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Joey Lauren Adams,
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Amusing but feels like it exists because it has to rather because it should
Having somehow scavenged a video camera from the local community, racoon RJ works with the porcupine children to produce a candid nature video. However this "nature video" seems to be nothing more than a series of pranks being played on squirrel Hammy with a box of boomerangs and some snacks.
There is an enjoyable trend with Pixar-style animations to have short films shown before the main film or put onto the DVD as extras. Partly it helps to make the product feel more worth while because the films are often quite short but mainly I enjoy the trend because the shorts are often very funny and entertaining. However as the marketplace becomes more heavily populated with "lesser" product (and lets be honest there are some films recently that have looked like Toy Story but are far from the humour and intelligence thereof) the short films also reduce in quality. I suspect part of this is the same thing that Over the Hedge suffered from, which was the idea that if it just does what the rest of the genre is doing then everything will work out.
Like Over the Hedge, this short film has amusing moments but the overall product doesn't feel that inspired. The material suggests a clever spoof of the "punked" style programmes but really it does little with the idea other than borrow the you-tube camera style of teenagers setting up their friends. The gags are funny but not all that inspired and the conclusion just sees it fade out with the best material several minutes past. It was good that the main voices from the cast were involved but the lack of strong material is the thing that killed it for me.
Of course it is amusing and it was an welcome addition to the DVD but I did struggle to shake the feeling that it existed because the traditions of the genre required it to exist rather than because someone had a really good idea for a short film that they then decided to make.
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