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"ALPHA AND OMEGA"
(2010) (voices of Justin Long, Hayden Panettiere) (PG)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Minor Moderate Heavy Heavy Moderate
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Heavy Moderate Heavy None Minor
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Moderate None Moderate Heavy Heavy


QUICK TAKE:
Animated Adventure: Two wolves who are direct opposites fall in love after being captured by trappers and forced to go on a long journey back to their forest.
PLOT:
In a Canadian national park, two rival wolf packs seek common ground when their leaders, Winston (voice of DANNY GLOVER) and Tony (voice of DENNIS HOPPER), arrange a marriage between their first-born children. Winston's daughter, Kate (voice of HAYDEN PANETTIERE), is a hunter-gatherer "alpha wolf." Tony's son, Garth (voice of CHRIS CARMACK), is also an "alpha wolf" who secretly has a problem "finding his howl."

Alphas are forbidden to marry "omega wolfs," who are kind of the artist-entertainer types of the wolf pack. This is a problem when Kate develops feelings for the fun-loving Humphrey (voice of JUSTIN LONG) and Garth falls in love with Kate's omega-wolf sister, Lilly (voice of CHRISTINA RICCI). Kate and Humphrey are then thrust together when both are tranquilized by trappers and transported to a wildlife preserve in Idaho. This gives Garth and Lilly time to get to know each other.

Meanwhile, Tony plans to take over both packs by force when he thinks that Kate has ran off and shirked her responsibilities. Kate's mom, Eve (voice of VICKI LEWIS), spurs her husband on to prepare for war. Meanwhile, two golf-loving birds, Marcel (voice of LARRY MILLER) and Paddy (voice of ERIC PRICE), agree to help Humphrey and Kate make the long journey back to their forest.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Small kids will definitely be drawn to the film's simple storyline, lively animation, and 3-D trappings.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For rude humor and some mild action.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • HUMPHREY is a fun-loving "omega wolf," who falls in love with Kate, a warrior/hunter-gather "alpha wolf," even though it's against pack law. He is brave, but not a very good fighter. He also has a weakness for cupcakes and other sweets.
  • KATE is the alpha-wolf daughter of pack leader, Winston, who promises her in marriage to the son of a rival pack leader in order to unite the tribes. She accepts her destiny, even though she has developing feelings for Humphrey. She is a good fighter and will resort to violence if no other solution presents itself.
  • WINSTON is Kate's father and the strong, but aging leader of the Western pack of wolves. He is a fair and traditional leader who does indeed promise his daughter's paw in marriage to the son of his rival in order to bring peace.
  • EVE is Kate's mother, a deceptively ferocious female wolf who is often threatening very graphic physical violence on wolves who oppose her or pose a threat to her family and pack.
  • TONY is the duplicitous head of the rival wolf pack, who negotiates peace with Winston but is really amassing his wolves to take over the whole territory. He is a violent wolf who commands other violent wolves eager for conquest.
  • GARTH is Tony's son, a handsome wolf who is promised in marriage to a rival leader's daughter, Kate. He is not great at being an alpha wolf and has a hard time letting out traditional howls at the moon. He finds his passion, though, in the eyes of Kate's sister even though she is an "omega wolf" who is forbidden to marry.
  • LILLY is Kate's sister who falls in love with alpha wolf Garth even though she is an omega wolf and he has been promised in marriage to Kate.
  • MARCEL is a comical, French-Canadian ostrich who enjoys golf, speaks with a French accent, and helps Humphrey and Kate get back home.
  • PADDY is his loyal, British duck caddy.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this animated adventure that has been rated PG. There is no overt profanity, but colorful phrases are uttered throughout along with some mildly suggestive dialogue about mating and cross-mating.

    Violence consists largely of cartoon wolves attacking each other, leading to tussle-style fights. One wolf bears a wound after an off-screen fight, but otherwise there is no blood. However, scenes and moments of potential peril are present throughout and will likely be unsettling and/or suspenseful for various viewers. These include two separate caribou stampedes, an attack and chase involving three large bears, and a potentially deadly mudslide.

