February 20, 2011
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Director: Eric Brevig
Writer: Brad Copeland/Joshua Sternin/Jeffrey Ventimilia
Producers: Donald De Line/Karen Rosenfelt
Starring: Dan Aykroyd/Justin Timberlake/Anna Faris/Tom Cavanagh/T.J. Miller
BBFC Certification: 15
Duration: 82 minutes
We’ve seen many children’s television shows turn into a big-screen adaptation. We’ve had The Flintstones, The Magic Roundabout, The Addams Family, Scooby Doo and, pretty soon, The Smurfs will be added on the list. Hollywood have yet again come up with a big-screen version of a childhood classic cartoon, this time in the form of Yogi Bear and he’s CGI-animated as well as in 3D. Right now, alarm bells are probably ringing in your head but don’t worry, Yogi Bear isn’t actually that bad. Jellystone Park is under threat due to hardly any visitors and a mayor who desperately wants to get rid of the wildlife and sell the park. It is up to Yogi and Boo Boo to stop stealing picnic baskets and team up with Ranger Smith to save the park and save the day. The story is actually okay but it doesn’t budge from average. It felt a little too simple and, granted that it is aimed more at children, the likes of Disney Pixar’s Toy Story 3 and UP proves that you can have a wonderful and emotional story with many layers that both children and adults can enjoy. Unfortunately, Yogi Bear doesn’t have any layers to its story and it’s nothing more than meaningless and forgettable fun. Although the story shouts out to be green and eco-friendly and to care about nature, the story is instantly forgettable as soon as the movie finishes and, as a consequence, the message hardly makes an impact.
The acting is what you’d expect from a kid’s television show-to-movie adaptation of today but the acting isn’t as bad as Marmaduke or The Last Airbender. Most of the cast are mediocre as their characters but there were a couple who weren’t very good at all. Dan Aykroyd and Justin Timberlake did a great job providing their voices for the two bears and Anna Faris and Tom Cavanagh were good as Rachel and Ranger Smith but T.J Miller and Andrew Daly let the movie down a little. Although the script isn’t really any good and there’s not much character development or plot, Yogi Bear is something that children will very much enjoy. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the adults as there’s not much to the movie for them to like except for a little hint of nostalgia and the fact that it stays true to the original cartoons. Even though Yogi Bear has it’s faults, the animation for Yogi and Boo Boo are great. Overall, Yogi Bear is not only something that shouldn’t be taken seriously but is also something that the family would enjoy.
I am a fan of Hanna-Barbera cartoons and when I heard that Hollywood were making aYogi Bear CGI and 3D movie, I didn’t really have high hopes as I thought it would be like another Marmaduke. However, I was pleasantly surprised as it’s not that bad. While it’s true that it’s nowhere near a good movie and it’s almost forgettable, it’s still a little enjoyable and it was fun while it lasted. It’s good enough to keep your attention for the majority of the way through the movie but don’t expect Disney/Pixar quality otherwise you will be very disappointed. Even though this is enjoyable to an extent and it stays quite faithful to the cartoons, I’m still hoping they don’t make a sequel or a Hollywood CGI job out of Hong Kong Phooey or Top Cat!