Review: 'Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers' movie is much funnier than it should be

"Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" 2022 movie poster.

"Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" 2022 movie poster. (Disney)



Estimated read time: 6-7 minutes

HOLLYWOOD — When I heard they were remaking "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers," I was excited for a few reasons. I loved that show as a child, and my 5-year-old is obsessed with the original series now that it's on Disney+. So, I was excited for both of us.

Then I heard it was a movie and not a TV show. That threw me off a little, but I was still on board. And when the trailer for the film was released, my head was spinning.

The new "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" is a mix of animation and live-action, much like "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," and is almost an "E! True Hollywood Story" about Chip and Dale after their moment in the sun with their wildly popular TV show. The trailer made me chuckle, but all I could think about was what a risk this movie was.

Then and there I decided that this movie was either going to be a big swing and a miss or hilarious and entertaining. I'm happy to say that "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" is very much in the latter category, and I'll tell you why.

It's clever Hollywood satire

Satire is not an easy thing to pull off, especially when it's in a family film, but I think "Rescue Rangers" pulls it off. The movie isn't up there with brilliant satires like "Jojo Rabbit," "Get Out" or "This is Spinal Tap," but it is surprisingly clever and smart.

The film pokes fun at Hollywood — our obsession with celebrity and their obsession of staying in the spotlight. The way Tinseltown is happy to love you when you're on top but kick you to the curb when you're no longer of interest. How fame can take you down dark paths and many will do anything to hold onto that lifestyle, no matter the cost.

It sounds like a lot for a film about two chipmunks dressed up as Indiana Jones and Magnum P.I., but the film satirizes these situations and it's hilarious. Knowing that Flounder from "The Little Mermaid" is caught up in the shady underworld of Hollywood and that Monterey Jack is addicted to stinky cheese makes for hilarious and unexpected satire.

I was all in on the story

Look, the plot of "Rescue Rangers" is familiar: Two estranged buddies are forced to work together to find their friend. The twists and turns are expected and the outcome is inevitable, but the way it is told is anything but conventional.

I will warn there may be some minor spoilers here, but I am just too excited to tell you about the story setup.

Chip and Dale had a successful show for three years and they were on top of the world. Then, due to some egos and hurt feelings, the show was canceled, and the stars went their separate ways.

Thirty years later, Dale now tries to sell autographs at comic conventions while Chip is working a 9-to-5 job. The two don't speak.

They are thrown back together when they find out their old co-star, Monterey Jack, is in deep to some shady folks thanks to his stinky cheese addiction. In an effort to help their friend, the estranged besties must work together navigating menacing muppets, beloved childhood characters turned kingpins and a sinister bootlegging operation.

The absurdity of it all is right there in your face and that's what makes it so much fun.

Best of all, it's funny

I was laughing out loud so many times during this movie. The jokes are fast and constant, and I will be watching it again to catch a few more. Not every joke lands, and some of it is just plain stupid, but the majority of the humor lands like a veteran pilot easing onto a wide, empty runway on a windless day.

The voice talent lends to the hilarity. Comedian John Mulaney voices Chip and "SNL" and "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" star Andy Samberg voices Dale. The cast also includes Will Arnett, Keegan-Michael Key, Eric Bana, Seth Rogen, J.K. Simmons, Flula Borg, Dennis Haysbert and KiKi Layne.

The long-time voice of Chip and Dale, Tress MacNeille, also gets her time in the sun.

The film was directed by one of Samberg's comedic partners, Akiva Schaffer, who also directed the cult favorite "Hot Rod."

Samberg and Mulaney's humor has its fingerprints all over the movie. I am personally a big fan of it. But if they are not your speed, then this is not your movie.

My kids loved it

While I got a kick out of this movie it's ultimately for the kiddos — and mine had a ball. Much of the satire will fly right over kids' heads, but there is still a lot going on to keep them entertained and laughing. I've spent the last week with all three of my kids asking, "Do you remember the part where …" and insert any number of funny scenes.

My 5-year-old, who is a "Rescue Rangers" fan, loved the movie, as did my 9- and 11-year-olds.

There are some "adult" things going on — or at least adult-adjacent. Addiction, black market dealings and kidnappings for example. But they are dealt with in a humorous way that includes a lot of cheese and terribly made movies.

Should I watch it?

If you are a fan of this type of odd humor, as I am, then I would say you will get a kick out of "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers." If you hate movies like "Hot Rod" or TV shows like "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," then I suggest steering clear of the movie and finding something else for family movie night.

"Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" officially starts streaming on Disney+ on Friday and is rated PG for mild action and rude/aggressive humor.

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John has grown up around movies and annoys friends and family with his movie facts and knowledge. He also has a passion for sports and pretty much anything awesome, and it just so happens, that these are the three things he writes about.

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