After “Home On The Range” came out in 2004 as the last hand drawn animated movie until “The Princess And The Frog,” Disney produced a computer animated movie starring Zach Braff as “Chicken Little.”
Chicken Little was released in 2005. (same year Madagascar came out) It received negative reviews from critics. Despite horrible reactions, it managed to make enough money at the box office. Chicken Little became Disney’s worst (if not the worst) animated film. A sequel never came into fruition, due to negative responses from pure Disney fans. After the movie came out, Chicken Little appeared as a summon character in “Kingdom Hearts II” which is the only thing better than his horrendous movie.
“Raya And The Last Dragon” is out in theaters and streaming on Disney Plus. “Encanto” will be released this Thanksgiving. Before “Cruella” comes out starring one of my favorite actresses Emma Stone, I want to share my thoughts on Chicken Little if it’s truly Disney’s despised animated movie.
Today’s review contains SPOILERS. If you’re somewhat interested in this movie, watch it first. If not, read at your own risk.
Stable & Unstable Elements
Stable: Adam West makes a voiceover cameo as an actor playing Chicken in a movie loosely based on his life.
The only joke that made me laugh is Runt randomly saying “Darth Vader’s Luke’s father!” Ok Chicken Little, you win this round for giving me a chuckle. Speaking of “Star Wars,” “Revenge Of The Sith” came out in 2005.
The Aliens’ ships remind me of The Machines from “The Matrix Trilogy” & Steven Spielberg’s “War Of The Worlds.” The Wachowskis known for creating The Matrix films, wrote an adaptation of Alan Moore’s “V For Vendetta” and War Of The Worlds both came out in 2005.
When The Aliens wreck havoc, REM’s “It’s The End Of The World” plays in the background. REM’s tune also played in the opening scene from one of my favorite movies of all time, “Independence Day.”
Unstable: Zach Braff seems like an odd choice voicing the titular character. He doesn’t sound like a kid. I think of his role as J.D. from “Scrubs” in chicken form. His only good voiceover performance is Finley from “Oz The Great And Powerful.”
Joan Cusack, Steve Zahn, Amy Sedaris, Patrick Stewart, Wallace Shawn & the late Don Knotts didn’t do so well for their voiceover performances. Maybe they needed a paycheck to cover up their bills.
Mark Dindal (Cats Don’t Dance, The Emperor’s New Groove) failed to make a cohesive narrative.
Disney first computer animated movie since “Dinosaur” doesn’t hold up so well. Animation belongs in an any cheap direct-to-video Disney sequels. The video game based on Chicken Little has legit animation. Heck, even “Ratchet & Clank” has a better presentation.
Jokes are unfunny. Except for one Star Wars reference.
The pre-opening credits has no idea what theme they should start the film. What you’re about to see is gonna suck.
Chicken’s two friends have unoriginal names just for the sake of unfunny jokes. A pig is named Runt Of The Litter & a goldfish wearing a scuba helmet is named Fish Out Of Water. In the words of Wade Wilson/Deadpool, “Well that’s just lazy writing.”
Gary Marshall’s character Buck Cluck is perhaps the worst character of this movie. He only cares about himself instead of his son’s well being ignoring the fact he’s disregarded by society. And I thought Lord Beckett from “Pirates Of The Caribbean” is the only unsympathetic character in Disney history. Alec Baldwin is a better a-hole father calling Ireland “a selfish little pig.” He’s a butthole in real life.
Besides Buck, everybody except Ugly Duckling Runt & Fish Out Of Water are buttholes. Is their society one step closer to Gilead (a country controlled by rapists) from “The Handmaid’s Tale?”
I never cared about a father and son relationship. I was never invested. Darth Vader & Luke Skywalker have a better father and son relationship.
A random pop culture reference with Fish Out Of Water spoofing King Kong’s battle with planes. It doesn’t connect to the plot whatsoever. It’s as if Aaron Seltzer & Jason Friedberg (Seltzerberg for short) wrote this pointless parody. Abby & Runt have fun playing karaoke singing the Spice Girls song, “Wannabe.” First of all, it has nothing to do with the plot. Second, “Small Soldiers” did it better when the song was played during an action scene.
Chicken & his friend Abby have a forced relationship when the former kisses the latter. Their chemistry never fleshed out like two good friends slowly building a relationship. Disney is notorious instantly pairing two people since “Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs.” If this were real life, it’ll take weeks or months for two individuals to get to know one another before a relationship is fully established. Could be utterly disgusting if Chicken & Abby “do it” like that one scene with another Abby from “The Last Of Us Part II.”
Actual footage from “Raiders Of The Lost Ark” is played in a movie theater. Near the end of the film, Chicken gets a movie loosely based on his life. Why the heck is Harrison Ford (not an animated animal) featured in footage as Indiana Jones? I have a theory animals turned against humanity as their own version of Skynet from “The Terminator” series.
After local bully Foxy Loxy is zapped by the aliens, she comes back singing nothing but songs. Just because you resurrect a character behaving differently, doesn’t mean it’s a sign of Character Development. If you want Foxy to quit her bullying days, you have to make her say she’s sorry for tormenting Chicken.
Runt immediately begins a relationship with Foxy. They never shared a conversation or two. To put salt in the wound, they sing and dance to “Elton John’s “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” alongside The Cast during The End Credits. Remember The End Credits from “Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2” with The Cast dancing? It’s because Star-Lord & Gamora have better chemistry. Their allies Rocket, Groot, Drax, Nebula, Mantis & Yondu were dancing, because each one forms a close bond. Runt & Foxy however, lack a close bond. At least the animated movie “Robots” ended with a dance party, because most of the characters form a connection. Don’t forget “Madagascar” and most DreamWorks animated movies often ends with a dance party.
The Final Verdict: F, FOR FAKER!
Like many critics, Chicken Little is by far the worst animated movie by Disney. Every single flaw I’ve listed, indicates why it’s worse than the original versions of “Cinderella,” “Lady And The Tramp,” & “Sleeping Beauty.” That’s right I think the aforementioned three are stinkers. I wrote a review of each one. I’m tired of pretending they’re great. If you’re a pure Disney fan, skip Chicken Little. Watch a real animal themed movie like “Robin Hood” or “Zootopia.”
One thought on “Flashback Review: Chicken Little”
I can’t say I’m surprised by the F rating. Chicken Little is universally seen as Disney’s worst animated film.