Alvin and the ChipmunksDecember 14, 2007
A struggling songwriter named Dave Seville finds success when he comes across a trio of singing chipmunks: mischievous leader Alvin, brainy Simon, and chubby, impressionable Theodore.
Release Year: 2007
Rating: 5.3/10 (27,714 voted)
Critic's Score: 39/100
Stars: Jason Lee, Ross Bagdasarian Jr., Janice Karman
In a tree farm, three musically inclined chipmunks, Alvin, Simon and Theodore, find their tree cut down and sent to Los Angeles. Once there, they meet the frustrated songwriter David Seville, and despite a poor house wrecking first impression, they impress him with their singing talent. Seeing the opportunity for success, both human and chipmunks make a pact for them to sing his songs. While that ambition proves a frustrating struggle with the difficult trio, the dream does come true after all. However, that success presents its own trials as their unscrupulous record executive, Ian Hawke, plans to break up this family to exploit the boys. Can Dave and the Chipmunks discover what they really value amid the superficial glamor around them?
Writers: Jon Vitti, Will McRobb
Matthew Gray Gubler
Female Intern #1
Female Intern #2
Female Intern #3
Mother in Store
Things are going to get messy.
Release Date: 14 December 2007
Filming Locations: Canoga Park, Los Angeles, California, USA
Box Office Details
Opening Weekend: $44,307,417
(16 December 2007)
(1 June 2008)
Did You Know?
Alvin wears the signature red baseball cap twice in the film.
Errors in geography:
When the Chipmunks go on tour and cities are listed, it says, "Phoenix, NV," not, "Phoenix, AZ," when it was clear from the map that they were in Phoenix, Arizona.
Alvin (singing voice)/
Simon (singing voice)/
Theodore (singing voice):
Where is the moment we needed the most/You kick up the leaves and the magic is lost/They tell me your blue skies fade to gray/They tell me your passion's gone away/And I don't need no carryin' on/Cause you had a bad day/You're taking one down/You sing a sad song just to turn it around/You say you don't know/You tell me don't lie/You work at a smile and you go for a ride/You had a bad day/You've seen what you like/And how does it feel for one more time/You had a bad day/You had a bad day/
[pushing the last of the acorns into the tree]
It's going, It's going.
[gets sucked in and falls out with all of the acorns]
And it's gone.
[from inside the tree]
Maybe we should take a break.
[an acorn hits him on the head]
That's it! I can't take this anymore! I can't! I give up! I'm sick of struggling for survival! Competing with gophers and earthworms, and that loser sparrow who always takes my nuts! And I'm especially sick of this stupid, stupid…*tree!*
Full of nostalgia, bound to make new fans as well!
When the box office figures for the US came in this weekend I was
absolutely horrified! Sure I expected I Am Legend to do well, but the
amount that Alvin and the Chipmunks got ($40+ million!) seemed absurd.
Added to that the fact that it had earned more than Golden Compass did
in its opening weekend just seemed ludicrous. The trailers I had seen
seemed very mediocre and I wasn't looking forward to seeing it that
much. So what a surprise, and a delightful one, to say how much I
really enjoyed the movie. Sure its a kids movie through and through,
and if you're not into talking animals then you will come out of this
movie and criticise its plot, script and usual more adult things that
critics criticise about. But if you go in willing to sit back and enjoy
the movie you will realise there is a lot to enjoy. The three leads
themselves, Alvin, Simon and Theodore if you've never seen the
Chipmunks before, are all very likable and have some hilarious moments.
The movie features consistent humour that ranges from fart jokes for
kids, to some really subtle references, most notably one to Die Hard
where for one moment I thought Alvin was going to complete his Yipee
Kiyay moment and make the parents gasp in horror, he doesn't so don't
get too excited. The script itself is pretty decent, there are the
obligatory clunky sentimental bits, but generally the movie is
consistent and full of laughs. It does outstay its welcome admittedly
and feels that little bit too long, but these are mere quibbles as this
is a movie that is bound to entertain many kids and adults alike, and
the fact this did better than Golden Compass no longer frustrates me,
as this is admittedly a much better movie than Golden Compass.
The three leads of the movies are CGI creations, they are also
surprisingly voice by Justin Long (Alvin), Matthew Gray Gubler (Simon)
and Jesse McCartney (Theodore), though you'd never know as obviously
their voices have been morphed so they sound much more like the
Chimpunks. Anyway their voices sound perfect, Theodore's being the most
distinct and will make many audiences world wide sit their and go awww.
Alvin is a great lead and has some brilliant moments. Simon is the most
dull of the three but has some pretty funny moments as well. But its
when the three start singing the movie just comes to life, the
Chimpunks Christmas song definitely gave the older members of the
audience to relish in, and their rendition of Funky Town is by far the
highlight of the movie. The actual adult cast themselves are pretty
decent. Jason Lee, from My Name is Earl, is a decent enough lead and at
least does better than the adult actors in Garfield who seem almost
asleep. When the sentimental stuff kicks in admittedly he does stumble
a little bit, but generally Lee is on top form and definitely isn't
always overshadowed by the chipmunks. David Cross does the traditional
villain role pretty well, although he does start to irritate after a
while and when he goes into pure evil mode later on in the film he just
seems a bit silly. But by far the worst character in the movie has to
be Claire, played by Cameron Richardson, she is out of place in this
movie and the romance thing never plays off at all.
Where Alvin and the Chimpmunks succeeds where movies such as Garfield
and Scooby Doo have failed is the fact it succeeds in the comedy
department. Sure the movie has its nostalgia factor, but if it wasn't
funny then the movie would be a disaster. Thankfully this is a very
funny movie. The fart jokes are obviously aimed at kids, but thankfully
there aren't that many of them, in fact when you compare this to
something like Garfield you realise how well the scriptwriters have
done keeping this to a minimum. Slapstick is obviously a big part but
done very well and there are many set pieces that will please
audiences. The songs as I have said are definitely the highlights and
as I've said before the Funky Town rendition is just pitch perfect.
There are many one liners to be found as well amongst amongst some of
the clunkers that appear later on. The sentimental scenes also are not
as horrific as some more recent family movies have been. In fact some
of the scenes generally do warm your heart.
Overall Alvin and the Chimpunks is a surprisingly good movie that is
definitely something parents should take their kids to see this
Christmas. While maybe not as good as Enchanted this is definitely
better than Golden Compass, and kids will lap this up. So the
obligatory sequel that will arrive seems perhaps a more joyful event
then it seemed before I saw this movie. In fact a sequel now seems
quite a decent idea.