Rabbit" eating all the vegetables in town, a frenzy ensues. Of course, Victor Quartermaine, the town's handsome, toupee-brandishing huntsman, wants to get his hands on the rabbit to impress the lovely Lady Tottington...but can our favorite Aardman duo save the day before chaos ensues?
The jokes, I should say, were hilarious. One point, the villain, Victor Quartermaine's, booty-crack was showing, prompting a character to cry out: "BEWARE...THE MOON!!!" Vintage Aardman!
The characters are crisp and hilarious. Our favorite Aardman team of Man and Dog entertains us as only they could do, earning them their second Oscar (remember "A Grand Day Out?"). Helena Bonham Carter was terrific as the lovely Lady Tottington, Wallace's love interest. Ralph Fiennes was especially funny and foreboding as the cunning, toupee wearing hunter Victor Quartermaine. But the one who really stole the show was the priest, whose antics proved to be some hilarious comic relief.
Hats off to Aardman for creating another Wallace and Gromit masterpiece!
There are a few aspects to Park's movies, and in particular Wallace &
Gromit, that I would say make them so great. The first is subtlety and
observation, the flagship of which is the character of Gromit. He
doesn't speak, he doesn't make any noise, all he has are his eyes,
brow, and body posture, and with these he commands the film. Park
manages to give us everything we need from this silent character
through his expression. The comedy and the emotion is conveyed through
the subtlest of movements and it works superbly well.
Watching the movie you have to be aware of the entire screen. Normally you'll be guided to things in the movies, the screen won't be cluttered too much, there won't be many things to take your eyes away from the main clue or action. Park seems to need to look the other way with his movies. He throws extra content at his audience, there's action in the background, to the side of the screen, even off screen, and there's just about always something in the foreground to catch your eye. His movies are about multiple viewing and discovery, they're layered with jokes and ancillary action.
Throughout this film there are layers of things happening on screen, jokes in the foreground maybe on a jar label and background shadows that give away action. You can imagine that for Park the movies has always been an event, and the movies he loves are ones which he wants to watch again and again. This is what shows in his movies, and in through his most beloved characters.
Then there are the bizarre and wacky inventions which Wallace make, something which is reflected in the storyline and the twists and turns of the plot, everything is bizarre and off the wall, yet it seems so perfectly normal in this world. You can imagine that inside Park is the mind of Wallace.
There's also one more thing that make these movies so unique, and that's the modelling and precise hand animation. I must admit I was concerned when I knew Dreamworks was involved in the making of this movie, and I thought that they would bring their computer animation experience to the forefront. What I was scared of was Wallace & Gromit becoming CGI entities, or at the smallest, CGI being used to clean up the feel that the modelling brought to the movie.
Not so. You can still see thumbprints and toolmarks on the characters, and far from distracting from the movie, this just adds so much real feeling to it and a feeling of physical depth to the characters and the scene on screen.
So what of the movie? Well I must say that the plot twist was something I had thought about well before the film was in the cinema and it came as no surprise, but that did not affect my enjoyment one little bit. Actually watching the twist unfold and the comic timing of the discovery and reactions was everything, and it had me just as sucked in as if it was a thriller, yet all the time I was laughing.
Watching the movie was fascinating in various ways. To see the animation completed, how wild the inventions are, how Wallace is going to get into trouble and Gromit get him out, where all the cross references are in the movie, and where all the jokes are! I must admit afterwards talking with my friends I couldn't believe how much I had missed.
There's something different in this movie than with the others, there's a new level of adult humour in here, and I don't mean rude jokes (although there are a couple that are just so British you can't help laughing), I mean jokes that simply fly over kids heads but slap adults in the face. The kind you are used to seeing come out of somewhere like Pixar. This just adds even more appeal to the movie.
Okay though, let me try and be a bit negative here. I didn't notice the voices in this movie, you know how you usually listen to the actors and see if you can recognise them? Well I was just too wrapped up in the movie to care or to notice who they were...okay, that's not negative. Let me try again. The main plot wasn't as strong and gripping as I'd expected, and I found myself being caught up in the side stories and the characters themselves...again...that's not a bad thing, the film was just so much rich entertainment.
I honestly can't think of a bad thing to say about this movie, probably the worst thing I could say is that the title sequence at the end is quite repetitive...until the final title! Really, that's the worst I can say.
The story is a lot of fun, well set-up, well written, well executed. There's lot's of fantastic characters in here, not just Wallace & Gromit. There's so much happening on screen, so many references and jokes (check out the dresses of Lady Tottingham), cheese jokes everywhere, jokes for all the family. The characters are superbly absorbing and you'll find that you've taken to them before you realise. There's just so much in this movie for everyone.
There's so much I could say and write about, but I know it will quickly turn into a backslapping exercise for Park and Aardman, it would also just turn into a series of "this bit was really funny" and "there's a bit when...", and what I would rather do is tell you that this is a superb movie, to go see it, and to experience the whole thing for yourselves. I will say though that the bunnies are excellent!
