Skip to main content
#
The Independent Critic

STARRING
Jeff Daniels, Patrick Warburton, Cheryl Hines, Kristin Chenoweth
DIRECTED BY
Kirk De Micco
SCREENPLAY
Kirk De Micco, Simon Goltsman
MPAA RATING
Rated G
RUNNING TIME
82 Mins
DISTRIBUTED BY
20th Century Fox

 "Space Chimps" Review 
Facebook
Twitter
Reddit
LinkedIn
Pinterest
MySpace
Add to favorites
Email
 
Pixar good.

Vanguard bad.

Okay, okay. That's not entirely true. Pixar is freaking awesome, while Vanguard Animation has, after a mere three feature films, managed to become the definition of cinematic mediocrity.

"Space Chimps" doesn't really suck. It's not good. It's not bad. It just exists. The problem is that it exists in a cinematic environment in which it is surrounded by the likes of the brilliant "Wall-E" and even the more modest but entertaining "Kung-Fu Panda."

The only thing entertaining about "Space Chimps" is an entertaining and spirited performance by Kristin Chenoweth ("RV") as Kilowatt, a quirky and adorable alien creature who is, unfortunately, a supporting player for these festivities.

Ham III (Andy Samberg, "Hot Rod") is an under-achieving circus chimp whose genetics would seem to indicate he could have been so much more. His late grandfather was the first chimp in space (Chimps went before humans, ya know?) and, because of this genetic link, a senator (Stanley Tucci) hunts Ham down to convince him to join two other serious space chimps (Patrick Warburton and Cheryl Hines) to space.

Eventually, Ham relents and, of course, nothing goes as planned leading to a grand, but not so entertaining, effort to save the undiscovered planet from an evil dictator (Jeff Daniels).

Vanguard Animation has also given us the under-achieving "Happily N'Ever After" and "Valiant," films that gained a bit of notoriety for their retro style but not much else.

The same is largely true here. "Space Chimps" is not cutting edge animation. In fact, the vast majority of folks are going to consider it not so much retro as simply sub-par.

"Space Chimps" features primitive animation, lame jokes abd disturbingly inadequate tech work including easily noticeable lip-syncing that doesn't match the animation.

Despite its sub-par animation and tech credits, "Space Chimps" does manage to avoid being a complete disaster and, largely owing to the voiceover work of Chenoweth and Daniels' turn as the vil dictator, "Space Chimps" is occasionally endearing and, by the end, a film that may very well entertain smaller children. One must hope, however, that these same small children don't catch on to the film's occasional double entendre, a surprising fact given the film's G-rating.

Easily the weakest of Summer 2008's animated entries, "Space Chimps" is likely headed for a brief trip through wide-release followed by a more successful life on home video.
 
 

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic

    The 50/50 x 2020 Pledge

    The Independent Critic is proud to support Indy-based Heartland Film by committing to the 50/50 x 2020 Pledge - By the end of the year 2020, The Independent Critic will achieve gender parity in its reviews of both shorts and feature films. Furthermore, The Independent Critic also pledges support for the Ruderman Family Foundation's call for authentic representation of people with disabilities in film and actively commits to leverage its journalistic influence to effect genuine change in the film industry by calling for and actively promoting authentic and inclusive casting and hiring of people with disabilities.

    our twitterour facebook page pintrestlinkdin

    The Independent Critic © 2008 - 2020