Big Openings for “Nut Job” and “Boonie Bears” Prove That Audiences Just Don’t Care

It was a great weekend for subpar family CG films starring animals. Peter Lepeniotis’ The Nut Job, the first animated film released by Open Road Films, the new distribution company launched by AMC Theatres and Regal Entertainment Group, opened in third place with a robust $19.4 million. It’s a four-day holiday in the United States, so the film will have a healthy Monday gross as well. No one had anticipated the film performing so well, especially after its poor reception with both critics and audiences.

The most recent comp—a mid-budget CGI children’s animal comedy—would be Reel FX/Relativity’s Free Birds, which opened last November with $15.8M and went on to gross $55.2M domestically. As it stands, The Nut Job is on track to become the highest-grossing Open Road film yet, and a sure sign that they’ll be releasing more second-rate animated films in the future.

Frozen dropped from second to fifth place, with $11.8M (est) for a total of $332.4M. The film also added $24.6M from international territories pushing its international gross to $426.5M. The Oscar-nominated Disney film has now pulled in $758.9M globally.

In China, audiences were subjected to Boonie Bears, their equivalent of The Nut Job. Families there embraced the film, driving it to a powerful $16.2M dollar opening. That’s more than The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug grossed last weekend across 63 different territories. The Oscar-nominated Despicable Me 2, which finally opened in China last weekend with the title Super Thief Nanny 2, banked a powerful $18.4in its second frame. The Universal hit has now grossed $33.9M in China and $964.8M globally.


  • jonhanson

    Family options are limited right now, it shouldn’t be surprising. In my town it’s the only PG movie that’s been released within the past month.

    And on the subject of Boonie Bears it’s also unsurprising that people would support their own productions. It’s just proof that Chinese audiences are hungry for animation that’s made for them. I mean Kung Fu Panda made bank there just because of the setting, here’s hoping this means good things for the future of Chinese animation.

  • Dirty Laundry Day

    I’m pretty sure more the %50 of the people that watched it think they were watching a Pixar film too. Like Hicks once said: Boy, is my thumb not on the pulse of America.

    • jonhanson

      Honestly I can’t say how many times I’ve had to teach people that there is more than 2 animation studios in America. And even then they keep getting Pixar and Disney confused.

      Not that I blame them, most people have no reason to educate themselves on the subject.

  • Pedro Nakama

    The executives at DreamWorks are wiping the sweat off their foreheads and thinking, “There may be hope for ‘Peabody and Sherman’.”

  • Mark Mayerson

    I haven’t seen The Nut Job, so I have no opinion as to the quality of the film. However, I believe any studio should be given the benefit of the doubt on a first feature. Undoubtedly, The Nut Job did not have a budget equal to those from Pixar, Disney, DreamWorks, etc. and I’m guessing that the crew also didn’t have the same depth of experience.

    I hope that the film is profitable, that the studio gets to make another film, and that everyone feels that the studio is getting stronger with each new release.

    • AmidAmidi

      Feeble, derivative films designed to cash in on the success of more popular films don’t encourage the healthy, long-term development of the animation industry. True, some investors and corporations who put money into Nut Job are going to walk away with padded wallets, but the benefits to the animation community are questionable. I wish I could share your positive outlook, but to do so, I’d like to hear some precedents for CG studios that have launched with a film like this and then started making quality work afterward.

      • TinTina

        How exactly is a film suppose to pull out all the stops and make a blockbuster film when they make modest profits off these cash-ins that we keep insulting? It would take them years just to raise up enough cash to rival a Disney or Pixar film and even then, that one film could bankrupt them if they didn’t do well.

        • IamSam

          Creatively and by using ingenuity. Changing the style up a bit. There are ways

          • TinTina

            I remember a point when Dreamworks tried to make 2D films different from the Disney formula and struggled. And Don Bluth tried to make more mature films and struggled.

            Disney wanted to break from their own princess films and tried adventurous films, no good. Then they tried very simplistic comedies (Both 2D and 3D) and the company started to lose their reputation after that.

            Even Warner Brothers struggled when they tried to release 2D films to the big screen. Even something with a following already like The Powerpuff Girls was this close to being a flop.

