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Film Review: CHICKEN RUN: DAWN OF THE NUGGET (2023): Long Awaited Sequel is One of the Most Enjoyable Animated Films of the Year

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Frizzle Molly Chicken Run Dawn Of The Nugget

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget Review

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget (2023) Film Review, a movie directed by Sam Fell, written by Karey Kirkpatrick, John O’Farrell and Rachel Tunnard and starring Thandiwe Newton, Zachary Levi, Bella Ramsey, Imelda Staunton, David Bradley, Jane Horrocks, Romesh Ranganathan, Daniel Mays, Josie Sedgwick-Davies, Peter Serafinowicz, Nick Mohammed and Miranda Richardson.

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, directed by Sam Fell, is a long-awaited animated sequel that has everything you’d expect from a follow-up to the much loved original Chicken Run from 2000. There are laughs, suspense and daring escapes all showcasing chickens who are trying to flee from being made into nuggets by the vicious Mrs. Tweedy (voice of the great Miranda Richardson). Fell’s new movie shows that animation has come a long way from 23 years ago and Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget has plenty of wonderful, colorful and fast-paced scenes that are going to appeal to children of pretty much all ages.

A chicken named Ginger (Thandiwe Newton) and her rooster husband, Rocky (Zachary Levi), have escaped to an island where they are raising their young daughter, Molly (Bella Ramsey) as the film begins. Ginger and her significant other sort of have a, for lack of a better word, “rocky” history, having escaped a chicken farm where they would have almost certainly been turned into food. They are protective of Molly– perhaps a little too much. However, they have good reasons to try to keep her safe from the harm that awaits outside of the island. Fun-Land Farms is a place where Tweedy and her team bait chickens to come to have a good time and escape their ordinary lives. Except, if they go there, they’ll never come out alive if Tweedy has anything to say about it.

There’s a cute purplish character called Frizzle (a charming Josie Sedgwick-Davies) who Molly befriends. Molly’s friendship with Frizzle will eventually lead to Ginger putting everything on the line in the name of family and, to go one step further, Ginger will try to save all living chickens.

Plenty of fun awaits the viewer in this new movie that will keep audiences on their toes as they root for our hero chickens to escape a factory where Tweedy plans on making nuggets out of the group of hoodwinked chickens. The factory sequences have some really interesting developments such as when our heroes find themselves trapped with no way out. Rocky has already dived into a no-win situation where the climb up to escape the factory is almost impossible. So what do our heroes do? They pop popcorn that will slowly raise them out of their situation but escaping the factory will not be easy as Tweedy puts chickens under a trance that will lead them to certain doom unless Ginger and Rocky can help save the day. Molly may even be able to help too.

Molly learns a lot about life through her experiences and, in turn, so do her parents who discover that maybe living on an island isn’t the best answer to life’s problems. Our chicken heroes fight back against the odds and the results are hugely entertaining from beginning to end.

There are some colorful supporting characters such as a rat named Nick (Romesh Ranganathan) and another one called Fetcher (Daniel Mays) as well as the wise-beyond-his-years Fowler (David Bradley) who joins the mission to rescue Molly. It is debatable if the movie is better than the first but it’s certainly as enjoyable to watch as the original. There are expressive characters. Their eyes help express their feelings and emotions and the stop motion animation has improved since the first movie. The characters’ teeth also help give quirky distinct personalities to our heroes, as odd as that may sound.

Molly is quite charismatic and a nice addition to the Chicken Run franchise. She has a big heart and dreams of living a full life. Ramsey’s voice work is clever and captures the sweetness of Molly to a tee. Newton’s Ginger is the main star here as Newton captures the essence of a mother who will do anything for her daughter. Levi has some funny moments as well as Rocky.

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget has a really despicable villain in Tweedy. Richardson is perfect at capturing the wickedness of her character here who wields an ax at one point but the movie is never really too scary except maybe for the youngest of viewers. Audiences four-years-old and up should be able to really get involved in the story line which is all about bringing our chickens together to escape the villainous Tweedy once and for all.

Netflix deserves kudos for bringing another Chicken Run movie into fruition. People may have wanted this movie 10 or 15 years ago but it’s better to come now than never. You may not look at a chicken nugget the same way again after seeing this animated gem. Well, at least for a little while anyway. Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget isn’t just one of the most enjoyable animated movies of the year, it’s one of the most entertaining movies of the year, period.

Rating: 8.5/10

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