Hop is the latest film brought to us from Tim Hill, director of Alvin and the Chipmunks. It tells the tale of E.B., the teenage son of the Easter Bunny who is soon to take over the Easter crown – except this bunny doesn’t want to. Instead he has dreams of rock and roll and longs to be a drummer. As the pressure builds for E.B. to take over, he decides to run away to Hollywood to pursue his dreams. It is here that he accidentally gets run over by Fred and his real adventure begins.
E.B. is voiced by current man of the moment Russell Brand and it initially seems a bit weird him having a British accent in an American animation – but then his Dad is voiced by Hugh Laurie. Both of these men are huge in America right now so they have global appeal and Russell Brand’s quirky voice and humour give E.B. a really nice tone to his character – he’s a bit of a wise guy but has a likeable naivity and innocence, something that Brand playing Brand in a normal film just cannot pull off. Fred is played by James Marsden, who is known for films like Hairspray and Cyclops in the X-Men franchise. He is an all-American man next door and plays down-on-his-luck Fred well.
The mixture of animation and live action in this film is slick and works well. The studio behind this was also responsible for Despicable Me and are definitely ones to watch for future releases. The humour in this film is a mixture, great for kids who like laughing at cute little animals with character voices, Hank Azaria as Carlos is a particular favourite, and adults who like Brand.
There are some great moments within the film – E.B. auditioning for David Hasselhoff as part of Hoff Knows Talent being a highlight. E.B. particularly shines in this scene with his fantastic drumming skills and Hoff almost looks as though he knows what is going on around him.
While Hop is enjoyable it lacks the sophistication that recent animations like Rango and Despicable Me has had to offer, however, Hop isnt really that kind of film. It does what it says on the tin and that is feel good, fluffy, cute family entertainment. The story is light and sweet, just like the candy.
Best performance: Russell Brand as E.B. closely followed by Hank Azaria as Carlos.
Best scene: Hop auditioning for David Hasselhoff.
Best line: ‘My dad’s right, I really need to get my act together, in Hollywood’ – E.B.