            You know what did succeed though? Shrek. Anastasia. Frozen.

            How many “out of the box” animated films have you seen that succeeded in the past 20 years? Pixar seems to be the only one safe from a flop because of their brand name. Even their good-not-great films like Brave get awards.

          • Animator606432

            Most of those Don Bluth films, excluding all dogs go to heaven, were just not that good. The same goes for majority of Dreamworks films. And FYI, “The Prince of Egypt” did amazing at the box office and that WASN’T Princess type movie. So did “How to Train your Dragon”. So did “Wreck it Ralph”. As a matter of fact, it appears that the majority of films that failed at the box office that were “out of the box” were just bad movies.

          • Chris Sobieniak

            Interesting you liked “All Dogs”, I would put “Secret of NIMH” up there as well, if only because it tried to go somewhere.

      • Paul Eberhard

        Amid,

        Most companies (in all industries) don’t jump right out of the gate with the greatest of work. Everybody starts somewhere.

        Even if you look at successful TV shows, for example Seinfled (maybe you’ve heard of it), or 30 Rock. They had really unsuccessful and panned first seasons. Should Jerry Seinfeld have been banned from making more episodes of Seinfeld, or any TV ever again? (Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee has it’s moments) Those who are successful learn and grow from what they’ve produced in the past, and those who are bitter and feeble sink to the bottom.

        Enjoy the bottom bud.

        • jonhanson

          None of those examples are animated films. The clear difference for me is that all your examples are live action TV where you produce a half hour a week over twenty times a year. You get a lot of room for trial and error. Animation is less forgiving, you get maybe one shot every 4 years. And let’s not forget that the first season of Seinfeld and 30 Rock are pretty solid in retrospect even if they didn’t reach the heights that they would a few seasons later.

          Feature animation is pretty unforgiving, most studios only get one shot and the luckier ones get maybe 2 or 3. And I can’t think of any that have gone from making something truly forgettable to something noteworthy.

          That said I’d love to be proven wrong.

          • IJK

            “And I can’t think of any that have gone from making something truly forgettable to something noteworthy.”

            Sony Pictures. First film they made: Open Season. Most recent: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.

            They have their hiccups like Surfs Up! and the Smurfs, but they’ve also put their money towards great projects like Arthur Christmas, Hotel Transylvania, and helped with Pirates! Band of Misfits.

          • Paul Eberhard

            Do the examples have to be animated? Those were the first that came to my head because of a Tina Fey/Amy Poehler thing on TV last night. They were examples that show how people learn and improve.

            But okay. Um how about Dreamworks? Until Kung Fu Panda all of their films weren’t very solid films (I’m using nice words). They might have looked sleek, but they definitely were not classics. Shark Tale? Antz? Madagascar? The Bee Movie? Etc. Sure Shrek had its moments, but the designs were pretty rough… And then all of a sudden this studio produces Kung Fu Panda and How To Train Your Dragon, which were quite quite good.

            So one… that shows you a studio that had way more than one shot of making a great film. And was able to improve their craft. And two, it’s an animated example.

          • jonhanson

            I didn’t want to be over critical, I just wanted to focus in on the unique challenges of animation. Your main point stands that artists rarely shoot right to the top but for most animation studios that means short films or hiring directors that honed their skills elsewhere.

            As for Dreamworks I really liked Antz and a look at Rotten Tomatoes shows that somewhere around 90% of critics agree with me. Not classic, but definitely a worthy start. And I’d say Shrek is a classic for a number of reasons though I understand aesthetic critiques.

            A better example to me was the previous commenter’s mention of Sony Animation since Open Season was kind of rough. While it was much better reviewed than Nut Job it’s just a shadow of Surf’s Up and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. So on that one I’ll accept being proven wrong.

            And I hope Toonbox Entertainment proves me wrong and makes a stone cold classic next time out. If I had my way we’d see 52 animated films coming out a year and all making profits. My worry is that if enough poor-mediocre films come out it’s going to devalue all family animated films since most the people I meet think that every animated film comes from the same studio.

