Director: Hoyt Yeatman
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Sam Rockwell, Jon Favreau, Penelope Cruz, Bill Nighy, Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Steve Buscemi, Tracy Morgan, Kelli Garner
RunTime: 1 hr 29 mins
Released By: BVI
Official Website: http://disney.go.com/disneypictures/gforce/
Opening Day: 3 September 2009
Producer Jerry Bruckheimer brings his first 3-D film to the big screen with G-FORCE, a comedy adventure about the latest evolution of a covert government program to train animals to work in espionage. Armed with the latest high-tech spy equipment, these highly trained guinea pigs discover that the fate of the world is in their paws. Tapped for the G-FORCE are guinea pigs Darwin (voice of SAM ROCKWELL), the squad leader determined to succeed at all costs; Blaster (voice of TRACY MORGAN), an outrageous weapons expert with tons of attitude and a love for all things extreme; and Juarez (voice of PENELOPE CRUZ), a sexy martial arts pro; plus the literal fly-on-the-wall reconnaissance expert Mooch, and a star-nosed mole Speckles (voice of NICOLAS CAGE), the computer and information specialist.
“G Force” is a movie built and marketed around four talking guinea pigs- and if you need anything else to convince you to watch this, then don’t bother. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer’s first foray into 3D, this is a non-stop action caper whose unique (i.e. one and only) selling point is really those live-action furry creatures.
The G-Force, as the critters are known, are a group of highly trained spies under the charge of Ben (The Hangover’s Zach Galifianakis). Thanks to officious FBI agents out to shut their highly classified operation down, they are forced to go on the run and prove their worth as valuable members of the FBI. The case in point- an evil billionaire named Saber (Bill Nighy), bent on world domination by programming all the home appliances under his corporation to wreck havoc.
There’s nothing more you need to know about its story- simply because that’s all there is to it. Throughout the movie, the quartet of Darwin (Sam Rockwell), Hurley (Jon Favreau), Juarez (Penelope Cruz) and Bucky (Steve Buscemi)- with some help from a mole named Speckles (Nicolas Cage) and a fly- infiltrate, steal and scamper to get the information they need about Saber. In Bruckheimer’s terms, it’s simply an excuse to pile on chase after chase and explosion after explosion.
There’s no denying that “G Force” is trademark Bruckheimer, a movie that moves as frantically as the creatures’ in it. Of course, thanks to the additional dimension, “G Force” doesn’t just blow things up in front of you; it also hurls its mayhem right at you. And certainly, veteran visual-effects supervisor and first-time director Hoyt Yeatman has chosen his shots purposefully, such that each action sequence is milked to its fullest 3D potential.
But much as the pace rarely lets up, that doesn’t mean the thankfully brief 89-minute “G-Force” is capable of sustaining your attention. There is only so much of yakking and preening by cute and cuddly guinea pigs one can take and “G-Force” has just too much of both. Preoccupied with impressing you how adorable they are, “G Force” forgets to let any of its characters develop any form of connection with its audience- so much so that once their its novelty wears off, you’ll quickly find yourself disengaged for the ride.
All this is thanks (or no thanks) to an almost linear script by the Wibberleys (who also wrote National Treasure and its sequel for Disney and Bruckheimer). The duo display some of the worst forms of lazy screenwriting- from a plot that’s too awfully pedestrian to lines that are too dreadfully unfunny. Their uninspired script means that little of what happens leaves much of an impression- especially not its blatantly Transformers-ripoff finale.
Even an energetic voice cast led by an all-star cast cannot save the day. Amidst the maniacal action, not the sexy Penelope Cruz, the loopy Steve Buscemi, the hyperactive Jon Favreau or the intense Sam Rockwell can rescue their characters from being mere stock-type cardboard- though not from a lack of trying. They do sound like they are having fun; pity then that their audience can’t have a share of it.
In fact, that’s really the point of watching a Disney movie like “G Force”- no one expects anything deep or profound, but at least the ride’s got to be fun-filled and enjoyable. Sadly, the makers of this movie have thought that putting four talking guinea pigs in front of the screen and creating some action around them (and you) will be enough to do the trick. It doesn’t- and “G Force” creates enough diversion for anyone below 10; everyone above that age will likely be less amused.
(It’s like the tagline says- gadgets, gizmos, guinea pigs. IN 3D! If that isn’t enough to persuade you to watch this, nothing else in this movie will)
Review by Gabriel Chong