    Bad attitudes are present, as is some potentially imitative behavior, tense family material and various thematic elements.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, all sorts of camera movement (often quite bouncy, including point of view) occurs throughout the film. There is also a thunderstorm with lightning that creates a momentary strobe effect. The film is also presented in 3-D in many theaters, and the animators take several occasions to have objects seemingly "fly off the screen."



    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Kate and Humphrey are both shot with darts tipped with some kind of tranquilizer drug.
  • A human couple is said to have met at a bookstore that also sells beer.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • After a wild ride down a mountain slope in a tree trunk, Humphrey feels nauseated and goes into some brief vomit throes, making throw-up sounds.
  • One wolf eats berries and has a very messy mouth.
  • An animal's skeletal carcass -- most likely a caribou -- is shown with flies buzzing around it.
  • Kate and Humphrey drool after being shot with tranquilizer darts.
  • Humphrey accidentally drinks his own urine, thinking it's a beverage the trappers have put inside his cage. The cage is completely enclosed except for some air holes, so we don't actually see him drink the urine.
  • On several occasions, Humphrey refers to Garth as "Barf" on purpose.
  • One wolf returns to Winston's pack with a slightly bloody slash wound behind his ear on his neck.
  • Lily shows Garth a place called Rabbit Poo Mountain, which got its name because it's a favorite place for rabbits to defecate.
  • Humphrey crashes into a moose's buttocks when trying to hold onto Marcel as he took flight.
  • At a truck stop, Humphrey insists he has to urinate even though Kate implores him to hold it.
  • Humphrey eats a cupcake from the garbage. When he is spotted by the shopkeeper, he mistakes the icing on Humphrey's lips for the wolf frothing at the mouth.
  • When the shopkeeper threatens Humphrey with a rifle shot, we hear (but don't see) Humphrey lose control of his bladder.
  • As a bear stands over Humphrey from behind, the first indication that Humphrey has that there is trouble is the slobber dripping from the looming animal.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Eastern wolves invade their rival pack's territory, looking to feast after over-hunting the caribou in their territory.
  • A wolf from the Western pack calls a rival wolf a "stupid, Eastern dog."
  • Eve threatens to rip off another wolf's tail and shove it down his throat.
  • Eve advises her daughter to bite Garth to death if he tries to get fresh with her.
  • Tony steps on a flower on purpose.
  • Tony talks peace with Winston, but really schemes to take over the whole territory for the wolves in his pack.
  • Wolves swipe berries from some squirrels who had been eating them.
  • Humphrey picks up and throws a random squirrel.
  • Kate lies to Garth about needing some water.
  • On several occasions, Humphrey refers to Garth as "Barf" on purpose.
  • Humphrey contemplates eating Marcel and Paddy, especially if they don't have the information he and Kate need.
  • One wolf tells another to "shut the hole that makes the words," meaning to be quiet.
  • Eve threatens to rip a wolf's eyes out and shove them down the wolf's throat so he can see what it's like from the inside when she rips him open.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence," "Blood/Gore" and "Jump Scenes" may be unsettling, suspenseful or scary to younger viewers and/or those with low tolerance levels for such material.
  • A couple of wolves find themselves in the path of a caribou stampede. They narrowly escape being trampled when Kate comes to the rescue.
  • A small pack of scary-looking Eastern wolves invade the Winston pack's territory and have a stare down with Kate, Humphrey, and several alpha and omega wolves.
  • A storekeeper named Max finds Humphrey rifling through his garbage, goes and gets his shotgun, and fires at the fleeing wolf.
  • There is a thunderstorm in the film that could prove mildly scary to young children scared of thunder and lightning.
  • Kate hangs over a potentially deadly mudslide, but Humphrey saves her.
  • Humphrey is attacked by a bear after accidentally causing her cub to cry. The bear lunges, swipes at, and chases both Humphrey and Kate. Two other bears eventually join in the pursuit and corner the two wolves on the side of a cliff. But Humphrey kicks up an array of snowballs with his back paws, and he and Kate manage to jump off the cliff and soft land on a snowy slope below. A chase ensues on the snow, with Kate and Humphrey taking to a hollow tree trunk and sledding down the mountain with the Mama bear careening out of control in close pursuit. The two wolves eventually jump the tree trunk into an open car of a passing locomotive.
