Furry Vengeance (2010) - Can't Stop the Movies
Can't Stop the Movies
18Aug/103

Furry Vengeance (2010)

Andrew DISLIKEI am forever open to the idea of a film that looks horrible doing an about face and turning out to be good.  So when confronted with Furry Vengeance I tried to remain hopeful.  Yes, it had Brendan Fraser, an actor I really like but one that makes horrible career choices.  Yes, it featured an army of animals fighting a urban developer.  Yes, the animals "talk"... via thought bubbles.

Yes, I was an idiot to think that anything could be salvaged from this.  But I'm an optimist, so I trudge on.

Furry Vengeance, and I'm only speculating here, exists to try and get some kind of pro-environment message out into the world.  Considering the precious resources wasted to make the film, it seems a little counter productive, but I digress.  Fraser is Dan Sanders, a dedicated corporate man pledged to find ways to blow up the beaver dam blocking development progress in the Oregon wilderness.  The animals, led by a thematically appropriate raccoon, fight back and keep Fraser questioning his sanity for most of the film.  This being a film possibly intended for children (despite lacking any endearing qualities for that discerning set), slapstick and mayhem ensue as Fraser silently wills himself through the woods.

If you've ever wondered what thoughts a man might have right before he dies, just gaze into Fraser's eyes during each scene.  There's a desperation to his actions, a defeated smile occasionally caressing his cheeks as he possibly recalls fonder days frolicking with Sir Ian McKellan.  Now he's been relegated to speaking with off-screen animals and interacting with onscreen special effects that were already trumped with the release of Milo and Otis in the 80's.

This is a man who longs for the sweet hereafter.

Make no mistake about it, the entire product screams as a desperate attempt to wring cash out of an unsuspecting audience.  Awkward displays of product placement aside, many corners were obviously cut to get this to theaters.  If the animals are onscreen with the humans it's always in the form of horrible CGI.  This confused me, because the director decided to let the animals have mouth control not unlike Marmaduke or Garfield.  But Marmaduke and Garfield, despite their horrible films, at least spoke a language I understood.  These animals just make the same sounds animals always make, chirping and squeaking their way through dialogue scenes told entirely through thought bubbles.

Yes, thought bubbles.  I'm having a hard time getting over this decision, if you haven't noticed.  As the animals storm Fraser's home their thoughts are filled with Braveheart and Patton.  Occasionally their thoughts display scenes that played out not ten seconds earlier.  I'm usually insulted by this kind of audience hand holding - but what the heck.  I guess the animals need to have their own expository dialogue the same as humans.

Why was this film made?  Why did anyone think that, in a year already featuring Marmaduke and Yogi Bear, that a film featuring chattering raccoons would make a dent?  Someone put money into this project that they are never going to get back.  I won't speak of my own money, because I accept full responsibility for what I do.  But with the dearth of horribly derivative films released this year is it so much to hope that someone could have put a little thought into the film?

It's just not enough to want it.

We're living in a post-Babe world, and we know from that that you can give the audience talking animals and they'll gobble it up if delivered with a slice of whimsy and creativity.  Hell, it's one of my favorite movies, so I'll always give some benefit of the doubt to talking animal pictures.  But by the time Fraser has his heartwarming reunion with his family and decides to defend the forest rather than destroy it, I was beyond the threshold of generosity.

This is the one compliment I can give Furry Vengeance.  I decided to watch it this week instead of Miley Cyrus in The Last Song.  I will watch Brendan Fraser wrestle with existential angst against the backdrop of horrible CGI animals before I subject myself to any post-Notebook Nicholas Sparks film adaptation.  Compliments have a strange way of expressing themselves when I type, but now it's time to pop in that Cyrus flick and see how accurate that really is.

Furry Vengeance (2010)

Directed by Roger Kumble.
Written by Michael Carnes and Josh Gilbert.
Starring Brendan Fraser and a host of people that aren't on the DVD cover, so I will spare further embarrassment.

Posted by Andrew

Comments (3) Trackbacks (0)
  1. If you’ve ever wondered what thoughts a man might have right before he dies, just gaze into Fraser’s eyes during each scene. That has to be one of the funniest lines I have ever read in a review, good job Andrew!

  2. The caption under the image of Brendan Fraser holding the Wii is my favorite.

  3. I dunno, the line under the Wii just makes me think that Fraser is an Atom Egoyan’s biggest fan, and he’s just designed a videogame involving Ian Holm having long drawn out conversations bristling with intimacy and sadness.


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