I really refused to see this movie. I refused to go with the school and
I refused to go with my parents. Just by looking at the trailer it
looked stupid, to me anyway. One of my friends wanted to take me to the
movies that day and he offered me 2 choices, "The Dukes Of Hazzard" or
"Wallace And Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit." It took me 17
minutes to decide. Time was running out. I had to choose. It came up on
the screen "Few" as in a few tickets left. By the time we had to line
up and get our ticket, only one of us could go in. I desperately wanted
Nicholas to go in to see it. But he forced me. I crossed my arms and
was very moody and disappointed that I was going in to see this
childishness. I walked in, sat in the only seat that was available and
prepared for the movie! must say I was very surprised that I sat
through that MASTERPIECE! It was amazing. I don't know what I was
complaining about. The Clay Animation was by far the most best i've
ever seen in my life. The story was brilliant. About a rabbit
disrupting and crashing a carnival that had been planned for over 500
years. Basically Anti Pest Control are protecting the people who are
competing in the Vegetable Competition. Anti Pesto known as Wallace And
Gromit (Who are in charge of this business) try to keep all the rabbits
away from the Vegetable carnival. I wont say anymore. It's just too
good to tell. I'll admit that the whole idea of a Were-Rabbit is ab-it
unbelievable and ab-it childish, but Nick Park adds substance to it
which what makes everyone love it. I mean, there wont be a 10 foot
rabbit on the loose and there definitely wont be 8 foot werewolves as
said in " Dog Soldiers." Then again, Were-Rabbits and WereWolves aren't
actual creatures. But either way, it worked out very well.
The jokes also were more grown up. The kids wont get some of the jokes. It goes way above their heads. It had a lot of British jokes in there. If you love British humor, this is the movie for you.
I also loved the cast and the voices. Everything about the movie is so incredibly well done. The direction and pacing was absolutely...FANTASTIC! I recommend this to fans of the old Wallace And Gromit shorts (And no, I haven't seen them yet), and I recommend it to fans who liked "Shrek" and "Shrek 2 and most importantly, I recommend it to the people who love Clay Animation. Cracking good movie! 10/10
WALLACE & GROMIT: THE CURSE OF THE WERE-RABBIT (2005) **** (Voices:
Peter Salis, Ralph Fiennes Helena Bonham Carter)
Fantastic Feats of Clay: Wallace & Gromit Save the Day! Crackin' Good Entertainment!
Nick Park, the creator of the animated team of Wallace & Gromit, is a genius. His painstaking art in the form of Plasitcine claymation is a unique process involving literally thousands of hours (it takes roughly an 8 hour work day to contribute 3 minutes of action to a film; this foray into feature length storytelling took 5 years!) in making his lovable master & loyal dog team take form is finally on the big screen in the duo's first full-length motion picture and it's cracklin' good (to coin a phrase from Wallace's usual reply to all things good!)
Park, who co-directed with Steve Box and co-wrote with Mark Burton and Bob Baker, sends up the horror genre in this rollickingly funny and swift paced action comedy with the geeky inventive Wallace (voiced by British vet thespian Salis) and his mute yet loyal (and sharper-minded) mutt Gromit (all furrowing eyebrows and mouth-less insouciance) have devised a service to their community: pest control ("Anti-Pesto" as they are known) for the upcoming Giant Vegetable Festival that has the entire town in the mood for all things vegetative a gigante and the biggest pesk are troublesome rabbits eating the crunchy goods. Wallace's inventive mind has created a vacuum container that is quick, efficient, and more importantly harmless to the cute vermin that plague the estate of Lady Campanula Tottington (voiced by Bonham Carter, making a fast-break to be the first lady of stop-motion animation what with her earlier turn in "Corpse Bride" a few weeks ago), who is housing the competition and is a love interest for the nerdy Wallace.
The only fly-in-the-ointment is vainglorious, bombastic loud-mouth and jerk Victor Quartermaine (voiced by Fiennes, his first attempt in the animated arts coming across as a Patrick Stewart lunged braggard with hilarious results), a badly toupeed wearing macho moron who is plotting to marry Lady Tottington for her riches while he is a chief competitor to W&G's humane attempts by resorting to his trusty guns and nasty bulldog.
To add insult to injury the duo are facing a terrible plight in the form of a huge were-rabbit (the titular monster a nice nod to both Universal and Hammer horror flicks) that is terrorizing the village and devouring every veggie in sight. The two set out to trap and dispose of the creature but there is more than meets the eye as things progress.
Relentlessly funny and with such amazing elastic, and kinetic energy to his wonderful clay counterparts, Park and Box have created a truly magical and highly entertaining film with so much amazingly detailed production design to their little world that it may take more than one screening to absorb just how much effort in their blood, sweat and tears have gone into making this instant classic for children of all ages.
Wallace, the cheese loving balding inventor, could easily be Homer Simpson's UK cousin with his rotund body and constant knack for getting things wrong while attempting to do the right thing; his heart is in the right place but his head is in the clouds. His sweet crush for Lady Tottington (resembling a pre-plastic surgery Carol Burnett) who is a head taller than our hero will perhaps remind those of their first unrequited love with a smile of awkward admission. His Rube Goldberg-like gift for making the complicated into ease is inspired lunacy that fans will recall from the earlier shorter films "The Wrong Trousers", "A Close Shave" and "A Grand Day Out".
But it is in my opinion the wise, silent and long-suffering Gromit, his poached egg eyes of slow-burns and disbelief at what is transpiring, is one of the best animated characters ever created with such an amazing arsenal of exasperated, mouthless expressions and subtle nuances that most live-action actors would kill to accomplish in the attempt of conveying dismay, concern, grief, genuine surprise and relief. His final chase a signature of the immensely popular comic team is ingeniously set and quickly improvised especially his literal dog-fight with the equally soundless bulldog with tenacity, wit and a Chuck Jones fueled smartness that would have Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger green with envy.
Wallace and Gromit match the best of Laurel & Hardy, Abbott & Costello and any other classic comedy team that comes to mind; here's hoping their longevity continues on screen for just as long as their predecessors. The waiting is most eager.
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