Chicken Run (2000)

(In theaters, June 2000) Every self-respecting Wallace And Gromit fan only needed to know that Nick Park was doing Chicken Run in order to rush out and see the film. Great news: Chicken Run more than meet the expectations set by Park’s three most famous shorts films. Chicken Run is a constant delight, a comedy with considerable amounts of wit and intelligence, with the added attraction of some fun action sequences. Keep your eyes open for tons of delightful film references. One could easily dwell on the technical prowesses of the film, but the storytelling is so good that it preempts any attempt at a technical analysis. Run, chicken, run!

(Second viewing, On DVD, December 2000) This survives a second viewing admirably well, which is always an achievement for a comedy. The novelty of claymation fades somewhat, and the various character quirks emerge more strongly. I was annoyed at the gratuitous romantic angle, but the script shows how well written it otherwise is. The DVD is a lot of fun, with two making-of features, commentary tracks, various extra as well as three trailers (including the hilarious Gladiator and Mission: Impossible parodies.) Unquestionably one of the best films of 2000.

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