Starring: Will Arnett, Brendan Fraser, Liam Neeson, Katherine Heigl, Stephen Lang, Maya Rudolph, Jeff Dunham, Gabriel Iglesias
Directed by: Peter Lepeniotis
Distributed by: Universal Home Entertainment
MPAA Rating: PG
Release Date: April 15, 2014
Running Time: 86 minutes
Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars
I remember the first time I saw the trailer in theaters for “The Nut Job”, I was literally laughing out loud. The film is made for kids but it is filled with tons of great adult jokes that makes this enjoyable to watch with your kids. The film was released this past January which was perfect timing for kids and parents looking for something new since “Frozen” took over the marketplace and it became a nice little hit. The story itself does not have the most meaty plot but it is entertaining for sure and the jokes are very sharp. Plus you can already expect “The Nut Job 2”, when it gets released in January 2016.
Official Premise: Surly (Arnett) is a mischievous squirrel with a mission: to find the tastiest nuts for winter. When he discovers a whole store filled with his favorite food, he plans a heist of nutrageous proportions. But the place turns out to be owned by ruthless bank robbers so it’s up to Surly and his furry friends to stop the nearby bank heist and save the town.
The film is not only funny and entertaining but also packed an all-star cast, Will Arnett (“Arrested Development”) is tearing up the voice-over world with this film and also stealing the show in “The Lego Movie”. Along with him there is Brendan Fraser (“The Mummy), “Liam Neeson (“The Grey”), Katherine Heigl (“Knocked Up”), Maya Rudolph (“Bridesmaids”), Jeff Dunham (“Spark of Insanity”) and Gabriel Iglesias (“Magic Mike”). Tons of great talent.
Universal released this film as a Blu-ray Combo Pack including a Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD with UltraViolet. I am a little bummed since this was released on 3D Blu-ray also and you can tell that there are some good in-your-face moments in the film. The 1080p transfer is really solid. The animation is not Pixar quality but it is well-done. There is no shortage of color in the film for sure, especially having a purple squirrel. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 tracks works with the comedy, as well as the action and music.
The special features included are pretty good, especially for kids. There are a few deleted scenes that didn’t make it into the final version of the movie. You are able to watch key scenes from the film brought to life from the original sketches in the “Storyboards” section. “The Great Nut Heist” features Will Arnett, the voice of Surly the squirrel talking about the role. “Dance-Off End Credits” is a fun way to get the kids off their feet. Lastly there are two new animated shorts including “Surely Squirrel” and “Nuts & Robbers”.