A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit includes some mildly scary images of the were-rabbit's transformation -- first in shadow and then in person. These images follow the werewolf pattern, with teeth, fur, paws, and snout indicating the beast's emergence. The townsfolk and one hunter in particular pursue the were-rabbit, with guns and garden tools (again, following classic horror conventions, as in Frankenstein). Characters drink at a party, and make occasional bawdy, Benny-Hillish sexual references, most of which will go over little ones' heads.
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What's the story?
In WALLACE & GROMIT: THE CURSE OF THE WERE-RABBIT, Wallace and Gromit run a pest-riddance company, Anti-Pesto. Each night, they're alerted by the elaborate security system the townspeople have attached to their prized vegetable gardens, and go forth in their well-outfitted truck to capture (but never kill) the offending creatures -- typically rodents and rabbits. Wallace then deposits the animals in cages in his basement, where he keeps them supplied with carrots and lettuce. Wallace's desire to reprogram the bunnies so they won't desire veggies leads to an experiment that goes awry, and soon a giant were-rabbit is stomping through the town at night, ravaging the squashes and pumpkins, and threatening to shut down Tottington Hall's annual Giant Vegetable Competition. Wallace and Gromit are on the case.
Is it any good?
By turns antic and lovely, this is a fitting big-screen debut for the beloved claymation stars Wallace (voiced by Peter Sallis) and Gromit. At once a clever send-up of classic horror movies (of 1930s-'40s sort, including Wolfman and Frankenstein), an entertaining assembly of wordplay and visual gags, and even a bit of an insightful character study, How does Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit set up a nice tension between the very cute rabbits who are, admittedly, gobbling up the town's vegetable gardens and the monstrous were-rabbit? reportedly took five years to make, as Nick Park and Steve Box and a crew of hundreds posed each clay figure frame by frame.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the enduring friendship between Wallace and his dog Gromit. How is this relationship a model of loyalty, trust, and affection set against the conniving and pettiness among the humans? And how is their friendship briefly threatened by Wallace's romantic interest in Lady Tottington (who ends up being a terrific good sport too)?
How does Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit set up a nice tension between the very cute rabbits who are, admittedly, gobbling up the town's vegetable gardens and the monstrous were-rabbit?
- In theaters: October 5, 2005
- On DVD or streaming: February 7, 2006
- Cast: Helena Bonham Carter, Peter Sallis, Ralph Fiennes
- Director: Nick Park
- Studio: DreamWorks
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Topics: Adventures, Friendship, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Run time: 85 minutes
- MPAA rating: G
- MPAA explanation: all audiences
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