More on IMDB

Buy the DVD at Amazon

Complete A-Z list

Over the Hedge


Stars: (voices of) Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, William Shatner, Nick Nolte, Thomas Haden Church, Allison Janney

Director: Tim Johnson, Karey Kirkpatrick

Fancy a spot of mild satire with a lovable bunch of animals? This cute, funny and child-friendly CGI cartoon from the DreamWorks stable is very much in Ice Age mould: it even has a manic squirrel among its leading characters.

Scavenging raccoon RJ (Willis) steals a hibernating bear's (Nolte) winter store and packs it sky-high, only to improbably toddle back for a packet of crisps in the bear's pocket (OK, we know bears don't have pockets, but they do in cartoons; just think kangaroo).

The grumpy grizzly inevitably wakes up and, after letting the stash of food career off a cliff, RJ finds himself with a week to make good on the goodies and assuage the bear's wrath.

Landing in the lap of a ready-made family - two possums (one voiced by Shatner), a turtle (the voice of caution), five porcupines, a skunk and the aforementioned squirrel - RJ leads them in food raids on a new human estate on the other side of a high hedge that now divides the woodlands from suburbia.

There are lots of vibrant characters and killer lines in the romp that follows, as the turtle (Shandling) - 'I'm naturally tentative. there are places in my shell I haven't been' - is dragged along on missions he feels are all too impossible. Especially when they encounter a venomous - and desperate - housewife (Janney), a 'verminator' (Haden Church) and a Persian cat whom the skunk attempts to seduce. Shades of Pepe Le Pew!

Nothing deep over this hedge - just non-stop fun.

David Quinlan

USA 2006. UK Distributor: UIP (DreamWorks). Technicolor.
84 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: U.

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

Review date: 09 Jul 2006