Directed by Roger Kumble
“Furry Vengeance” is rated PG for some rude humor, mild language and brief smoking.
First off, Ken Jeong is definitely this film’s MVP as Neal Lyman. He’s delightfully evil and you can tell his improvisations take the otherwise dull scenes to the next level. Whether he’s harassing his assistant or his mother on the other end of the phone, Jeong steals every scene he’s in.
It’s also a lot of fun to see who has cameo roles in the movie. Along with Jeong is Angela Kinsey from “The Office” as Felder. While Jeong eclipses her in every scene, it’s still fun to see her in the role as the evil assistant. Wallace Shawn also has an amusing cameo as a psychiatrist showing Dan some odd inkblot tests. Gerry Bednob from “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” also has an appearance as Mr. Gupta. He’s not nearly used to his full potential, but it’s fun seeing him on the screen with Ken Jeong and the others.
But let’s face it, the real stars of the movie are the animals. You can tell the creators were trying to create a live action Looney Tunes of sorts and to some degree they achieve that. The raccoon is like Bugs Bunny and Dan Sanders is a kinder and gentler Elmer Fudd. In fact, you half expect him to say, “Be vewy quiet! I’m hunting wacoons.” There are a few funny animal gags, most notably a scene where Dan faces a car-full of skunks. And while the animals don’t talk, we do occasionally see thought balloons from them on the screen. A thought balloon featuring “Braveheart” scenes generates some good laughs.
A good family film is entertaining for both kids and adults. While adults may find “Furry Vengeance” tolerable, it’s the kids that will get the most enjoyment out of it. I took an 8 year old and a 5 year old and both enjoyed it immensely. I was more entertained by seeing my kids laugh than by anything in the movie.
What Didn’t Work:
I also have to say I started rooting for Dan halfway through this movie. The animals’ form of “Furry Vengeance” seems to be to kill Dan. They roll a boulder towards his car, knock him off a cliff, attack him in an outhouse, etc. The penalty for cutting down a tree is death (Did PETA write this script?). It doesn’t help matters that Dan’s family seems unnecessarily harsh towards him as he suffers from the attacks. His wife seems completely unbelieving and unsympathetic towards him that he’s being tortured. His teenage son is surly and whiny. If it seems that the world is out to get Dan, it’s because it is. So in the end while we’re supposed to be rooting for the cute furry animals, suddenly paving their homes over with suburbs doesn’t seem like that bad of an idea. It’s us or them!
The sympathy for Brendan Fraser goes beyond just his on screen character. As you see him covered in feces, getting hit in the crotch repeatedly, and generally acting as a punching bag, you start thinking, “Wow, this is a long way from ‘The Mummy’ movies.” It’s kind of sad to see.
The movie also ends with the actors at the end singing and dancing during the credits. It gets more and more elaborate as they dress up like the characters from “Grease” and even “The Blue Lagoon.” It’s alternately cheesy and amusing, but you start thinking they actually put more effort into the credits than the movie itself. It’s kind of a shame.
Finally, what’s up with the title? Did the creators ever Google “furry” online?
The Bottom Line: