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Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked.

3/10

Stars: Jason Lee, David Cross, Jenny Slate, Justin Long, Matthew Gray Gubler, Jesse McCartney, Amy Poehler, Anna Faris, Christina Applegate

Director: Mike Mitchell

What if James Stewart had had a rifle to hand?.

He could have turned homicidal himself and shot Ross Bagdasarian who created the singing chipmunks and saved adults from having to suffer the squeaking rodentsí third big screen outing. In fairness, which is really difficult after sitting through director Mitchellís movie, young kids who enjoy silly slapstick and the sight of adults consistently making idiots of themselves (a key factor in the enjoyment of childrenís films) might not mind the daft antics on display. Accompanying adults can take comfort in the fact that age sometimes dampens their hearing of higher notes, which is no bad thing when the Chipmunks and Chipettes too frequently burst into their high pitched squeaking songs.

The plot is simple: Chipmunk guardian/surrogate parent Lee takes his charges on a voyage on a luxury cruise liner where they pour suntan lotion on the deck and then skate on it, pour hot soup into Leeís lap and generally making nuisances of themselves before ending up on a desert island with a mysterious woman, a vicious volcano and a loathsome former record executive dressed as a giant chicken. In truth, a giant turkey would have been more to the point.

But logic is hardly the point. What matters are opportunities, good bad and dire to allow the CGI created creatures to run amok which they do whenever possible.

Lee does what he needs to do (acting isnít really involved), the rodent choir is voiced with vigour and the good news such as it is that itís only 87 minutes long although, perfectly proving Einsteinís Theory of Relativity, it seemed much, much longer.

Alan Frank

USA 2011. UK Distributor: 20th Century Fox. Colour by deluxe.
87 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: U.

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

Review date: 23 Dec 2011