Hop: Movie Review
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For what it is – a silly, live action/animated feature film about the Easter Bunny, Hop does deliver some laughs and a good message about balancing personal dreams, responsibility, and family. This movie, releasing in time for the Easter season, surprisingly enough teaches how selfishness can grant us temporary fulfillment, but will more often than not lead to disappointment.
Many thanks to Universal Pictures for sparing us the need to wear 3D glasses. The action is fast, the colors are crisp, and for the most part, the film is amusing without the help of those bulking glasses studios are making audiences wear more and more these days.
The Movie in a Minute
Reluctant to take over the family business, E.B., the teenage son of the Easter Bunny, leaves his Easter Island home for Hollywood to pursue his dream of being a drummer. There, E.B. meets Fred, who's considered an unemployed loafer by his dad’s standards. Desperate to get rid of E.B., Fred does whatever the talkin' bunny wants, all while trying to get his life on track. The two unlikely friends soon discover what they both want in life and that they now have to fight to get it.
What Works -- and Doesn't -- in Hop
Hop found a good cast in James Marsden (Fred) and featuring the voicing talents of comedian/actor Russell Brand in the lead role as E.B., fellow Brit actor Hugh Laurie as his dad, the Easter Bunny, and voiceover king Hank Azaria, as Carlos/Phil. Russell Brand brings a the comedic flavor to the film, making it, at times, hilarious. Marsden fills in with slapstick comedy bits, keeping the mood of the film light and fun.
At its core, Hop is a story about fathers and sons. It parallels the relationship between E.B. and his traditional dad, and Fred and his unpleased father. Though the ending is haphazardly wrapped up (particularly between Marsden’s character and his dad), it does speak to the importance of keeping that relationship strong, one full of love and respect.
Problems with the film include its regard to the holiday of Easter and the overt parallels between the Easter Bunny’s chocolate factory and Santa Claus’ storied toy workshop (all the way down to the sleigh). Of course, Hop wasn’t created to present audiences with an animated commentary about the religious significance of the holiday, referencing the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It’s understandable to a point that the film doesn’t even go there. But, then again, this holiday is about much more than chocolate bunnies and Easter egg hunts. Taking kids to see Hop isn’t a bad idea; parents should just be aware of the fact that they should include Christ in the picture this Easter after leaving the theater.
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