Genre: CG Animation
Director: Peter Lepeniotis
Cast: Will Arnett, Katherine Heigl, Liam Neeson, Brendan Fraser, Stephen Lang, Maya Rudolph, Sarah Gadon, Gabriel Iglesias, Jeff Dunham
RunTime: 1 hr 25 mins
Released By: GV
Official Website: https://www.facebook.com/TheNutJobMovie
Opening Day: 13 March 2014
Synopsis: In animated 3D, THE NUT JOB is an action-packed comedy in fictional Oakton that follows the travails of Surly (voiced by Will Arnett), a mischievous squirrel, and his rat friend Buddy, who plan a nut store heist of outrageous proportions and unwittingly find themselves embroiled in a much more complicated and hilarious adventure.
When we talk about animated films, we often think about Pixar and DreamWorks. If the entry is from neither of these big names, then there surely needs to be a ‘wow’ factor to convince and draw crowds to the cinema for the animated feature. Unfortunately, that can’t be said of ‘The Nut Job’.
The Nut Job is a story about a community of animals living at the park, trying out all ways to gather enough food for the winter. An outcast squirrel, Surly (voiced by Will Arnett), plans to raid a nut store to get enough food for only himself. However, a more righteous female squirrel, Andie (voiced by Katherine Heigl), propose that they work together for the good of everybody at the park. However, behind all these, it turns out that the leader of the lot, Raccoon (voiced by Liam Neeson), has deeper motivations all along…
In short, the story is one that is predictable and unattractive. It’s even mind boggling as to why the ‘human gang’s bank robbery’ was even worth mentioning in the movie’s official synopsis. It certainly did not have any anchoring or value-add effect to the film. The development of the movie was also too cliché – even little children will need more engaging storyline to maintain their interest.
In its attempt to pitch at achieving ‘family entertainment’, there were several attempts at getting laughs from adults as well. Sadly, they didn’t work out well. The intended jokes were too intentional and stale, barely entertaining anyone in the theatre.
Expectedly, given the current technology, the graphics were vibrant, sharp and clear. The computer animation was also smooth and easy to watch. These would have worked to the advantage of the film, but the design of the characters simply lacked characteristic and charm. That, coupled with a rather bare storyline, hardly made the 90-min in the cinema worthwhile.
Overall, The Nut Job is at best a boring pastime film. Since a sequel of this film has already been decided for release in 2016, we can only wish the best for the team. FYI, the trailer of the film is cut very well. You may wish to watch that 10 times over on YouTube than to set foot into the cinema for this film.
(Unless you’ve really exhausted all other options, this movie shouldn’t be listed as a choice)
Review by Tho Shu Ling