Cast: Judi Dench, Roseanne, Jennifer Tilly, Randy Quaid,
Cuba Gooding, Jr., Steve Buscemi, Sara Jessica Parker, Jane Du Bois
If you’re hoping for an adult-friendly cartoon
like Finding Nemo or Toy Story, sorry,
you’re in the wrong theater. This is definitely
a G-raters flick only, with plenty of slapstick comedy
and “let’s work together” morals.
Surprisingly, though, there was neither a cute, fuzzy
sidekick nor a bevy of songs like “A Whole New
World” or “Hakuna Matata.” Disney
is definitely growing up in its animated filmmaking,
and while I will forever hold the score to Little
Mermaid dear to my heart, I must say that I’m
glad the company is backing off the Broadway.
Home On The Range follows the story Maggie (Barr),
Grace (Tilly), and Mrs. Caloway (Dench),
three dairy cows desperately searching for a way to
save their overtaxed farm. In a moment of bovine brilliance,
they decide to undertake the capture of infamous cattle
rustler Alameda Slim (Quaid) in hopes of claiming
the bounty reward. Standing in their way, though, is
one idiot of an equine, who can’t seem to get
it into his head that this is their gig. Buck
(Gooding, Jr.) is a hero in his own mind and
vows to gain the respect he so much deserves by catching
Slim himself, even if that means nasty tricks and snarky
Roseanne is of course Disney’s resurrected ’90s
comedian (I’m noticing a theme here) who, although
zealous in her role, fails to execute the sincere humor
of Finding Nemo’s Dory. Don’t get
me wrong, she definitely has the occasional zinger,
but too often the jokes are aimed at the younger crowd.
Well, for the most part, anyway. There are one or two
lines that I sincerely hope will go over most 5- to
10-year-olds’ heads, or there are gonna be some
awkward conversations at dinner. “Mommy, what
did that boy cow mean when he said to the girl cow that
they could help each other out?” “Reading,
honey, he meant that she could help him with his reading.”
I have to say that my favorite part of the movie is
its animated depiction of Steve Buscemi. He only
plays a bit role, but the way the artists capture his
odd little face and that rat-like sneer—brilliance!
I would love to see the Disney crew whip up an animated
version of Fargo. But back to the movie at hand.
Rating Home On The Range is a tough job because
there are essentially two rating systems to any animated
film: my system and the little people’s system.
Me, I found it to be a “feh” film—a
couple of funny points, but nothing special. The kids
in the theater, on the other hand, seemed to genuinely
enjoy it, and I have to consider that this is the audience
for whom it was essentially made. While I personally
was less than impressed with Home On The Range,
I would definitely go take my hypothetical kids to go
see it—and then spend the next 76 minutes telling
them to sit down and shut up.
— Emily Younger
Take a pal and pay full price for both tickets.
Itís worth a full-price ticket.
Itís worth a matinee ticket.
Wait for video rental.
Check out the video from the library, if you must.
While we would never encourage anyone to destroy a video...