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Review: Furry Vengeance Better as a Drinking Game Than a Family Flick

Brendan Fraser, Furry Vengeance Courtesy Summit Entertainment

Review in a Hurry: Perhaps the gods (and monsters) are pissed at Brendan Fraser, and they're wreaking career vengeance with this slapsticky disaster about woodland creatures defending their turf. But what did we ever do to deserve this? Save your soul (and money) and skip this furrociously awful movie.

The Bigger Picture: A failure as family entertainment, Furry might work better as a drinking game. Every time Fraser falls, gets punched in the groin/face, is pooped/peed on or sprayed by skunks...drink up! Even 3-D wouldn't have helped this dud, but maybe beer goggles will.

Fraser plays Dan Sanders, a real estate developer who transplants his wife, Tammy (Brooke Shields, looking uncomfortable), and teen son to the Oregon wilderness for a new job.

Dan oversees a supposedly ecofriendly housing project while also trying to please his evil boss, Neal Lyman (Ken Jeong). The local forest critters, who conveniently understand human-speak, discover Dan's role in the impending destruction of their habitat and rally to create havoc in his life.

From the "comedic" minds behind Mr. Woodcock (scribes Michael Carnes & Josh Gilbert) and College Road Trip (director Roger Kumble)—some red flags there!—Furry gets lost in the woods and leaves the funny far, far behind. The tedious, predictable plot, advancing at the speed of tree sap, is a lame excuse for Fraser to be repeatedly attacked and humiliated by the animal gang and raccoon ringleader. Plus, strangely, several ethnic stereotypes and broad accents played for cheap laughs leave an odor of racism amid all that skunk spray.

In the right vehicle, Fraser can be a charmer (see George of the Jungle or, more recently, Journey to the Center of the Earth), but here his character is a tough-to-root-for boob. We're just counting the minutes and moronic gags (drink!) until workaholic, misguided dad learns his lesson and joins the pro-environment cause. OK, the green message is well-meaning but still feels as overdeveloped and corporatized as Lyman's sprawling subdivision.

Frustrated Tammy says it best: "I just don't think this can get any worse."

The 180—a Second Opinion: The end credits (if you make it that far) feature a music video of castmembers spoofing other movies, including Shields' The Blue Lagoon. It's actually amusing...at least compared to everything that's come before.

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