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Free Birds (2013)

PG  |   |  Animation, Adventure, Comedy  |  1 November 2013 (USA)
5.9
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 16,002 users   Metascore: 38/100
Reviews: 66 user | 116 critic | 27 from Metacritic.com

Two turkeys from opposite sides of the tracks must put aside their differences and team up to travel back in time to change the course of history - and get turkey off the holiday menu for good.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Reggie (voice)
...
Jake (voice)
...
Jenny (voice)
...
S.T.E.V.E. (voice)
...
Myles Standish (voice)
...
Chief Broadbeak (voice)
...
...
Ranger / Leatherbeak / President / Hazmats / Additional Voice Talent (voice)
...
...
Amos (voice)
Jeff Biancalana ...
General Sagan / Hazmats / Additional Voice Talent (voice)
Danny Carey ...
Danny (voice)
...
Narrator / Alejandro (voice)
...
Chief Massasoit (voice)
...
Pilgrim Woman (voice)
Edit

Storyline

After years of fruitless warning of his farmyard brethren of the coming Thanksgiving doom, Reggie the Turkey finds himself spared as the annual Pardoned Turkey. However, Reggie's easy life is disrupted by Jake, a fanatic turkey who drags him along with the insane idea of going back in time to make sure turkeys are not part of the first Thanksgiving. Through foolhardiness and luck, the pair manage to take an experimental time machine to do just that. Now in 1621 at the Plymouth colony, Reggie and Jake find themselves in the middle of a turkey clan's struggle for survival. In doing so, their preconceptions of the world and themselves are challenged forever in a conflict from which the world will never be the same. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Changing the main course of history See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some action/peril and rude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 November 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Turkeys  »

Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$15,805,237 (USA) (1 November 2013)

Gross:

$55,747,724 (USA) (14 March 2014)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the end Jake is carrying a chicken and a duck and warns the turkeys about a Turducken. A turducken is a boneless chicken stuffed in a duck that is stuffed in a turkey. See more »

Goofs

At around 27mins we see Captain Standish. He has a wooden match in his mouth. This scene takes place in 1621, 200 years before friction matches were invented in the mid to late 1820's. See more »

Quotes

Jake: Goodbyes are just hellos blowing across the wind until our paths intersect once again.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with a tongue-in-cheek disclaimer stating: "The following film is a work of fiction. It is loosely based on historical events and is, in no way, meant to be historically accurate. Except for the part about the talking turkeys. That part is totally real." See more »

Connections

References Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

How You Like Me Now?
(uncredited)
Performed by The Heavy
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Cinematic tryptophan!! (**)

It's important to preface this review with two things. First, I gave my child the choice of which movie he wanted to see between this and "Ender's Game". Without skipping a beat, he said "FREE BIRDS!". Also, it bears mentioning that I'm not a fan of vocal leads Owen Wilson OR Woody Harrelson, and I actively try to avoid seeing movies they're in. Sometimes it's unavoidable, like seeing "Wag the Dog" and having Woody surprise me with his presence. Keeping these things in mind, I didn't think there would be much to whet my appetite; truth be told, there isn't a great deal here to enjoy for kids or adults, but at least I can say that I didn't abhor the experience, and it's family friendly. If that does anything for you.

The idea is that turkeys are people, too. Yep. One turkey (Owen Wilson), who is 'different than all the others' (hence his purple visage), manages to become the one turkey the president pardons. The first daughter keeps him as a pet, and in the process, he orders pizza, watches telenovelas, and all while the humans are cool with the apparent personification of the turkey. The powerful turkey does not raise any red flags with humans of the present day, an interesting fact when contrasted with the humans from the past in the SAME MOVIE.

Did I say humans of the past? I did! That's right, our hero turkey meets another powerful turkey (Harrelson), who has one goal in mind- travel back in time to get turkeys off the thanksgiving menu. This other powerful turkey has been able to (without opposable thumbs): infiltrate top-secret government plans on time-travel research, get past the secret service, defy physics and get into the time-travel 'egg', etc, and SUCCEEDS. Adding to the silliness is the fact that the film shows us that humans can't understand the gobbles of turkeys (obviously), but the time capsule (with a navigation system voiced by George Takei) understands the turkeys perfectly (of course). I'm willing to suspend disbelief for most animated films, but this film takes complicated subjects and plays with them so lazily I couldn't help but get perturbed.

Once our 'hero turkeys' reach the past and the Plymouth settlement, the film makes the most sense, and has the most fun. The interaction among the film's main characters, while standard fare, makes the most sense, and provides a couple of laughs. Again, it's nothing new, though. The most damning representation of the value of this film was in the reaction of my child, though, who seemed disinterested, and in fact, ready to nap about an hour into the film during the colonial scenes.

The film's co-writer and producer, Scott Mosier, is a frequent collaborator of Kevin Smith. My problem with all of Smith's movies has been the laziness of the script to not expound on a good original idea. While it's not ultimately his responsibility, I sense the same thing with this film from Mosier and crew. It's not terrible, but the original, silly idea of altering the future of turkeys is unfortunately extrapolated over 90 minutes of typical character development, confounding science, and nonsensical decision-making by the humans in the film, who supposedly have much larger brains/brain capacity. I certainly didn't feel compelled to think, laugh, or enjoy myself for most of the film.


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