Mary Poppins Returns
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All Critics (15)
| Top Critics (2)
| Fresh (3)
| Rotten (12)
For all the technical feats, droll touches and some rooster rockabilly belted out by Glen Campbell, "Rock-a-Doodle" comes off as slight as its title, a cartoon in search of a story to tell.
The problem . . . as is so often the case with non-Disney animated features, is the concept itself--and that includes a live-action 'frame' that seems gratuitous, even clunky.
It certainly does feel like a dream, albeit the kind you have when you're running a fever and have gotten all messed up on cough medicine.
Colorful tale of singing rooster has perilous moments.
One of feature animation's greatest fiascoes.
Slightly enjoyable waste of time.
Rock A Doodle focuses on a young boy named Edmund who is cursed by the Duke of Owls (Christopher Plummer) to become an animated cat. He has set out with a few farm animals to go searching for the rooster Chanticleer (Glen Campbell) who the farm animals kicked out of the farm one day, to help crow to make the sun rise and the Duke leave.
Rock A doodle is one of those films that has some pretty decent acting..... from a couple actors. Overall, most of the actors are just terrible in this movie. Glen Campbell does the stereotypical good guy, Ellen Greene does the stereotypical showgirl character, Toby Scott Granger does the stereotypical cutesy kid, and almost all the side characters are just boring or just annoying. Almost none of the main characters are interesting in the least except 2, Christopher Plummer as the Duke of Owls, and Eddie Deezen as Snipes the Magpie. Plummer may not be as good as he is in any of his other animated roles but he still does a decent performance, but the character I think that steals the show is Eddie Deezen as Snipes. This character just makes me pee my pants laughing just due to how obnoxious he sounds and how he acts and argues constantly. But overall the acting in the film is just mediocre at best.
The animation in the film really is one of the strange things about Bluth in this film because it seems very off for his animation style. Bluth is known for doing some great Disney animated films like Robin Hood, Black Cauldron and had done some great animation stuff prior to this like American Tail and Land Before Time, but here, the animation is just all over the place. The films animation is alot like "We're Back! A dinosaur story" Where the animation does look close to something like Disney at times and other times it just looks strange and even a tad creepy, and I know its kind of a nitpick but it's a bit of a hard nitpick to get over for me just due to how strange and odd it looks. Go watch the movie for yourself and you'll get what I mean.
Now, the comedy. It sucks. This is quite possibly one of the most unfunny children's films I've seen ever. I mean next to Snipes getting a good comedic moment every once in a while, the comedy for the rest of the film overshadows the good comedy with the bad. Every so often, they'll make a chicken joke, a penguin joke, a mouse joke, a bird joke, a cat joke, the film is just bad animal puns basically. There is one type of running gag that did make me laugh quite a bit though. It involved the failure of the Duke of Owls nephew Hunch, played by Charles Nelson Reilly. Hunch is on the look for Chanticleer to kill him, but the best part is he fails so badly every time without the other characters knowing he exists, and the slapstick actually gets close to being just as good as a Tom and Jerry Cartoon.
Now my main gripe with this movie, the music. This is a film that works like a 30s cartoon where everyone is bouncing, singing, and everything has a face, and that can work for a 30s cartoon, but not an animated film from the 90s. Now Glen Campbell is well known for being a singer, and he does a good job at singing, but there are several other songs in the film that are just irritating and annoying, mainly the songs done by the Duke of Owls and his minions. Now Glen Campbell does get some good songs at least but overall the songs in this film are just plain unmemorable.
Overall Thoughts, You may think I hate this film but really I think its an okay film. It certainly has a lot of flaws and it does have an annoyance to it, but the good things sometimes outweigh the bad in this film. I really don't recommend this to all people but if you're a fan of Bluths work you may like this or if you're babysitting sometime and borrow this film to watch with kids I'd recommend it.
I saw this when I was a kid, and I liked it then, but I don't really remember it now. Maybe I'll watch it again sometime, it has a very cool voice cast.