  • Wolves from Tony's pack emerge from the forest, their eyes glowing an angry red, as they prepare to attack Winston's pack.
  • A caribou stampede breaks up a large wolf battle, with the older, slower Winston and Tony forced to flee as dozens of caribou bear down on them.
  • Kate gets caught in the stampede, too, and is briefly feared dead.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • A trapper is shown loading his rifle.
  • Trappers use a rifle that fires tranquilizer darts to incapacitate Humphrey and Kate.
  • Marcel uses his golf club as a weapon to hit Humphrey over the head.
  • A storekeeper named Max finds Humphrey sifting through his garbage, goes and gets his shotgun, and fires multiple shots at the fleeing wolf.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Oh, drat!" "Get your butt out of my face," "My butt, my butt!" "Again with the butt," "You stupid Eastern dog!" "That sly dog," "Shut the hole that makes the words," "Where's Barf?" "Is this about Barf?" "He's a dud," "Holy!" "Duh!" "Oh my God," "Ah, jeez!" "Wolfpack!" "Kate is hot," "Was it good for you?" and "You're strange. You're totally weird."
  • There are at least three major sequences in the film where characters jump in a hollowed-out tree trunk and ride it down a steep snowy slope. In one sequence, two wolves jump their tree trunk into a moving train, both of them spilling out of it safely once inside the car.
  • Humphrey and his friends playfully pile on each other, yelling, "Wolfpack!"
  • One wolf eats berries in a messy manner, resulting in a dirty mouth.
  • Tony steps on a flower on purpose.
  • Wolves swipe berries from some squirrels who had been eating them.
  • Humphrey picks up and throws a random squirrel.
  • Humphrey spits out some distasteful berries.
  • During an evening song-and-dance sequence, a bunch of caribou lift up their bottoms and "moon" the wolves.
  • Kate lies to Garth about needing some water.
  • Paddy works out Marcel's aches and pains by cracking his back, jumping on his joints, and pulling his limbs. Each time he does this, there is a audible crunching sound followed by Marcel either wincing or crying out in temporary pain.
  • At a truck stop, Humphrey sifts through some garbage and finds a cupcake, which he then proceeds to eat.
  • A human male is shown with multiple tattoos.
  • This same human is shown driving fast along a winding, wooded road.
  • Kate and Humphrey hide in the back of his truck in order to gain free passage to Canada.
  • Humphrey hangs out the back of the truck as it is in motion.
  • Kate and Humphrey throw snowballs at each other.
  • Kate and Humphrey stow away in one of the box cars of a train.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • While careening down a mountain slope, Kate suddenly runs into a tree that she and the audience didn't see coming.
  • A bear looms over Humphrey after he inadvertently causes her cub to cry. The bear lunges and roars into the camera on several occasions and eventually is joined by other snarling bears much larger than the main wolf characters.
  • While flying alongside a train in motion, Marcel and Paddy slam into a large sign that comes out of nowhere.
  • There are several scenes in the movie where wolves jump into frame while running that could cause jump reactions in some audience members seeing the film in 3-D.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A heavy amount of tense music occurs throughout the film, especially during scenes where Humphrey and Kate are in peril.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 use each of "Oh my God" and "Ah, Jeez!" One character yells out "Holy," but does not complete the intended phrase.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • During an evening song-and-dance sequence, a bunch of caribou lift up their bottoms and "moon" the wolves.
  • Eve advises her daughter to bite Garth to death if he tries to get fresh with her.
  • Kate walks up to a wolf gathering in slow-motion as the other male wolves ogle her. One says, "Kate is hot."
  • Humphrey's friends remind him that alpha and omega wolves can "eat together," they just can't "howl together" implying sexual relations.
  • Later, Garth intimates to Lily in so many words that an alpha and omega are forbidden by pack law to be mates.
