Open Season (2006) voices Martin Lawrence, Ashton Kutcher, Gary Sinise, Debra Messing, Billy Connolly, Georgia Engel, Jon Favreau directed by Roger Allers, Jill Culton, Anthony Stacchi Movie Review

Open Season (2006)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Open Season (2006) voices Martin Lawrence, Ashton Kutcher, Gary Sinise

Bear Necessities

Here is the problem when it comes to animated movies such as "Open Season", they are made for children but often adults will end up watching them with their children. Now for children "Open Season" works with the visual comedy of a domesticated big bear and a quirky deer side kick surviving in the wild when the hunting season arrives. But for adults it is a cartoon which feels built to a successful formula which over the previous few years had been used numerous times where we have a big talking animal and a quirky side kick and unfortunately it makes it just okay for grow ups. As a reviewer it leaves me conflicted because as a grown up "Open Season" did little for me but I would hope young children found it fun.

Boog has been raised by Beth since he was a tiny bear cub and whilst now a giant big bear he is completely domesticated. That is until he finds himself with Elliot, a deer with one antler and together find themselves in the wild, not something which Boog has any knowledge of. With the hunting season just days away Boog and Elliot must rally the other animals to prepare for war on the hunters.

Open Season (2006) voices Debra Messing, Billy Connolly, Georgia Engel, Jon Favreau

So as I said "Open Season" is another animation which is built around the often and frankly over used formula of not only talking animals but a large animal with a quirky, smaller side kick. It's been proved to be a successful formula and I am sure the characters of Boog and Elliot are fun for children but are too familiar for grown ups as we watch Elliot doing Boog's head in. Of course we have a storyline to go along with this but again the idea of a domesticated animal in the wild is also not that original so whilst I would hope it would amuse children once again leaves adults a bit bored.

The knock on effect of using such a familiar set up is that most of the humour is familiar and whilst I can't remember groaning at all I did wait for something truly funny to come along with the closest it got was when we saw Elliot's butt get pounded with tranquilizer darts. Again I am sure many of the jokes will amuse young children but it leaves grown-ups wanting something genuinely funny or subtly clever. And whilst we also have a cast of recognizable names such as Martin Lawrence, Ashton Kutcher, Debra Messing and Patrick Warburton lending their voices the characters are nicely drawn but ordinary with nothing about them which makes then really loveable.

What this all boils down to is that "Open Season" I am sure works as entertainment for young children but the use of a formula makes it only ordinary for adults.