REVIEW: ‘Alpha and Omega’

Director:
Anthony Bell, Ben Gluck
Cast:
Justin Long
Hayden Panettiere
Dennis Hopper
Danny Glover
Viki Lewis
Chris Carmack
Larry Miller
Eric Price
Rated: PG

Here is a film that is basically all that is wrong with animated films for kids.

The film follows Humphrey (Long), a wolf who is an ‘omega,’ one of the lower level wolves. Humphrey’s good friend, though, who he also has his heart set on, Kate, is an ‘alpha’ and the daughter of the leader of the clan which unfortunately means that the two can’t be together because of the laws that the wolves have.

Another reason why it’s impossible for the two to be together is that Kate must marry the son of the leader of a rival wolf clan. The son is named Garth (Carmack), but before Kate and Garth can meet to get to know each other, Kate and Humphrey are tranquilized and taken to a different wild life preserve. So now the two must get back to their home and at the same time, Humphrey has to try to win Kate’s heart before they get back.

The story of the film is generic through and through. There’s the Romeo & Juliet plot of two rival clans, there’s the guy who’s out of his league trying to win over the popular girl and finally there’s the let’s find our way home story. All of these threads are so stock and the movie doesn’t offer anything new.

Movies with unoriginal premises can still work through execution. How to Train Your Dragon, for example, was great even though it was a traditional boy and his dog story.

Alpha and Omega just doesn’t do anything innovative or fresh with its age-old ideas.

A reason for this was the characters, who were also completely stock. Kate’s father was the brave, heroic leader where Garth’s was the dark brooding ‘Scar-like’ character. Then there was Humphrey who’s the typical underdog. There are also two very random bird characters Marcel (Miller) and Paddy (Price). They are introduced and given some screentime but then they disappear and have no effect on the third act.

Not even the animation looked nice in this film. I understand that this is a smaller animation company and that’s fine, but the fact that the film is lacking in engagement and emotion just makes the poor animation even more apparent.

Overall, this film is just worthless. There is no substance here, just annoying things like the wolves howling sounding like a pop song. This is a 1 out of 5.

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Author: Matthew Liedke

My name is Matthew Liedke. I'm a reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer in Minnesota, but I also have a passion for the art of film. This passion led me to start writing about film in 2008. From 2008-2016 I wrote pieces at my own website, After the Movie Reviews. Then, from 2016-May 2018, my write-ups were featured on AreaVoices, a blog network run by Forum Communications Company. Today, I now write film reviews and other pieces here on Word Press. More about me: I'm a 2012 graduate of Minnesota State University Moorhead where I studied journalism and film. Outside of film, I enjoy sports, video games, anime and craft beers.

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