18% Rotten?! In my opinion, Rock-a-Doodle is one of Don Bluth's most underrated work.
I've been watching this film since I was like five years old and I still enjoy it. The demented owl gave me the heebiejeebies as a child. Don't make fun of me, but I have feelings for the characters. The scene where the club that Chanticlier performed announced that no cats, dogs, birds, and mice were allowed make me feel bad for our heroes. See? Proof that I feel for the characters. This movie also shows how corrupt the world would be if populated by animals. Just take a look at Pinky the Fox! He's got "jerk" written all over him.
Also, the scene where the owl keeps Chanticlier hostage under that creepy tree stump still gets me today.
Don't make fun of me for this but I think Chanticlier's hen girlfriend is freakin' hot! She's far more sexier than the animatronic hen at Chuck E. Cheese restaurants.
Well that's what I think of "Rock-a-Doodle", haters!!!
"Jeepers, I'm furry!"
This is one of many examples of a film being so bad it’s unintentionally hilarious. Don Bluth’s Rock-a-Doodle is poorly written, poorly acted, has terrible musical numbers and no directorial control whatsoever; its only redemptive feature is that it follows through with its nonsense and makes you laugh a couple of times along the way.
The story, ripped off from a Geoffrey Chaucer story about a rooster who fights a fox, makes no coherent sense. Not only is the idea of a cartoon world encroaching on the human world not original, but it's executed in such a confusing way. If the whole of the human world has been turned into watercolours, what has happened to the parents out trying to protect the farm? Do they know that any of this is going on? And if so, why don’t we see what happens to them? Even if this all takes place in Edmund’s dream, surely they’d turn up at some point.
Then there is the acting. Glen Campbell's singing is passable, as you would expect, but his delivery of lines is otherwise pretty mediocre and lifeless. Toby Scott Granger is terrible as Edmund, though to be fair he has to work with a script which is both incomprehensible and lazy; he does, in the words of the Nostalgia Critic, “make Jake Lloyd look like Haley Joel Osment”. The supplementary characters are also largely forgettable; the only thing you remember about the magpie and the mouse is that they’re incredibly annoying. And as for Goldie’s singing: it’s like a strangled canary, a complete nails-on-the-blackboard experience. The only vaguely good performance is Christopher Plummer as the villainous Grand Duke of Owls, and even that hardly stretches the boundaries of what is possible, even as children’s animation goes.
The musical numbers in this film seem to have been included to make the film more light-hearted and family-friendly. But almost no effort was expended in the writing of these pieces, either lyrically or musically, and so they come across as completely laughable. Not only are they completely superfluous to the plot, but they never develop into anything meaningful. At least in other musicals - like Plummer’s most famous work, The Sound of Music - the songs go on long enough to be actually construed into meaning something. Here they are just quick, highly surreal interludes which at best will make you laugh as you watch them on a loop and at worst just confuse and piss you off.
There are also several segments in this film which are either inappropriate or just plain absurd. The former is best shown by Edmund’s initial remark upon being turned into a cat: “Jeepers! I'm a furry!”. For those of us who are old enough to have some idea of what this means - think niche gentleman’s literature - this is just plain wrong. The absurd sections of the film include the ‘flashback’ (or whatever it is) where we enter into Edmund’s mind for a few seconds, or the bizarre sequence where Hutch - the Duke'’ aggressive pint-sized nephew - attempts to do away with our heroes in the trailer and ends up being electrocuted in a spinning bed. You watch the sequence, which runs like it’s in fast-motion, and come away with only one thought in your mind: “What the hell just happened?”.
In fact, that’s the impression this whole film will leave in your head. In his efforts to keep up with both Disney and the industry as a whole, Don Bluth has lost all grip on reality. In the wake of both Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and The Little Mermaid - which managed to be both innovative and box office hits - he has thrown everything he has at this film and, as expected, ended up with a god-awful mess. It's sloppy, inexplicable nonsense, resoundingly weird and inadvertently funny, and should only be watched as kickback for a good laugh.
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