  • The first time we see Garth, he is walking up in slow-motion and Kate and Lilly look at him in a sexually attracted way.
  • A double entendre occurs when one wolf says to another wolf, "Was it good for you?"
  • We come to learn that the trappers who tranquilized Kate and Humphrey and drove them from Canada to a protected preserve in Idaho did so in order for them to mate and make baby wolves -- something Humphrey is all gung-ho for when he learns this.
  • Kate wakes up in the back of a truck wearing a human female's bra.
  • On a few occasions throughout the film, wolves kiss by rubbing noses.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Winston and Tony seek to unite their rival packs by arranging a marriage between their respective oldest children, Kate and Garth, even though the two younger wolves are not in love with each other.
  • Kate's sister, Lily, falls in love with Garth, but keeps it from her.
  • Kate eventually declares her love for Humphrey, going against her father's wishes for the arranged marriage.
  • Garth eventually defies his father's wishes, too, and proclaims his love for Lily.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Pack rivalry and territorial fights among wild animals, specifically wolves.
  • Arranged marriages.
  • National forests and wildlife preservation.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Humphrey and his friends playfully pile on each other, yelling, "Wolfpack!"
  • While running through the forest, Kate bangs into a tree.
  • Eastern wolves invade their rival pack's territory, looking to feast after over-hunting the caribou in their territory. Some wolves tussle and Kate jumps into the fray. Mooch dives on the pack of wolves and pins them down with his large body.
  • Eve threatens to rip off another wolf's tail and shove it down his throat.
  • Eve advises her daughter to bite Garth to death if he tries to get fresh with her.
  • Humphrey picks up and throws a random squirrel.
  • Marcel hits Humphrey with one of his golf clubs.
  • An extended sequence has Humphrey chasing Marcel and Paddy and hitching a ride on Marcel's legs, followed by a long flight through the woods in which Humphrey bangs into trees, branches, and even into the buttocks of a moose before eventually crashing.
  • Paddy works out Marcel's aches and pains by cracking his back, jumping on his joints, and pulling his limbs. Each time he does this, there is a audible crunching sound followed by Marcel either wincing or crying out in temporary pain.
  • Eve threatens to rip a wolf's eyes out and shove them down the wolf's throat so he can see what it's like from the inside when she rips him open.
  • A storekeeper named Max finds Humphrey sifting through his garbage, goes and gets his shotgun, and fires multiple shots at the fleeing wolf.
  • Kate hangs over a potentially deadly mudslide, but Humphrey saves her.
  • Humphrey is attacked by a bear after accidentally causing her cub to cry. The bear lunges, swipes at, and chases both Humphrey and Kate. Two other bears eventually join in the pursuit and corner the two wolves on the side of a cliff. But Humphrey kicks up an array of snowballs with his back paws, and he and Kate manage to jump off the cliff and soft land on a snowy slope below. A chase ensues on the snow, with Kate and Humphrey taking to a hollow tree trunk and sledding down the mountain with the Mama bear careening out of control in close pursuit. The two wolves eventually jump the tree trunk into an open car of a passing locomotive.
  • Marcel and Paddy fly alongside a train Humphrey and Kate are traveling in, but eventually slam into a sign. Both are not seriously injured, though.
  • Eve pounces on Humphrey and tries to choke him. Kate intervenes.
  • Wolves from both packs fight, mostly tackling each other and rolling around on the ground. A caribou stampede scatters most of the wolves. But the older Winston and Tony get caught up in the stampede and are nearly trampled when Kate and Humphrey come to the rescue in another sled-like hollow tree trunk. The tree eventually hits a bump and comes to a stop, with Humphrey, Winston, and Tony able to take cover behind it. But Kate gets caught in the stampede and is lightly trampled by the last of the caribou. She is knocked unconscious briefly, and the wolves fear she is dead. But she wakes up.



  • Reviewed September 12, 2010 / Posted September 17, 2010

    Other new reviews available this week include:

    [Exodus: Gods and Kings] [The Hobbit:  The Battle of the Five Armies] [The Imitation Game] [Top Five]

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