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Alpha & Omega


Stars: Voices: Justin Long, Hayden Panettiere, Dennis Hopper, Danny Glover, Larry Miller, Eric Price, Vicki Lewis, Chris Carmack, Kevin Sussman, Brian Donovan, Christina Ricci

Director: Anthony Bell, Ben Gluck

Duck! It’s 3D.

Actually, this amiable if underpowered and ultimately unmemorable children’s picture actually does feature a duck, who caddy’s for a golfing goose. And also an opening shot of a snow covered mountain that resembles a scrawled Paramount logo minus its garland of stars.

What you get, in 3D but to no great added visual effect, is a vulpine reworking of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ with the hairy lovers played by the eponymous strong and serious Alpha who is a vixenish vixen and Humphrey as her fun-loving omega-rated star crossed lover.

When they are abducted from their familiar surrounding of Jasper National Park in Canada and relocated to Darkest Idaho they are forced to travel hundreds of miles and through a hardly inspiring plot to reach home again and of course, true love strikes. (Strangely, the wolves don’t wolf whistle, which you would think was mandatory in the circumstances).

Undemanding youngsters will find the end product bearable. Animals sing and do pratfalls, there’s plenty of action including a caribou stampede, and a poo joke and mooning caribous should at least raise a smile or two – but accompanying adults might be best served by taking a flashlight and a good book to pass the time.

The animation is effective without being striking and the vocal casting (Long and Panettiere are fine as the romantic leads; the film is posthumously dedicated in memory of Hopper) works well enough.

Alan Frank

USA/India 2010. UK Distributor: Lionsgate. Colour.
87 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: U.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 21 Oct 2010