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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 17:24 EDT

You’Ll Go Monkey Nuts

August 1, 2008

SPACE CHIMPS

(U, 80 mins) Family/Sci- Fi/Action/Comedy/Romance. Featuring the voices of Andy Samberg, Cheryl Hines, Patrick Warburton, Jeff Daniels, Kristen Chenoweth, Zach Shada, Carlos Alazraqui. Director: Kirk DeMicco.

*****

After the other worldly pleasures of WALL-E and the high kicking lunacy of Kung Fu Panda, Kirk DeMicco’s computer animated comedy is a crushing disappointment.

As the snappy title intimates, there’s plenty of monkey business in this outlandish adventure but the screenplay and the animation lack the necessary sophistication to engage audiences.

None of the characters are developed in any detail. Indeed, when one NASA-bound chimpanzee boasts “Space is in my veins” and his sidekick quips, “And between your ears,” he might as well have been talking about any of the primates in the film: Homo sapiens or Pan troglodytes.

The action set pieces are sluggish, blighted with clumsy, unappealing visuals that would be an embarrassment on the small screen let alone on the vast canvas of a multiplex. Vocal performances are similarly uninspired.

Performing circus chimp Ham III, (voiced by Samberg), grandson of the very first primate in space, is recruited by NASA as part of a campaign to retrieve the missing Infinity Space Probe, which has been sucked through a wormhole onto the other side of the galaxy.

Ham joins professional astrochimps Titan, (Warburton), Luna, (Hines), and Comet, (Shada), who are unimpressed by the newcomer’s goofiness or his unwillingness to boldly go where so many have gone before.

Unfortunately, there are only three seats in the space shuttle Horizon so technical genius Comet is forced to remain behind at NASA HQ to guide the mission from the ground.

Emerging through the wormhole, Ham, Titan and Luna crash-land on the planet of Malgor where the megalomaniacal Zartog, (Daniels), is exploiting the Infinity Space Probe to enslave the rest of the population.

So the chimps join forces with lovable alien Kilowatt, (Chenoweth), to outwit Zartog and restore peace to this strange world.

NO SWEARING; NO SEX; VIOLENCE

(c) 2008 Evening Chronicle – Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserved.