Candy, Chicks and Rock ‘n’ Roll – A Hop Review

A couple of weeks ago, Ashley saw a charming little trailer for a new movie starring James Marsden, Kayley Kuoco and a bunch of animated chicks and bunnies. With feigned excitement, she immediately sent Veronica a message and mocked her about how this movie fused her love of James Marsden with animated animals and laughed at the poor sucker that she would drag with her to see it.

The very next day, karma placed a screener for that very movie in Veronica’s possession and as the fates would have it, Ashley begrudgingly joined Veronica at the pre-screening of HOP last night at AMC Yonge/Dundas theatre.

Just in time for Easter comes this fluffy tale of the Easter Bunny’s teenage son E.B. (voiced by Russell Brand), who heads to Hollywood to become a drummer in a rock’n’roll band to avoid taking over the family business. An unemployed slacker named Fred (Marsden) accidentally hits him with his car and ends up taking the injured bunny home to recover. They of course develop an unlikely friendship and eventually push each other to realize their individual priorities and potential.

Directed by Tim Hill (Alvin and the Chipmunks) and produced by Chris Meledandri (Despicable Me), HOP blends state-of-the-art animation with live action and a whole basket full of comedic talent. But it is a kid’s movie, ultimately, so the comedic talent isn’t necessary used to their full potential and the laughs are left to animated jelly bean poops, dancing chicks and over the top performances. And it’s certainly strange to see the antics of Brand toned down to an almost decent level, void of any inappropriate remarks or gestures.

But that isn’t to say they leave us adults hanging, though. There are a few witty remarks thrown in that’s bound to tug a little chuckle out… the best being an appearance by The Hoff as the judge of a talent show who’s lack of surprise at the talking bunny is best explained because his “best friend is a talking car“. We howled. None of the kids got it.

Hank Azaria’s villainous Carlos is a delightful addition, his scheming sidekick persona seems to be one of the more developed characters. But then again, it’s hard to go wrong with a sarcastically bitter, chubby chick with an accent.

Marsden, who everyone seems to solely associate with Cyclops from the X-Men movies, is most fondly remembered by us as the wet shirt wearing, Bennie and the Jets singing journalist Kevin in 27 Dresses. But he is no stranger to children’s flicks at this point, having perfected his animated performance in Enchanted and lending his voice to Cats & Dogs: The Return of Kitty Galore. Frankly, we would gladly see him in anything. Or out of everything. (Boom)

We can’t say this is a must see for everyone, but if you have children or are a big kid at heart, take the hour and half to sit back and enjoy a coming of age-esque story that may not leave you in stitches but will definitely leave you wanting candy.

images from google images