    • Sir_Cheese

      Thank you Mark for the kind words. As an artist who worked on The Nut Job, it certainly means a lot to hear support from others out there. Personally I enjoyed my overall experience working on it. I’m young in my career, so being trusted to join this team, actually work on a feature, and receive encouraging attitudes from others including Peter (the director) made a positive difference in my life. It’s my belief that positive, personal experiences like this are part of what bring healthy growth to our lives, and the industry at large. The production never felt (at least to me) like an attempt at a quick buck or riding others’ coat tails, but rather like a group of artists simply trying to make a film. While it wasn’t a masterpiece and deserves its fair portion of critique, The Nut Job was still fun to work on.

      • Mike

        For the money it was made on, The Nut Job really is a triumph, artistically anyway. Glad to hear working on it was a positive experience for you.

      • Animator606432

        Just for the record, I would like to say that the animation wasn’t even a major problem in the film. I think you all did a fine job giving what you had to work with.

        • Sir_Cheese

          Thank you, Mike, and all the other supportive voices too for your kind words. I agree; we may not have had much compared to other feature films but did a lot with our resources at hand.

    • More the Merrier

      I tell you what…. It looked 100 times better than “Over the Hedge”, and I’m sure it cost a fraction of what that movie cost to make.

  • http://twitter.com/coldmilk coldmilk

    Just because a movie doesn’t review well with critics or cause you to question your own mortality by means of celebrity voiced talking toys doesn’t mean it deserves to fail financially.

    As far as I’m concerned, if mid-to-low-budget animated movies can prove to do well in the box office, it means we can get a lot more animated projects green lit. While a movie featuring talking squirrels dancing to Gangnam Style with a plasticky CG version of PSY doesn’t particularly interest me, no one is forcing me to watch it either. At the end of the day, if we get to see more animated movies get produced, there is a greater chance we can see an interesting idea come to screen that’s not from a proven big studio with a photo-real budget like a Pixar or something.

  • Floyd Norman

    Animation continues to prove itself more profitable than live-action. And, less risky as well. Fat chance animation people will ever see any of the profits.

  • Rick Dolishny

    Haters gonna hate. Not sure what exactly the point of this review is other than to slam independent animation.

    I recall similar h̶i̶t̶ ̶j̶o̶b̶s̶ reviews on Barnyard and Hoodwinked, that are pretty crude, but continue to be favourites for younger kids.

    • http://the-animatorium.blogspot.com/ Natalie Belton

      But there are other independent animated features of far better quality and more originality. (Sita Sings the Blues, Secret of the Kells, The Illusionist, Persepolis, anything by the recently passed away Michael Sporn, etc.) Just because a film is independent/lower budget doesn’t mean it should be trying to be derivative of popular Hollywood formulas. In fact, it often fails to work on an artistic level.

      • John

        All those films you listed are in 2D though, which is much easier to do on a small budget, or hell, by yourself, as opposed to compositing a shot in CGI to look good with just one person.

        Princess & the Frog and Tangled, both Disney princess movies, yet one had less than half the budget of the other.

        And those films were conceived in very different ways. All the ones you listed were made by artists whose dreams it was to share this story. If they didn’t have a studio to help, they would have made it entirely themselves with their own money.

        The Nut Job was probably made by some executives looking for an animated film to release during the typical blockbuster downtime (January and February are prime times for subpar films) and got a bunch of artists together to brainstorm simple ideas and then make it happen. There would be no Nut Job without those executives, as opposed to those other films you listed. There were dedicated people working on it, sure, but they would not have dedicated their lives to it.

  • Tangarine

    Hey Amid, go see the Nut Job before you comment.

  • TinTina

    Slams anything done by big studios if they follow their “formula” (Dreamworks comedy, Disney princess).

    Slams anything done by independent studios because it’s not a big studio AND is targeted to families. How dare they! All animation should make a sudden turn into being for adult and mature audiences, unless it’s Seth MacFarlane, then we’ll bash it and pretend it doesn’t exist!

    Slams CGI if it’s not high quality with a budget of millions and millions of dollars but praises choppy old 2D animation because “it’s a classic”.

    Praises anything done by Adventure Time artists or Rebecca Sugar.

