Chicken Run

Bomb Rating: 

You have to figure that anybody who makes his living playing with clay can't be all that well in the head, so it's no surprise that Nick ("Wallace and Gromit") Park couldn't come up with an original story and had to steal one from "The Great Escape." And then there's the "17" on the chicken coop of Ginger (voice of Julia Sawalha), which anybody who knows anything about film instantly recognizes from "Stalag 17."

Mr. Tweedy (Tony Haygarth) runs the farm with his domineering wife, Mrs. Tweedy (Miranda Richardson). It's Ginger's dream to escape, so when a "flying" rooster named Rocky (Mel Gibson) comes sailing into the coop, her dream seems closer to reality. Unfortunately, time is running out for her and the other chickens, as Mrs. Tweedy has her own dreams -- of turning her profitless chickens into profitable chicken pies.

The second I heard Mel Gibson's voice, I thought I was going to be sick. I'm so tired of Mel and his fake sounding American accent and knowing he's got his wife laying more kids than a chicken lays eggs. I will say this for Mel, though: At least you can understand what he's saying.

I realize Park is British and all, but didn't he or somebody at Dreamworks consider the kind of chaos they were going to create with all those heavy British accents and slang? They might as well have injected every kid under five with a liter of sucrose, because there's nothing worse than a chicken with a British accent when it comes to screaming American children. And since most of their parents aren't smart enough to know not to bring their kids to a theater in the first place, it's not exactly like they were getting any of it, either. This filmgoing experience more closely resembled being trapped in a nursery full of starving infants than anything else.

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