(The Dreamworks-uary logo is shown, before showing clips from Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit)
Doug (vo): So many of us are familiar with Wallace and Gromit, those wonderful stop-motion shorts that just had us...not always laughing, but intrigued. They were more likeable than they were funny, though granted, there were definitely some very good jokes in them. And we always enjoyed the creativity and imagination that went into making them. Well, now they have their first feature-length film, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. In some respects, it's the most imaginative and tries the most jokes out. In other respects, you kind of get the feeling maybe it was trying a little too hard to please audiences, which is not to say it's bad, it's just, part of the charm of Wallace and Gromit was that it was just sort of doing its own thing. It could be quiet, it could be awkward, it could be weird. And this one, probably because it had more of a budget, definitely seemed more like a crowd-pleaser. But in some respects, it sort of succeeded.
Doug (vo): For those who don't know, Wallace and Gromit is a story about an inventor and his dog. The inventor, Wallace, constantly has hair-brained schemes that his dog, Gromit, always has to rescue him from. And in this film, they're rabbit exterminators. Well, sort of. They don't really exterminate the rabbits, they just sort of take them off the property and, well, usually give them a home at their place. But one of Wallace's inventions goes awry, what a shock, when it accidentally creates a Were-Rabbit, a giant creature that goes through all the people's farms and destroys their crops. Wallace and Gromit are on the case, but Gromit finds out there might be a more interesting twist to this than they think, and, no, I won't give away any more than that.
Doug (vo): The movie is sort of a strange mix, because I can say I probably laughed more at this Wallace and Gromit than I did the other ones. It just seemed like they were putting in more jokes and more fourth wall humor, but the one question you did constantly have to ask yourself is, "Did this work better as a half-hour short?" And personally, yeah, I think it sort of did. Something about squeezing it into that short amount of time, strangely enough, made it seem more large and epic.
[The villain from one of the shorts, A Close Shave, is briefly shown, before showing the villain of this film, Lord Victor Quartermaine]
Doug (vo): The villains, I remember being especially threatening from those shorts. And this one is just sort of a pompous Ralph Fiennes, who's just sort of like the typical show-off jerk who doesn't get the joke, eh, there's not much to him. Maybe because the shorts were kind of on the smaller scale, you were more impressed when they did something legitimately large with them. In a movie, you're already sort of expecting something large, so it doesn't really surprise you, it just sort of gives you what you were expecting.
Doug (vo): But if what you're expecting isn't bad, like me, then this movie isn't really bad either. It's still Wallace and Gromit, it's still the same characters, it's still the same circumstances they usually get in. I just think it might've worked better if it was in a half-hour short. But for what it is, it's a fun, little movie. I can't really say the solution is make it smaller or make it bigger, but I still liked it. It's kind of hard to dislike something as innocent as Wallace and Gromit. The stop-motion animation, as always, is spectacular, the sets are probably among the biggest that the studio has ever done, and it still has two characters we really like being the two characters we really like. I can't say it's the strongest out of what Wallace and Gromit have done, but I still think it's pretty likeable. If you're a Wallace and Gromit fan, check it out. If you've never seen them before, I'd definitely say start with the shorts first.
[A scene showing Wallace and Gromit discovering a large group of rabbits invading a garden is shown]