    So Amid, remember that childhood classic you watched as a kid that was probably totally dull to your parents but you loved it anyway? Maybe it was The Incredible Journey or hell, even Space Jam? Maybe you still love it now for nostalgic reasons?

    That’s what The Nut Job is.

  • Arthur Fonzarelli

    The animation in The Nut Job looks fantastic considering it was only made for 40 million.

  • Mister Twister

    I want to live in a better world…

  • jonhanson

    Every film has effort put into it. In fact some of the crappiest films have the most big hearted people working on them.

    That said animation is the only field of art I know where this ,response gets thrown out constantly. Is it the size of the industry or the scarcity mindset that says any real criticism could cause the whole thing to come tumbling down?

    I respect every artist who goes out and does whatever they can, no matter what the results may be. With that said I don’t see that as a reason to put up walls in some attempt to protect against hurt feelings, as long as it’s the work being criticized instead of the people.

    You want to get an A for effort? Talk to your friends, family or fellow crew members. You want the art form to evolve and thrive you allow it to be treated like any other where critics are allowed to call them as they see them.

    • IJK

      “Every film has effort put into it.”

      Yes, but earlier on when people were making CGI cash-ins like Hoodwinked, they got animators who barely knew how to use the program to animate. Those people were definitely working under a similar commercial mindset where “I just need to get what the client wants done, get paid, and move on.”

      There are many people who are asked to do Flash animation commissions for companies and they don’t really care if the art looks good or not, just if it’s “done” and if it’s “what they want”.

      Something like The Nut Job, the people working on it actually try to maintain a standard. They’re still working in a process like they would at Dreamworks — pitching storyboards with their own jokes ideas, sharing character designs among the artists, recording themselves for acting references.

      Really, the biggest problem with The Nut Job is that the script is just kind of boring with only a few good moments. The visuals, animation, design, music, and voice acting all ranges from decent to pretty darn good.

      So this isn’t just about “Giving them an A for effort” but actually trying to keep animation up to SOME standard rather than dumbing themselves down to Hoodwinked level, a movie which made a KILLING at the box office. Those Tinkerbell or Barbie movies could very easily have limited releases, but thank God. At least it creates some expectation for how an animated movie should be if it’s to be on the big screen.

      There’s nothing horrendous about Nut Job. Or even bad. It’s just a “meh” film, and there’s nothing terribly wrong with a “meh” film. The fact that this industry has grown from Disney and Warner Brothers/Don Bluth/Whoever decided to compete against Disney at the time releasing one animated film 1 – 3 years to being able to watch 10 new films a year is amazing. Of course they’re not all going to be great, but they’re also not all going to be targeted towards me.

      This is clearly a movie for kids, moreso than something like Monsters University or Monsters vs. Aliens, and for a kids animated film, it’s pretty decent. So why is it that movies like this, Free Birds, or Escape from Planet Earth are considered blemishes to the animation community? They’re great job and learning opportunities for inexperienced American animators and overseas animators alike. Way better than working on something like Delgo.

      Having more and more animation studios will always be a good thing to me. It’s only a concern if the influx causes a severe drop in quality, which The Nut Job has not done. In fact, ever since the days of Hoodwinked, the quality of “cheap cash ins” has gone way up.

      • Animator606432

        THANK YOU. I’m so tired of people using that “Limited Budget” excuse as if that somehow makes up for the awful writing. Hoodwinked had a tiny budget but the film is amazing. Why? Because the people who wrote the film actually had creativity and talent. They set out to make an entertaining film not to cash in.

        For godsake, The Nut Job was so lazy that it ended with the song “Gangnam Style”, in a film that takes place in the 50′s. If the animation was the only problem I had with this film, I would cut it a break. But the writing is terrible and the characters are annoying. There is just nothing good about this film and further brings down the art form.

        • Roberto Severino

          You hit the nail right on the head! Cheap budget does not justify bad writing, cliched character designs and plots in CGI films period!

          • IJK

            How many feature films with cheap budgets have you seen that were great? Hoodwinked’s budget was $8 million. Nut Job’s was $40 mil. Despicable Me was $69 mil. I’ll let you gauge what you think a cheap budget is based on those three listings.

