Noth­ing chip­per about this load of chip­munk

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - MOVIES -

MIKE Mitchell’s seem­ingly wit­less sec­ond se­quel to the 2007 part-an­i­mated hit, de­rived from a bit of ’50s pop-cul­ture de­bris, Alvin and The Chipmunks: Chip­wrecked bears a sur­pris­ing re­sem­blance to JeanLuc Go­dard’s Film So­cial­isme. It’s not only the cruise ship set­ting, but also a bla­tant con­tempt for con­ven­tional nar­ra­tive and Amer­i­can cul­ture. (The open­ing shot is so shame­less, it ends up mock­ing Hol­ly­wood prod­uct place­ment.) Go­dard-style sub­ti­tles might ac­tu­ally make it pos­si­ble to oc­ca­sion­ally un­der­stand what the Chipmunks and the Chip­pettes are say­ing. Or pos­si­bly ex­plain why hu­man fe­male lead Jenny Slate some­times breaks into a ran­dom French ac­cent while mug­ging her way through a sen­tence. By this point, the movie has switched to chan­nelling Luis Bunuel’s Robin­son Cru­soe – that is, if Bunuel had thought of throw­ing in ref­er­ences to Cast Away, Top Hat and, so help me, Cap­tain Corelli’s Man­dolin, along with the oc­ca­sional rap num­ber. You usu­ally have to watch an Adam San­dler movie to see some­thing as in­com­pe­tently made as Alvin and The Chipmunks. It couldn’t have been easy for Ja­son Lee to keep a straight face while say­ing: ‘‘I’m not in this for the money.’’

– LOU LU­MENICK

Alvin and The Chipmunks: Chip­wrecked opens on Sun­day (New Year’s day).

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