REVIEW: “The Angry Birds Movie” Is High-Flying Animated Family Fun
Made for kids familiar with the addicting app, The Angry Birds Movie is a bright and colorful animated adventure that won’t send adults into a fiery rage.
The flightless birds of Bird Island lead a quaint and isolated life, but nestled by the shore just outside of town is the jaded, Red (Jason Sudeikis); the community’s lone angry bird. After blowing his top one-too-many times, the short-tempered Red is sentenced to anger-management therapy where he meets the lighting-quick Chuck (Josh Gad) and volatile Bomb (Danny McBride).
The three social outcasts attempt to control their issues with the help of counselor Matilda (Maya Rudolph) until one day a boat arrives full of suspiciously kind green pigs led by Leonard (Bill Hader). It doesn’t take long for Red to see through Leonard’s lies and uncover the pig’s devious agenda. With the summoned help of the mythic Mighty Eagle (Peter Dinklage), Red and his friends set out to defend their island by embracing their rage and challenging the rest of the community to stand up and get angry!
For a film based off a mobile game where birds are flung at green pigs, the Angry Birds Movie actually works quite well. Directors Fergal Reilly and Clay Kaytis managed to develop a clever story around a simple premise while including signature elements from its source. In the Rovio Entertainment game, each bird possesses a unique power when they are angrily propelled through the air – an aspect that features heavily in the film’s exciting climactic assault on Pig Island.
The 3D animated comedy offers visually stunning animated action and a likable cast of characters performed by a hilarious, all-star voice cast that includes Sean Penn, Kate McKinnon, Tony Hale, Keegan-Michael Key, Hannibal Buress, Ike Barinholtz, Tituss Burgess, Jillian Bell, Billy Eichner, Danielle Brooks and country music superstar Blake Shelton, who co-writes and performs the original song “Friends” in the film.
Some of the jokes in The Angry Birds Movie are often (like the rubber band of a slingshot) stretched to a breaking point, resulting in a few tired laughs. There are several scenes of crude and outrageous hilarity, but of course, they were spoiled in the film’s trailers.
I must warn of some irritating moments courtesy of Josh Gad’s Chuck that can cause parents to suffer Olaf flashbacks, however; the trauma is temporary and will leave adults more annoyed than angry. For kids, the film promises a flocking good time.
Rated PG, The Angry Birds Movie, opens in theaters May 20, 2016.