          • Roberto Severino

            I take back what I said. Maybe those were the exceptions. I’ll check them out. Thanks.

          • Animator606432

            Quite a few actually. I’m talking about any every genre. What is cheap is subjective, you’re right, but 8 million is VERY cheap for any film. I really can’t believe they spent $40 million on The Nut Job and that’s all we ended up getting. That actually makes the film even worse because we got something that felt cheap and half-assed when it really wasn’t.

          • IJK

            We’re talking about animation, and for animation, having a low budget and a still entertaining film is very rare. And “quite a few” doesn’t actually help your argument because that still gives me no list to go by.

            You say cheap is subjective, then are appalled by Nut Job’s budget? Most of that money probably went to paying the voice actors, which means there was less than $40 mil going to the art department, and I’d like to think that visually what we got for the budget they had was pretty damn impressive across the board.

          • Animator606432

            I never really complained about the animation. I said the writing was terrible.

            As for animation, that is not uncommon. What about all the Jay Ward shows for example? What about things that are made in flash and just posted on youtube. Some of them even done by one person, and i’ve seen some STILL manage to have decent animation.

            Also, if most of the budget went to the voice talent, that’s just money wasted.

          • IJK

            Now give me an example involving CGI, because the production value of CGI is way different than 2D. Even a learning student can make a 2D short that rivals big studio shorts/tv shows, very hard to say the same thing about CGI.

          • Animator606432

            I thought Hoodwinked was the CGi example? That’s what i’m basing most of my complaints of this film on. I’m not sure what you arguing about? I’m not talking about quality of the animation here. I’m talking about the quality of the script. I understand a film with a small budget is going to have mediocre animation. Who doesn’t expect that? But what about the piss-poor writing? Nothing to do with the budget or the animation. What about the stupid, we need to have a pop song at the end of this movie even though it contradicts the era we’ve set the film in, type of laziness this film has?

          • IJK

            But you also said “Quite a few actually.” Quite a few as in, just one?

            Hoodwinked uses a ton of pop culture references, one of their main characters is a cliche (Old grandma who is also a badass), and half the film is just a series of jokes. It’s only until after everyone’s flashback does something “happen”. The fast-talking squirrel is basically their version of a “Minion”, something meant to throw in all the trailers and get an easy laugh without involving much wit. Patrick Warburton and Boingo are literally the saving graces of that film.

            So exactly how is this much better than The Nut Job? It’s not like trying to compare Nut Job with Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs .You’re just comparing it to another sub-par film.

          • Animator606432

            Okay I’m not going to explain why Hoodwinked is a good film. I just don’t have the time to. Hey I understand, you worked hard on this film or you know somebody that worked on the film. Fine. But the film is still bad regardless. It’s a terrible movie and nothing you say can change that.

          • IJK

            Yeah, that’s the only reason someone would defend a film by a small studio from overly harsh criticism by people who have yet to see it, because I or someone I know worked on it.

            I guess by that logic, your best friend must have worked on Hoodwinked and was rejected a storyboard position to work on The Nut Job?

            I’m sure it’s more like you have nothing left to say because you realize your whole point was going down the drain and all you really wanted to do was jump on the bandwagon of hating a film based on a trailer or screenshot.

            Good luck with thinking your opinions are fact though, I’m sure that will fair well for you in the creative world.

          • Animator606432

            AGAIN, i just said I saw the movie. What would I have to gain by hating on a movie i’ve never seen? It’s a terrible movie.

            Any criticism towards this film is “overly harsh criticism” in your eyes. That’s why I assumed you know someone who worked on it, because you act like you have some personal stake in it. So I apologise if this offended you.

            No one cares how small your studio is when you release something that’s garbage. They expected people to PAY to see this in the theater and that is not cheap. If this were going direct to DVD, I would just leave it alone. But this is getting a wide release and that’s just unacceptable, I don’t care who worked on it.

            When did I ever imply my opinions were fact? When did I ever say “you’re wrong and i’m right’?

