Who's in It:
Voices of Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, Wanda Sykes, William Shatner, Nick Nolte, Thomas Haden Church, Allison Janney
The Basics: A shifty raccoon enlists the help of forest creatures to steal food from a wasteful suburban McMansion development to stave off an angry bear. Kids will love it. Grown-ups will play Guess the Celebrity Voice and then forget they ever saw it.
What's the Deal? It's Madagascar in the suburbs. And if you've seen Madagascar or The Wild or Ice Age or Shark Tale or Chicken Little or [Insert any other cute animated animal movie here], then you will note that Over the Hedge is a little better than any of the ones on that list. But better doesn't mean great. It's funny enough and pointed enough (it wants to be satirical; more on that in a second), but not enough of either to make you forget Thumper. Or Flower. Or even Stitch.
Great Moment; I Know I Just Said It Wasn't Great, But Here's Its Moment of Greatness: Close to the end and this doesn't really count as a spoiler there's a scene in which the hyperactive squirrel (the most endearing and well-designed character in the movie) drinks a caffeinated energy drink. I won't divulge any more details, but it kind of makes the whole 85 minutes worthwhile.
Celebrity Voice-a-Thon Hey, Hollywood, serious about cutting budgets in these lean times? Why are you shelling out for these famous voices when kids don't care and all it does for adults is cause internal dissonance. You're like, "Oh, that's William Shatner. And that's Garry Shandling as the turtle." It's pointless.
Satire Is in the Wallet of the Beholder: So, this movie is poking pointed fun at suburban waste, excess and consumerism, right? Then why are these animals all over the place on Wal-Mart commercials every single time I turn on my television?