You know what I got to do for Christmas this year? Watch the FOURTH Alvin and the Chipmunks movie (because I’m insane). You know what I had to do before that? Watch the first three Alvin and the Chipmunks movies so I could reacquaint myself with the story. It…. was…… painful! I mean good gosh, if there was ever a completely pointless movie adapted from an old carton, it would be Garfield: The Movie, or Mr. Magoo, or Scooby-Doo: The Movie, or Inspector Gadget (jeez, this genre is awful). However, Alvin and the Chipmunks comes pretty close as well. Rewatching the first Chipmunks film, I did realize that it had some funny jokes, decent human characters (mostly from Jason Lee’s and David Cross’ acting), and some pretty spot-on camerawork from experienced director Tim Hill. The *ahem* Squeakquel, had absolutely no effort or originality put into it and it resulted in one of the most clichéd, annoying, and downright horrendous sequels ever made! Then we got Chipwrecked (whoever comes up with these titles needs to be fired immediately). While not as bad as its predecessor, it is by far the most pointless of the four films (and that, is saying something).
The Road Chip (I’m going to hunt this person down, and fight them on the side of the street!) is directed by Walt Becker and written by Randi Mayem Singer and Adam Sztykiel. Stars-Jason Lee, Bella Thorne, Justin Long (Alvin), Jesse McCartney (Theodore) and Matthew Gray Gubler (Simon). Premise-The Chipmunks believe that Dave will propose to his friend (named Samantha) in Miami within the week, because they don’t want to gain a bullyish stepbrother and “lose” their father, they set out to stop Dave’s proposal with the help of Miles.
I don’t know where to start, there’s just so much wrong with this movie! The only redeemable aspects of this movie are as follows: a decent (more importantly, original) pop song which provides a genuinely heartwarming scene, some pretty landscape shots, very few (and far between) good jokes, and (for once) not embarrassing David Cross who was able to avoid this movie. What’s disappointing about these positives is that every one of them has a polar opposite negative which nullifies the positives. Let’s go over the insultingly high amount of negatives shall we?
The movie’s plot is a combination of three major clichés: the road trip, the obsessed fan set on revenge, and the jerk step relative not getting along with the other siblings. Of course, this could be remedied by adding charming characters and changing up the formula a bit (Dumb and Dumber, Misery, Step Brothers), but as you all know, the Chipmunks have no charisma, likability, or creativity at this point. Speaking of those thorns in my IQ: the stupid things the boys do (the story never explains why they have never aged in the slightest) tells me that they have never improved their behavior/maturity since square one! This is a problem because this movie has many more “emotional” scenes than your conventional Chipmunks film does (and for good reason, these movies are about singing chipmunks for crying out loud!). I cannot, nor have I ever been able to, build strong emotional connections with characters who are selfish enough to ruin their father’s possible proposal (which would make him very happy). This is something a six-year-old would do, not the supposed teenagers the Chipmunks are! I don’t know how chipmunks age (and I don’t think the writers know either), but I believe at least 10 years has passed since the first movie, considering that Dave is a professional record producer in this movie (and the Chipmunks went to high school in The Squeakquel) I can’t be far off. Do you want to know how unlikeable the Chipmunks are in this movie? Dave actually states that he has never felt more disappointed in them than now! Dang! Consider what these fury little tornadoes of destruction have done over the years: trashed his house, broken nearly every bone in his body, embarrassed him in front of his friends and love interests, gotten him fired, and caused him to abandon his vacation and get stranded on an island. How you manage to top that many atrocities I can never know.
Honestly, this is the worst the Chipmunks (as a whole) have ever acted. While The Squeakquel is definitely the worst of all four films, only Alvin acted like a complete jerk throughout, the others we passable. In this movie, Alvin, Simon, and Theodore (who’s an even bigger idiot for some reason) are all annoyingly immature. The human characters aren’t much better by comparison. Golden Globe nominee Jason Lee isn’t even trying to act, Dave’s girlfriend is bland as heck, Primetime Emmy winner Tony Hale couldn’t be more unfunny if he tried, and the stepbrother (Miles) surprisingly is less unlikeable than the Chipmunks. Because the movie is trying to put Miles in the wrong most of the time it really confused me. He even calls out the Chipmunks on their bullcrap in one scene! By the way, the Chipettes completely disappear for most of the movie as does Bella Thorne. This is a problem because they are main characters (forget what the title says, the Chipettes became main characters when Dave adopted them) and are supposed to do something with their screen time. I mean I’m ecstatic that I only have to deal with three annoyingly high-pitched voices, but as someone who knows the basics of writing, I have to point this out. Speaking of failing at writing, there is a completely pointless plot twist which rendered the whole point of the trip to be useless (it felt like a slap in the face to the entire audience). The actual road trip doesn’t begin until the 20 minute mark, and ends in about 30 minutes. Obviously this movie has no idea what “pacing” is, as there are many scenes which drag on and more than one instance where a scene could have been cut entirely. I wouldn’t mind if any of the jokes were funny (which they aren’t). It’s the same predictable, immature, awkward, disgusting, Sandler style insulting jokes you’ve seen a million times. The unnecessary references to adult movies (Taken, Psycho, etc.) that kids won’t get are still here. The constant butchering of good songs hasn’t left (because I always wanted to hear “Uptown Funk” if all the performers were high on helium). They even added some really sexist jokes here and there because, I don’t know, add variety to their lazy comedy I guess.
The movie sucks! What else is there to say? The jokes are tired, the acting is abysmal, the characters are annoying, and the writing is unbelievably lazy and clichéd. If you needed any more proof of this movie’s laziness, just look at the “Boys on the Hood” poster for this movie. They took the character models from another one of their posters, photoshopped them onto a car, and layered those stupid-looking shades over their eyes! They couldn’t even be bothered to make their main poster from scratch! Ugh. I used SEVEN of my note pages on this movie. Congratulations Pan, you’re no longer the biggest waste of my time this year. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip (I have found that person’s address) gets Guy’s Guru Grade of an F (what the heck else did you expect?).
Well, I made it out alive thank God. MERRY CHRISTMAS everybody! If you’re looking for a great movie to watch this holiday season, choose The Force Awakens as I can only hope it will prevent this movie from grossing enough money to milk any more sequels.