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With: (voices) Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, Wanda Sykes, William Shatner, Nick Nolte, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Avril Lavigne, Allison Janney, Thomas Haden Church, Omid Djalili
Written by: Len Blum, Lorne Cameron, David Hoselton, Karey Kirkpatrick, based on the comic strip by Michael Fry, T. Lewis
Directed by: Tim Johnson, Karey Kirkpatrick
MPAA Rating: PG for some rude humor and mild comic action
Running Time: 83
Date: 04/22/2006

Over the Hedge (2006)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Suburban Assault

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Created by Michael Fry and T. Lewis, the "Over the Hedge" comic strip takes a satirical look at the differences between woodland creatures and suburban humans; the creatures, specifically the raccoon R.J., the turtle Verne and the squirrel Hammy appropriate what they can use and make fun of the rest. The new Dreamworks CGI animated feature ignores much of the satire and tries to cram the rest into the usual kids movie format; the theme is exactly the same as that of the new Aardman film Flushed Away. R.J. (voiced by Bruce Willis) steals a winter's worth of food from a bear (voiced by Nick Nolte) and cons the other creatures into helping him steal it all back -- from the backyards of neighboring suburbia. R.J. must sustain his lie while learning about family. There's even an exterminator character that closely resembles the one used in The Ant Bully. (Is there no creativity left?) Nevertheless, Over the Hedge has some funny moments and avoids much of the usual offensive stuff. Garry Shandling and Steve Carell provide voices for Verne and Hammy, respectively.

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