UK Release date: 14th October 2005
Watched on Sky+ Monday 27th August 2012.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
I first saw this one several years ago and I have to admit I wasn’t all that struck with it to be honest. A second look has totally changed my mind! I think Ardman hide so many little subtle jokes that it takes a few viewings to pick up on them. For a change I found it a comedy that made me laugh out loud (a very rare thing these days)! Here’s a very brief summary before I give you more of my thoughts.
Wallace and Gromit have gone into the pest-control business. They are a humane company called Anti-Pesto who don’t actually kill the pests; they take them in and look after them. With the local Giant Vegetable Competition coming up at Tottington Hall they are working round the clock protecting all those precious entries. Even Lady Tottington herself is having trouble with the rabbits and Anti-Pesto are called in to deal with them much to the disgust of Lady Tottington’s suitor, Victor Quartermaine. It’s when Wallace decides to use his mind control machine to brainwash some bunnies into not liking vegetables any more that an accident brings about… (Dramatic Music)… The Ware-Rabbit! It terrorises the neighbourhood taking all the vegetables it can find! It gets so bad that the Giant Vegetable competition in under threat! Not to worry; Gromit is on the case!... I’ll leave it there or the Ware-Rabbit will be after me for letting the cat out of the bag (again).
Filmed in stop-motion, it is brilliantly animated with a really marvellous plot and the usual great musical themes that all Wallace & Gromit films have. All the performances were great; You couldn’t have a Wallace and Gromit film without the marvellous voice of Peter Sallis as Wallace (and Hutch in this one). Ralph Fiennes supplies the voice of the slippery Victor Quartermaine and Helena Bonham Carter is great as Lady Campanula Tottington. Also worthy of note were; Peter Kay as PC Mackintosh, Nicholas Smith had some of the best lines (IMO) as the Reverend Clement Hedges, Liz Smith as Mrs. Mulch, John Thomson as Mr. Windfall, Mark Gatiss as Miss Blight and Geraldine McEwan as Miss Thripp.
Full of subtle little jokes, but also at its heart a great plot that keeps the audience guessing. I must admit I really enjoyed this one; for me it had everything I would look for in a comedy; characters you actually care about, a plot, some really funny sight gags and a lot of more subtle comedy besides. I should also mention the quality of the performances as well; the comic timing was impeccable. Over all, probably the best comic film I’ve seen in a very long time… Well worth a look.
SteelMonster’s verdict: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
My Score: 8.8/10
IMDb Score: 7.7/10 (based on 57,298 votes at the time of going to press).
MetaScore: 87/100: (Based on 38 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com at the time of going to press).
Rotten Tomatoes ‘Audience’ Score: 72/100 ‘Liked it’ (based on 360,968 user ratings counted at the time of going to press).
Lady Tottington: [over the phone] It's a disaster. I have the most terrible rabbit problem. The competition's only days away. You simply have to do something.
Wallace: Certainly, M'um.
Wallace: [Aside, to Gromit] I think we're about to go up in the world, lad.
Wallace: [Back on phone] Just stay right where you are, Your Ladyship, and we'll be with you in an...
[hits the control panel and gets dragged up through the ceiling]
Lady Tottington: In an hour? But I can't wait an hour. I have a major infestation. Hello? Hello?
Wallace: Burrowing bounders! They must be breeding like... well, rabbits.
Reverend Clement Hedges: This was no man. Does a man have teeth the size of axe blades? Or ears like terrible tombstones? By tampering with nature, forcing vegetables to swell far beyond their natural size, we have brought a terrible judgement upon ourselves.
[Ominous organ music plays]
PC McIntosh: [to the organ player] Hey, give over!
[Organ player stops]
PC McIntosh: You're mental.
Reverend Clement Hedges: And for our sins, a hideous creature has been sent to punish us all! Repent! Repent! Lest you, too, taste the wrath of... the Were-Rabbit!
Lord Victor Quartermaine: How on earth would those tiny-minded buffoons ever catch such a big rabbit?
Lady Tottington: Mr. Wallace?
Wallace: Um... with a big trap!
[Gromit slaps his face]
Mr. Crock: By Jove, he... he's got it!
Hutch the Rabbit: Cheeeeeeeese!
Official Site (UK): http://java.europe.yahoo.com/uk/uip/wallaceandgromit/index.html
Official Site (US): http://www.wandg.com/