            I haven’t run out of things to say, I have plenty to say and thankfully most people agree with what i have to say

          • Chris

            You claim your oppinion is fact, you are right, he is wrong, when you say stuff like:
            ” It’s a terrible movie and nothing you say can change that.”

          • Animator606432

            Please then. Tell why this isn’t a terrible movie…..

          • IJK

            And honestly, if the Hoodwinked trailer was released now would you really go out and see it, or would you think this just looks like a horrible cheap cash-in with talking animals and no effort put into it and talking shit about it the same way you would with every other small studio feature animation film out there?

          • Animator606432

            First off, I’ve SEEN the Nut Job. I’m not basing my observation off of the trailer (which was terrible and did nothing to make me excited to go see this). I always like to give an animated movie a chance because I did skip over Hoodwinked when it was released. But I’ve learned that sometimes these films can surprise you. This film DID not do that and they didn’t even try to do anything clever or creative. And what cliches they did give us, they managed to screw those up as well.

            While both films may look like, as you put it, ” like a horrible cheap cash-in with talking animals and no effort put into it” only one of those films truly is.

        • Paul N

          …and one of the Shrek films ended with “I’m a Believer,” and Mulan ended with Mushu wearing Ray-Bans. Anachronisms abound in animated films. Seems a weak complaint.

          • Animator606432

            First off, those films happened more than a decade ago. At the time it wasn’t nearly as much of an annoying cliche as it is now. Second off, the pop culture reference and use of music in the Shrek films are part of the world the film creates. The Nut Job is supposed to take place in the 1950′s and, from what I can tell, not an imaginative version of it either. So that song has NO place in the movie regardless. Third off, really? Are you seriously going to compare ONE scene where Mushu puts on Ray-Bans to the Nut Job crowbarring in a once popular song for no reason? Sorry, but they aren’t remotely the same.

  • Chris

    It’s pretty cool all the Nut Job artists came out to argue with Amid ;)

  • Jason Cezar Duncan

    These B grade movies sell for the same reasons I see Scooby Doo playing in the backs of mini vans when I drive. The bulk of people, including those with kids, are not artists/animators and don’t care. Actually they probably snicker along and even purposely watch them to get a laugh, like many of us do, from time to time. Shiny colors and wacky characters = kids like. Kids like + g rated and/or familiarity with parents = parents buy, I think we all know it deep down, and frankly, I’m not that bothered by it. I see it as a rather benign reality, although a bit irritating at times. There’s plenty of things I like, so you know what I do? Give them my time, attention, and even money if I’m really pleased. Some people act like they’re the culture police and know what’s best for EVERYONE. Sheesh, it’s like those whining nostalgia “rant” brats and Justin Bieber “haters”. If they actually shut up and put up a bit more and utilize the tool (the internet) that they litter with illiterate sounding comments and poorly produced “rant” videos, they might actually the discover the world’s a brighter place. It sounds so obvious, but all those great old songs and shows are there, archived, at the literal click of a button, tons of great new artists are around waiting for an audience, and heck, if that still doesn’t please you, you’ve never had a better chance to be that change you wanted to see. I say just be yourself and quit worrying about what “trends” with others, because at the end of the day it doesn’t mean a thing to the development of you and your character.

    • Trevor

      You know what? This is a great example of the absolute disconnect between audiences and the sentiments posted by Amid and others. Animation is made for the audience. If Scooby Doo is playing in minivans, it’s because it’s entertaining and the audience wants to see it. THAT’S why I got into animation. If you don’t think an animated work doesn’t live up to your high standard of artistry, guess what? That 6 year old doesn’t give a shit who you are or what you think. She’s just going to go on memorizing every song, playing with her toys, and reenacting it during recess. And that’s fine because it was made for her and not for you. Deny it all you want, but as far as theatrical animation goes in the US, it’s a genre and that genre is called family entertainment. That won’t change until you get off this keyboard and go try to change it.

      KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. The Nut Job was not made for you. It was made for the audience it was made for, and they enjoyed it.

  • Mike

    Oh lord. Can’t wait for The Nut Job 2: Fire and Rescue.

  • James Stanley

    Mark my words. The nut job might have hit a high now but but chances are, the coffin will come hammering down once one-of-mouth is let of the chain.
    Also why is the rat in the article picture a scrawnier version of Remi from “Ratatouille?”

