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  • Gareth Crook

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget (2023) - 6/10

Do we need another Chicken Run film? Of course we bloody do! After a quick recap of where we left off, 23 years ago, dear god! We find Rocky (Zachary Levy) and Ginger (Thandiwe Newton) (controversially with new voices) living in chicken island paradise, raising baby Molly (Bella Ramsey) alongside the supporting cast from the old days. All is going well, until teenage Molly spots there’s…. another island! Ginger isn’t keen to go back to where danger lurks. Has she lost her bottle, she’s a mum now, has responsibilities. Can she shelter Molly from the dangers of the outside world or is Molly a chip off the old block? I don’t need to answer that do I. Hooking up with Frizzle (Jodie Sedgwick-Davies), the sheltered  pair are excited to go to Fun Land (Chicken) Farm, which is not what they bargained for. Cue a high security prison break, not just for Molly and Frizzle, but every damn bird! The gags are classic Aardman and there’s plenty of visual trickery, but it does take a little while to get going. There's tropes and cultural reference points galore, but of course all for comic effect. Molly tries to rescue Frizzle, Rocky tries to rescue Molly and Ginger and the gang are there to shambolically take on the evil humans enslaving chickenkind. There are a lot of similarities to the original and other Aardman productions, but it’s playful with it. Modernising deftly, but not matching its predecessor. Fair enough, the bar was high.



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