The Nut Job (2014)

The Nut Job poster.jpgMore nutty than Squirrel shit

Director: Peter Lepeniotis
Running Time: 85 Minutes
Starring: Will Arnett, Brendan Fraser, Liam Neeson

You'd be hard pressed to tell this is the most expensive animated film that South Korea has produced, considering how cheap looking the animation is. But such is only one problem, in the latest dire attempt to entertain kids.

After accidentally destroying a tree where various animals stored their food for winter, Surly the Squirrel (Arnett) is banished to live in the city. While there, he comes upon a nut store, and makes a plan to raid it.

The story itself falls victim to predictable plotting and by the numbers development, while the "jokes" rely on poor wordplay, blind jokes, cheap fart jokes and slapstick so dumb, Buster Keaton would spin in his grave. The cast at least do competent work with their job, but by the time an animation of Korean pop star Psy appears to the tune of Gangnam Style, you're past the point of caring.

The dog showed her lack of an anus

The worst thing about this is how the main character, the person audiences are meant to identify with and root for, is a complete and utter douchebag. Sure, there are plenty of films where the lead character begins as unlikable before taking on a predictable route of development, but those films at least offer an explanation as to why the lead is that way. No attempt is made to give a reason as to why Surly is so selfish, why he refuses to share any nuts he steals with the starving animals he lives with. In fact, when you get down to it, the main character has the exact same motivations as the films villains.

The Nut Job suffers from an unlikable lead, poor attempts at jokes and cheap animation style. The cast at least manage to do a competent job, but it's hard to care when the annoyance that is Gangnam Style is forcefully crammed into the end credits. Let's see how that gag holds up in 10 years time.