Disney proves itself a worthy competitor in the world of computer-animated films with its new movie, ‘Chicken Little.’ Before I continue to rave about Disney’s ingenuity, I must admit that I may be a bit biased due to the fact that I was raised and continue to thrive on Disney enterprises such as Radio Disney, Disney Channel and, of course, the Disney masterpiece films. Nevertheless, ‘Chicken Little’ is the movie to see this year.
If you are familiar with Disney movies, you are aware of its amazing ability to modify old, familiar stories. ‘Chicken Little’ is no different. Disney starts the film with the well-known tale of ‘Chicken Little’ proclaiming, ‘The sky is falling!’ Although in the original story, the chicken’s delusion results from an acorn falling on her head, we are led to believe that Disney’s Chicken Little deserves more credibility.
Voiced by the talented Zach Braff, Chicken Little sets up the movie by annoying the animal citizens of Oakey Oaks and losing his father’s confidence with his ‘crazy’ antics. After his big embarrassment, he is determined to lose his reputation as the ‘Crazy Little Chicken’ and earn his father’s support.
Music choice has always been a charming quality of Disney storytelling and ‘Chicken Little’ is not an exception. The Barenaked Ladies’ ‘One Little Slip’ opens the movie with an upbeat tune and sets the stage for Chicken Little’s determined efforts to change his pitiful situation.
Chicken Little is accompanied in his endeavors by his posse, who provide him with acceptance and support throughout the film. Abby Mallard, aka ‘The Ugly Duckling,’ gives Chicken Little advice to be open and honest with his father, an idea she gets from reading magazines geared toward young female ducks. Abby’s relations with Chicken Little also serve as the movie’s love interest, even though Abby is nearly a head taller.
Barbara Streisand-loving Runt of the Litter ironically would not be the runt of this group. Although the character towers over his friends, he can be seen as ‘most likely to be voted chicken.’ Fish out of Water is a relaxed, compassionate friend who amusingly manages to communicate well without speaking English. It is interesting to mention that his voice is provided by an office water cooler.
When Chicken Little joins a little league baseball team, he struggles to prove himself as a worthy player and win the respect of his town. Since his father was a former sports-hero, a good performance on the baseball diamond may finally create a connection between Chicken Little and his father.
The movie takes an interesting direction when aliens land in Oakey Oaks. Suddenly, the animated film becomes reminiscent of ‘War of the Worlds’ and moves you to the edge of your seat. For those with their eyebrows raised, not to worry. The alien invasion fits well into Disney’s adaptation of the story and becomes integral to explaining a key element of the Chicken Little story.
Disney’s untouchable genius is demonstrated in this film. Throughout the movie, you will notice cleverly incorporated popular-culture icons such as an Acorn PowerBook, ‘How to
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