Chicken Run


Directed by: Peter Lord, Nick Park
Written by:Karey Kirkpatrick
Starring: Mel Gibson, Jane Horrocks, Timothy Spall, Miranda Richardson
Released: December 7, 2000
Grade: A

So who is Nick Park?  Few would know he’s won three Academy Awards for his short films, Creature Comforts, Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers and Wallace & Gromit: A Close Shave.  All three films were made using the time-consuming process of “claymation”.  Every part of the film is moulded from clay and altered slightly frame by frame to create the movie we all see.  This worked effectively for shorts but is it possible to create a full length feature entirely out of clay?

Welcome to Mr and Mrs Tweedy’s chicken farm in 1950s England.  It’s a tough lifestyle for the poor chickens - either lay eggs or get the chop.  As leader of the chickens, Ginger has orchestrated many escape plans from the pen but all have backfired and hope seems lost.  That is until Rocky Rhodes the Rhode Island Red Rooster comes flying through the air landing in the chicken pen.

Under the impression that he can fly, Rocky is taken in by the “chicks” and seems the answer to their prayers - he can teach them all the secret to flying.  Time is fading fast though with Mrs. Tweedy purchasing a new pie making machine and intending to use it as soon as possible.

This is a rare film that is impossible to dislike.  Rotten Tomatoes is a popular website that takes all the leading critics from across America and gives the film an approval percentage based on the number that liked the film compared with those that did not.  Chicken Run scored 100% from all 55 critics - the only film to do so this year.

Its jokes are very witty, including everything uttered from the mouth of Babs.  There’s plenty for both adults and kids to be entertained and it all wraps up in quick time.  It’s amazing to see such creativity in animation - just when you think you’ve seen it all, along comes something new.  Animation is clearly the wave of the future.

Featuring voices of Mel Gibson, Jane Horrocks and Miranda Richardson, Chicken Run is the must-see kids film of the year.  Prepare to be left with a smile on your face.