Through a series of misunderstandings, Alvin, Simon and Theodore come to believe that Dave is going to propose to his new girlfriend in Miami…and dump them. They have three days to get to him and stop the proposal, saving themselves not only from losing Dave but possibly from gaining a terrible stepbrother.
When I told my 9 year-old nephew that I received press invites to see “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip,” I’m sure you can imagine his face. Think of Puss in Boots from “Shrek,” when he looks up at you with the biggest, saddest eyes, minus the claws and sword. So with that look, off we went, my nephew, my sister, and I. I had a feeling that the theater would be pretty full but it far exceeded my expectations when it was booked to capacity. There were literally no seats left.
And for a kids movie, that’s a good thing. There is nothing better than sitting in a crowded theater full of children because once the fun begins, their contagious laughter can crack even the most hardened Scrooge.
As the movie begins, we discover that Dave (Jason Lee) is now a successful music producer spending much of his time in the recording studio. When Alvin, Simon, and Theodore decide to throw him a surprise birthday party, things get out of control and as the party begins to grow, thanks to everyone talking about it on Twitter and Facebook, when Dave comes home, he throws everyone out and grounds the trio. He then informs them that he is getting ready to take a trip to Miami with his girlfriend Shira (Kimberly Williams-Paisley) and that their next-door neighbor will be keeping an eye on them.
When Alvin discovers an engagement ring in one of Dave’s bags, he shows it to Simon and Theodore and assuming the worst, that Dave will marry Shira and move her and her irksome and irritating son Miles (Josh Green) into their house and disown them for all the mayhem they have caused, they devise a plan to follow Dave to Miami and do whatever it takes to disrupt his surprise engagement.
Of course it isn’t that simple. With Miles despising the Chipmunks at the thought of all of them becoming family, and the Chipmunks feeling the exact same way about him, they must put all of their animosity aside and work together, if their plan to stop the engagement is to work. After managing to abscond from the house and their nosy neighbor, the foursome inadvertently cause mayhem on a Florida-bound flight which is cut short and they are escorted off the plane by Benson (Tony Hale), an Air Marshall who thinks of himself as the Clint Eastwood of the sky. After embarrassing him in his office and then managing to sneak out unnoticed, he follows their trail which takes them to Texas, New Orleans, and eventually Miami.
At every turn, Benson is waiting for them, overreaching his jurisdiction as an Air Marshall but his badge obviously makes him feel unstoppable. Fortunately, the occasional brick wall, sign post and burly Texas bouncer, help him realize that he is indeed stoppable.
Naturally, being a kids movie, everything works out in the end but what made this movie enjoyable, was the children’s laughter that surrounded me from beginning to end. A movie can’t be all that bad if every kid in the theater is laughing heartily at it. I would have to agree.
This movie opens the same day as Star Wars so if you happen to find yourself out of luck trying to get into a screening, this movie will be a fun way to spend a few hours.
In theaters December 18th
For more info about James visit his website www.IrishFilmCritic.com