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The West Wing
A specially trained squad of guinea pigs is dispatched to stop a diabolical billionaire from taking over the world.
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Dear Jerry Bruckheimer,
I smell a rat, guy.
Here you are, Mr. Super-rich, Super-creative, Big Daddy to the CSI franchises, self-proclaimed inventor of the 3D live action movie with furry animal CGI.
I like ya, Jerry. I like CSI, especially the original franchise with William Peterson, and I respect your business savvy. But, bud, I have to admit, this movie -- it's not very good.
It's going to make some cash, and it's going to entertain some small children. It's going to scare the hell out of a lot of other small children, the ones whose parents don't take ratings seriously, and it's going to completely underwhelm older children who want a bit of story with their explosions.
For parents, who will be forced in droves to attend so their kids can see the guinea pig super spies, it's going to be a bit of a trial.
There's the characters for one thing -- about as much development as probably already existed in the first draft of the script and never got any deeper. They're not even strong STEREOTYPES.
There's Darwin, the leader, whose sort of fearless, but sort of not. There's Juarez, the oddly-named female 'pig voiced by Penelope Cruz whose main arc seems to be that she refuses to tell which of her teammates she's attracted to. And there's Blaster (Tracy Morgan) who could have been an over-the-top crazy maverick but also seems just a little tepid.
Bill Nighy, my favorite baddie, seems to enjoy himself in the few scenes he has as the film's apparent heavy, but he only has a scene with the tricked-out fly Mooch and never with the actual rodent heroes.
I'm a little ticked off too that you cribbed the name of my favorite group of superheroes from the 80s (Battle of the Planet's G-Force) and lifted the character archetypes as well, down to the late addition of Jon Favreau's Hurly (like G-Force's enormous "Tiny").
And "family" as a theme? Yeah, Jerry, it works in CSI with the whole misfits with a common goal thing. It might have worked here too, if it really had anything to do with the story and didn't seem like just a cheap lesson to tack on to the script at the eleventh hour.
I mean, maybe you've been doing TV for too long, but in the movies, saving the world is usually enough. And if you want to make the film deeper than that, you have to start with characters we care about. At all.
I was just begging by the end for even a little bit of sly CSI: Miami schtick, like seeing Darwin removing a pair of sunglasses and dead-panning a David Caruso quote. Then at least maybe the adult in me wouldn't have felt as cheated as the child.
Yeah, some little kids may enjoy it. And the opening sequences, with G-Force's dangerous mission into the villain's house, was great -- well executed, exciting, and full of hope for a good film ahead.
Promise not delivered, sadly. Sorry, Jer.