Monday, December 12, 2011


Cast: Jason Lee, David Cross, Jenny Slate, Justin Long, Matthew Gray Gubler, Jesse McCartney, Amy Poehler, Anna Faris and Christina Applegate
Director: Mike Mitchell
Screenplay: Johnathan Aibel and Glenn Berger
Time: 87 mins
Rating: * * (out of 4)

The Chipettes (left) and Dave (Jason Lee, hugging the mike)

PREAMBLE: Joining The Muppets, Puss In Boots, Happy Feet 2 and Arthur Christmas in the kiddie fare stakes this festive season is the third instalment of Alvin And The Chipmunks. Subtitled Chipwrecked, you can safely guess that the squeaky rodents are gonna be castaways on some island and...

I am not a fan of these furry pests (yes, they can be annoying) and just like in the 2009's Squeakquel, there are six of them here, including the Chipettes, the female singing trio who can also dance up a storm. Man, those Chipettes are made to look so cute that we can blush just watching them.

THE PESTS: Simon, Alvin and Theodore

SYNOPSIS: Alvin and his brothers Theodore and Simon are on an ocean cruise with their 'dad' Dave (Jason Lee) and girl group the Chipettes. Alvin, as expected, gets into more mischief like hijacking the ship’s intercom and gatecrashing into the casino, going hang-gliding and getting his family, including 'Uncle Ian' (David Cross), stranded on a deserted island.

HITS & MISSES: On the plus side, it is good to see some character development in that Alvin (voice of Justin Long) learns to be more matured just as Dave learns to let go a bit. I also like the way the writers Johnathan Aibel and Glenn Berger allude to Tom Hanks' Cast Away in its subplot about Zoe (Jenny Slate) a girl who has somehow managed to survive for 10 years alone on the island. Unlike the previous outings, there is less singing and more 'munk action', especially involving a 'Rambo-styled' French alter ego that grips Simon.

On the downside, the flaws of the previous films are repeated here. The plot is predictable, badly contrived, full of pot-holes and loose ends that even the kids will notice. Like, how do the Chipmunks make a raft, complete with a sail and helm in such a short time? How do the Chipettes dance with humans without getting trampled? etc. Indeed, there's loads of cuteness but not enough hearty laughs.

THE LOWDOWN: For kids below five.


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