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- Director: Tim Hill
- Writers: Cinco Paul (screenplay), Ken Daurio (screenplay)
- Stars: Russell Brand, James Marsden, Elizabeth Perkins
- Release Date: April 2011
- Genre: Animation, Comedy, Family, Fantasy
- Run Time: 95 min
Candy, Chicks, and Rock ‘n’ Roll
Hop was a film that I saw advertised earlier this week, and was immediately interested in seeing it. And I am glad I did, as for Easter this is a treat for the whole family with a lot to like. As a family movie, Hop is cute and funny entertainment for both kids and adults.
Is it quite perfect? Not quite. I personally would have liked Hop to have been longer by about three or four minutes, that way some of the human characters could have been developed a little more. Also, while the pace in general is fast and brisk, there is the odd occasion in the film where it could have slowed down a little to give the audience a little more room to breathe.
However, Hop is a perfect example of a film that ticks most of the right boxes when it comes to a family movie. In my mind, when it comes to part-animated/live-action comedies, Hop is one of the better ones, much better than the Garfield and Alvin and the Chipmunks movies anyway. The animation is great, with vibrant colours and bright backgrounds and the bunnies and chicks look absolutely adorable, and the live-action sequences with its striking locations and crisp editing are equally lovingly rendered.
Hop also benefits from a bright and breezy soundtrack, and a jaunty score by Chris Lennertz that fit with the tone of the film very well. The writing is funny and smart, people might argue there aren’t enough pop-culture references to satisfy adults, maybe so but as an 18 year old female the lack of emphasis on pop-culture references didn’t bother me as I have seen some animated films and shows where it goes overboard with references that are either dated or distract from the film completely. If anything, to be light with that kind of humour was a strength as Hop wasn’t really about that. Also the running gag about Hugh Hefner and the altogether different kind of bunny didn’t bother me at all, but I can see why some may find it questionable. The script has some funny and witty lines too, with Carlos having the best and most memorable.
I was also taken with the story. While not the most original story in the world, it is a polished and fun one that is fast-paced and entertaining throughout and because of its sophistication it appeals to adults as well as kids. The characters are all likable and engaging, more the animated characters than the live-action characters admittedly, EB is a zany and endearing protagonist especially. Tim Hill’s direction is above serviceable, and the acting is well done. James Marsden manages to be likable without being bland, and Elizabeth Perkins is lovely to watch. Even seeing David Hasselhoff was fun. And there is also a lively vocal cast, headed by a very vivacious Russell Brand as EB and Hugh Laurie who is rock solid as always as his dad, while Hank Azaria is outstanding in a dual role particularly as Carlos.