Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers

Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers ★★★

It's become really difficult to talk about Chip ’n Dale: Rescue Rangers lately given its really divisive reception as a potential spiritual successor of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? for better or for worse. Especially in my case given how a few friends of mine have expressed the most vitriolic and unhinged pure HATRED for this movie, even to the point of becoming one of their least favorite things ever on the same levels as The Emoji Movie. Yeesh...

Not that this is anywhere near the quality caliber of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? but to put this on a level even lower than Ralph Breaks the Internet or Space Jam: A New Legacy feels really disingenuous, given that the director of this movie has expressed the passion he put into this, even if not all of it works. The conceit and plot —filled with satire on the black sheep of fiction such as bootlegs and uncanny valley stuff— and the fact that there's a lot of third-party cameos (emphasis on third-party, it wasn't just Disney property cameos) in this film, alongside the things Akiva Schaffer had to go through trying to get the permission to use most of these third-party characters with vastly different art styles in order to make this love letter to animation work, go to show that he really wanted to make something special with this movie and, as a huge animation fan myself, I can really respect that.

And, by the way, I'm pretty sure the Disney executives didn't MAKE this movie, they just RELEASED/DISTRIBUTED it. The fact that they let the director go off and make something so obviously satirical of their own practices in many ways is already insane on its own, I really doubt that said executives would be behind every single idea this movie presented.

With that said, it's definitely not a perfect movie. The cel-shading technique used in most of the characters is... not very neat. I like the direction they took with the titular characters and their backstory, but maybe it could've been explored a bit more in order to make their moments of pathos more compelling. Some of the plot beats don't tie with what was established in the previous acts and thus feel a bit like ass-pulls by the end. The villain, in a vacuum, had a decent subtext commentary on child actors being dumped after aging, but the overall presentation left quite a bad taste on many for good reason given its parallel to a very similar (and even darker) real-life case. And even though the cameos aren't as artless as the previously mentioned Ralph Breaks the Internet and Space Jam: A New Legacy, they still feel just a tad bit excessive in their focus, compared to Who Framed Roger Rabbit?'s more subtle and seamless implementation of toons.

But I still had fun with the whole package. I liked the acting fine enough overall (J.K. Simmons is a highlight, easily) and the plot, while not completely seamless, was still entertaining to see unfold, with some of the puzzle pieces being well set-up along the way. The jokes are alright; surprisingly not all of them were as lazy as some people told me, but some of them were funny merely 'cause of how dumb they were. The action scenes are nicely done, and the scene that mocked the bad trope of classic characters rapping was worth a chuckle.

Overall, Chip ’n Dale: Rescue Rangers was a pretty fine time. It's obviously not the most masterfully crafted mystery movie in the world, but unlike most shameless IP jack-offs, I can tell the person behind this one's creation put his heart into it and actually made this tiring and corporate concept into a fun plot device for a decently fun experience, and I'm surprised one of the most corporate multimedia conglomerate was okay with this being made in the first place, let alone released under their name. Seriously, you're gonna tell me that The Lion King (2019) had more creativity and artistic merit than this? Get outta town

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