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Genre: CG Animation
Starring: Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, Wanda Sykes, William Shatner, Avril Lavigne, Catherine O'Hara, Eugene Levy, Nick Nolte, Thomas Haden Church, Omid Djalili
Director: Tim Johnson and Karey Kirkpatrick
Rating: G
Year Made: 2006



- Commentary by directors Tim Johnson and Karey Kirkpatrick and producer Bonnie Arnold
- Critter 411
- Hammy’s Boomerang Adventure
- Backyard Obstacle Course
- Behind the Hedge
- Meet the Cast
- The technology of Over the Hedge
- Verm-Tech Infomercia
- Jingle Burps
- Weblinks
- Galleries
- Trailers
- Printables



Languages: English, Thai, Mandarin
Subtitles: English, Thai, Cantonese, Mandarin, Indonesian (Bahasa)
Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time: 1 hr 36 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: HVN Berjaya




Traveling raccoon con artist, RJ (Willis), arrives in a woods outside a human city in the Midwest, excited about the wonders that living near humans can bring hungry animals. What he finds, however, is an Amish-like community that is deathly afraid of humans, after their leader, Vern the tortoise (Shandling), has an encounter with human boys that terrifies him. Encouraged by RJ, however, the animals slowly venture over the hedge that separates them from the brand new suburban development that appeared over the winter while they were sleeping, and what RJ shows them is a whole new world where humans leave tin cans full of fish and other food in big canisters, ripe for the taking. As they get closer and closer to humans, however, their comfortable lives in the woods appears to be threatened...


Thanks to technological advancements, animated features are have progressed from sing-and-dance 2-D musicals (these were very popular in the 1980s), to pop culture 3-D satires filled with catchy pop songs (these are the “in” things now).

In other words, the developments in story and contents have evolved with the vast improvements in technology. At the rate things are going, it is almost possible that animated features can go to places infinity and beyond.

However, to be a winner, not only should the animated feature be visually stunning, the story should have heart as well. This simple logic may be cliché and overused, but naming a truly successful animated movie with the two elements in place can be quite a feat.

In this animated feature adapted from a comic book, a group of very cute animals (yes, they always work) wake up from hibernation and realize that their familiar forest surroundings are gone, and a hedge has suddenly popped out of nowhere.

They were almost about to just adapt to the change when a raccoon appears and advises them to go over the hedge to steal food from the humans. Never had the animals such a choice, so everything goes into frenzy.

Beneath this tale are themes of consumerism, selfishness and the need to belong to a group. No doubt these get translated very well on screen, but they eventually get lost in a technical extravaganza of computer generated special effects.

Not that we are complaining though, because the 83-minute movie does provide a lot of fun, with easy-to-understand jokes and cuddly critters that no one can resist finding them cute. There are at least two laugh-out-loud moments that had we thought were simply brilliant.

The voice actors are a hoot to listen to as well. The all-star cast includes Bruce Willis, William Shatner, Nick Nolte, Avril Lavigne and the hilarious Steve Carell.

We seem to be focusing more on the entertaining aspects of this movie, and less emphasis on the storyline. While your heartstrings will be tugged at the end of the movie, you will still be marveling at what technology can do to entertain.

And with a features-loaded DVD like this, the extra special features seem to be the star of this production.


This Code 3 DVD is packed with goodies and extra features, and would make the young ones ecstatic with its “printables” section. The rest of the clips and segments are substantial, if not typical of animation discs.

Printables – Pop the disc into your computer and there would be a page which would give you printable bookmarks, calendars, postcards, posters, activity books, photo frames, mobile hangars, jigsaw puzzles, amongst loads of other kid-friendly stuff. The only thing parents need to worry about is the printer colour cartridges which they may need to buy in bulk. And oh, the disc recommends Hewlett Packard (HP) printers and cartridges.

Commentary by directors Tim Johnson and Karey Kirkpatrick and producer Bonnie Arnold – These three filmmakers have great chemistry, and you can tell by listening to this commentary where they tell you what each scene is inspired by, accompanied by the obligatory cast and crew praising. Interestingly, the hedge in the movie is inspired by a huge 5-storey high ivy bush in their office’s parking lot. And Arnold is terribly happy whenever Verne’s butt appears on screen.

Weblinks – There are links to the official movie website, the Dreamworks Kids (DWK) website, and the official Dreamworks Animation website where you can find updates on their upcoming 2007 works Bee Movie and Shrek the Third.

Critter 411 – In this brisk 4-minute feature, you get to see the real animals, and some fast facts about them. Did you know that can young porcupines are also known as “porcupettes” and the opossum can act dead up to six hours?

Hammy’s Boomerang Adventure – In this 5-minute stand-alone short, you see the adorable Hammy being amused by a boomerang thrown to him by the naughty RJ and the porcupine babies. There is also a commentary version where you can hear director Will Finn talk about how he was inspired to make this short home-video style.

Backyard Obstacle Course – The kids will enjoy playing this game where Hammy must get to into the house without being distracted. This scene from the movie is particularly smart and will be a hit with the young viewers.

Behind the Hedge – A 12-minute summary of the movie’s making-of. From the original comic book, the technology used in the movie and the voice actors who had fun during the recording sessions, you’d see all of those snippets here.

Meet the Cast
– A 16-minute feature where you’ll see all the voice actors in action, and be surprised how their characters seem to mirror their real life personality. While Bruce Willis looks bored most of the time, Thomas Haden Church (who improvises very well) and Steve Carell (who is a hoot to watch) are at their amusing best.

The technology of Over the Hedge – This 6-minute segment features lots of scary and intimidating machines, software and computers. One very clear point we got from it was: the movie wouldn’t be what it was without the advanced technology of HP and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). Yes, the power of product placement.

Verm-Tech Infomercial
– A 3-minute spoof television commercial which features the exterminator telling audiences the benefits of signing up for a diploma in animal extermination – very hilarious, very funny, very side-splitting.

Jingle Burps – This has got to be the best bit in the platter. The 1-minute song starring Hammy and his burps is sung to the tune of the Christmas carol “Jingle Bells”. Switch on the subtitles and it will make you want to sing (and burp) along to the video again, and again, and again.

Galleries – There is a generous number of pictures from the movie’s characters, sets, packaging, sketches and storyboards.

Trailers – The disc includes the trailers for Dreamworks Animation’s three feature-length movies: Wallace and Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005), Madagascar (2005) and Flushed Away (2006).


The high-tech digital visual transfer makes sure you see every fur and hair on the animals, and there are audio options where you can listen to the critters talk in English, Thai, Mandarin or Cantonese. That is four times the fun if you understand all the four languages.



Review by John Li


Alternative Opinion:

. The movie review by our columnist

Other titles from HVN Berjaya:

. Curious George

. American Dreamz

. Bring It On All Or Nothing

. Aeon Flux

. Inside Man

. Elizabethtown

. Spongebob Squarepants Movie

. Four Brothers

. War Of The Worlds

. Munich

. Two for the Money

. King Kong

. American Pie: Band Camp

. Surviving Christmas

. Perfect Man, The

. Madagascar



This review is made possible with the kind support from HVN Berjaya


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