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CHICKEN LITTLE

Review by Chastity Campbell

Voiced By: Zach Braff, Joan Cusack, Garry Marshall, Don Knotts, Patrick Stewart, Steve Zahn, Adam West
Director: Mark Dindal
Video: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound
Studio: Disney/Buena Vista
Features: See Review
Length: 81 Minutes
Release Date: March 21, 2006

“Ladies and Gentlemen, I won’t sugarcoat it; I’ve seen road kill with better reflexes!”

Film ****

I love kids’ movies, and never tire of watching films like Disney’s Beauty & The Beast, The Little Mermaid and The Lion King over and over.  So I jumped at the opportunity to review Chicken Little when I was given the chance, and I’m glad that I did!

Disney has managed once again to take a seemingly simple story, and fill it with positive messages that will benefit anyone who has a chance to watch it.

The sky is falling, according to Chicken Little.  His proclamation has the entire town of Oakey Oaks is in a panic until his father claims it was only an Acorn that fell out of a tree and conked his son on the head.

A year has passed since that fateful day in the town bell tower and the little chicken is picked on and harassed by his classmates, while being ostracized by the townsfolk.  His father wants everyone to forget what happened and let them live their lives in relative piece and quiet.  However, when another piece of the sky falls it will be up to Chicken Little and his friends to piece together this mystery and save the town of Oakey, Oaks. 

The people behind the magic at Disney are masters at weaving complex emotional issues into fun, and family friendly entertainment.   The film is based around a simple concept: a son longing for his father’s approval, and a father wanting to believe in and be proud of his son.  Disney is able to mix this kind of emotional turmoil with hilarious dialogue, and then wholesome family entertainment happens!  It’s a novel concept!  

In the past Disney has mostly chosen unknown people to voice their characters, leaving the film itself to be the star.  However, in recent years they have come to the conclusion that whoever is hot in Hollywood will help their film climb to the top of the charts.  This film is literally loaded with A-List stars. 

Zach Braff, whom I love to watch on Scrubs, is the voice of Chicken Little.   Garry Marshall lends his gravely voice to the little chicken’s dad, and Joan Cusack is adorable as Ugly Duckling!

I found myself watching the cartoon characters to see if they worked any of the normal acting quirks of the voice stars into the film.  Sure enough, when Chicken Little kisses Ugly Duckling, her foot pops!  Anyone familiar with Disney’s Princess Diaries will know that is a Gary Marshall thing!

Also, Joan Cusack has a patented (or it should be patented) noise she makes when she’s disgusted with something.  Each time Ugly Duckling would get disgusted I had no trouble picturing the facial expressions Joan would make.

I really love family friendly movies that everyone in your house can sit down and enjoy.  You can learn so much from these cute and quirky films, which means the whole family gets more than just the entertainment value from these DVDs!

If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to see this movie, then you need to stop what you are doing, head out and pick it up today!  This is definitely a MUST HAVE DVD!

Video ****

The video quality of cartoons has been enhanced dramatically with the advent of modern digital animation technology.  I am extremely impressed with the visual quality of this DVD.  The 1.78:1 Anamorphic, presentation of this DVD was absolutely beautiful.  From the moment you pop this DVD into your player you will be inundated with stunning visual quality, and bold colors that leap off the screen. 

Audio ****

Disney excels at many things, and I am glad to say that Audio is one of them. The 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround was really nice on this one.  Everything resonated around the room with a very rich and bold sound.  The character voices blended very well with the background music and the levels remained constant throughout.

Features ***

This chicken coup is overloaded with extras for you to peck through!

There are deleted scenes that the kids will definitely love, along with a featurette titled “Hatching Chicken Little.”

The “Where’s Fish” interactive game is really for kids, but adults can play along too. 

Moving on to the musical portion of this DVD, you have the option of watching the Cheetah Girls and Barenaked Ladies music videos.  However, if you’d rather be part of the singing action rather than watching it, just click on the Karaoke Sing Along and find out if you’ve got what it takes to be the next America Id…oops, wrong show!!

Summary: 

Family fun and entertainment held together with awesome video and audio mean you get more cluck for your buck with this chicken!  Don’t foul up your DVD collection with imitations!  Grab the real Chicken Little on DVD today!

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