    • TinTina

      I love how any stock CGI rat is immediately Remy. Because Remy had such a unique dseign, everyone who draws a rat must be ripping him off!

      Remember when Timothy Mouse ripped off the designs from American Tail? Or how Brave stole the designs from Brother Bear and just made it CGI? How dare they!!!

      Every orange squirrel is Hammy and Hammy is a rip off of Screwy Squirrel!

      • Mike

        The visual similarity between the Nut Job rat and Remy is much greater than the other examples you cited though. I would be very surprised if there was not an influence there.

        • jonhanson

          Check out the original short Surly Squirrel, the rat’s design is pretty similar and it came out way before Ratatouille.

    • Ikas

      Heck, even in real life, all the rats look the same to me. I cant tell apart one rat from its cousin.. or uncle..or brother.. or…

  • James Stanley

    Yeah but look at the RT scores of some of the films you’ve listed. Some of them make Shark Tale’s grade look astounding.
    Also “Shocking that a community that loves Tex Avery excepts everything to be UP quality”? you not really making sense here, are you implying Freleng and Avery are in the same league as “The nut Job” (which may I add, is impossible) are you wishing people appreciated simpler animated works better?

    • IJK

      “Are you wishing people appreciated simpler animated works better?”

      That one.

  • iamsam

    I hate when people mention the budget. Do you remember that Toy Story the original had a budget of 30 million? A movie only needs a crazy budget because Hollywood has inflated their own prices to make a movie.
    No reason why movies should cost as much as they do. 30 million in Japan, gets you Captain Harlock. 20 Million gets you Final Fantasy Child Advent. Good for these guys. Even Despicable Me cost 70 Million. Why Pixar movies now cost 200 million to make is beyond me.

  • zac leck

    I’d like to start by saying that this is kind of my first stop animation news site and I’ve checked it almost daily for the last couple years now. I appreciate the effort that goes into making this site possible, but I could really do without these kinds of posts. They’re highly judgmental and full of negativity and it’s just no fun shitting on projects like these, no matter how bad they are.

    I understand that Amid has his own editorial style that he likes to bring to this site, but I’m of the opinion that as a.. what do we call it these days, reporter? blogger? as a journalist, or whatever, your job is to deliver the story and leave the editorializing to the comments section.

    There was a post last week that only existed to shit on some company and it’s artists for redesigning the Charlie the Tuna character because it didn’t match Amid’s vision of the character based on designs that are over 50 years old. I’ll admit I agreed with him about the redesign, and ‘mockbuster’ movies are really bad and don’t deserve much respect, but just the same, I don’t relish any joy or amusement out of cutting other artists down and I don’t think that kind of elitist mentality should be encouraged here on the Brew.

    • Kevin

      I like you, and agree with you!

    • Rick Dolishny

      I made a similar comment. Agreed.

    • Um….Hello.

      You guys are just now realizing this? Its pretty much whatever Amid wants to write. If its positive, great. If its not, its not… If you want partial, non-judgemental reporting on Animation, this is not the website for you.

      • zac leck

        Not the first time I’m realizing it, nor the first time I’ve commented on it.

  • John

    You think 2013 was the year animated films started heavily relying on a formula?

    Take a screenwriting class. This isn’t something excluded to just animation and has been going on since the 40′s.

  • SweetHoneyMack

    The Nut Job is a straight up fraud. A re-heated, Mish Mash of an animated film.

  • George Comerci

    I’m going to have to see it before I judge, but it doesn’t look horrible.

  • Strong Enough

    sub par? This Mo****************

  • Harry Bastard

    You can lead a family to quality, but you can’t make ‘em think. Sigh. Ah, let ‘em have their cookie-cutter flicks. We’ve still got joints like Ernest & Celestine; plus, Michel’s directing a Rex feature! Woot!

  • Gunther Bumpass

    [Comment removed by editors. Per our commenting guidelines, "Defamatory, rude, or unnecessarily antagonistic comments will be deleted."]

  • Blappy

    Let’s face it, animation is dead.