Saturday, April 2, 2011

'Hop' Movie Review

Title: Hop

Director: Tim Hill (’Alvin and the Chipmunks’)

Starring: James Marsden, Russell Brand (voice), Kaley Cuoco (’The Big Bang Theory’), Hugh Laurie (voice), Hank Azaria (voice)

Review Written by: Karen Benardello

While Santa Claus has widely been the king of holiday movies, the Easter Bunny is hoping to jump into people’s hearts in the new live-action/CGI movie ‘Hop.’ While not much about the movie’s plot-line was revealed by its studio Relativity Media during its promotional period and adults may come to think of it as purely a children’s film as a result, ‘Hop’ ultimately proves animated characters and movies can indeed provide important messages; everyone, including the Easter Bunny, strives to do what they love while making other people happy.

‘Hop’ follows teenage rabbit E.B. (voiced by Russell Brand) as he prepares to take over the position of the Easter Bunny from his father, Mr. Bunny (voiced by Hugh Laurie). However, E.B. doesn’t like the pressure that is placed on him, as he fears that he will disappoint his father and the children around the world by not being able to deliver all of the Easter candy on time. So he leaves his home on Easter Island to go to Hollywood to instead pursue his dream of becoming a famous drummer.

During his first night in Hollywood, E.B. is hit by Fred O’Hare (played by James Marsden), who is driving to Beverly Hills to house-sit for the boss of his sister Samantha (portrayed by Kaley Cuoco). E.B. manipulates his way into staying with Fred, but ultimately just causes trouble for him. While Fred is on a job interview, for example, E.B. realizes that his father sent his bodyguards, the Pink Berets, to Hollywood to bring him home. Mr. Bunny wants E.B. to return to Easter Island to not only take over his destined job, but to also help suppress the revolt that’s being led by Easter Chick Carlos (voiced by Hank Azaria).

Relativity Media definitely made the right decision in hiring director Tim Hill to helm the movie. Having experience in the live-action/CGI family genre before, including directing ‘Muppets from Space’ and ‘Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties,’ Hill was able to incorporate striking, realistic animation with E.B., Mr. Bunny and the rest of Easter Island into ‘Hop.’ Children and even adults will likely wish they could visit Easter Island, as Hill created vibrant, colorful backgrounds that prove that not all movies need 3D technology for the action and sets to pop out at the audience. Even while watching the scenes unfold in Hollywood, audiences will also surely forget that the rabbits are CGI, as they truly look realistic.

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