Warner Bros. Pictures
Warner Bros. Pictures
Review in a Hurry: Hey, Boo Boo! The "smarter than the average bear" with an insatiable appetite for "pic-a-nic" baskets gets a very average big-screen makeover. Little Boo Boos might giggle at the slapstick, but most folks over the age of 5 will find the tired plot and lame jokes unbearable.
The Bigger Picture: Warner Bros. should have left the beloved Hanna-Barbera character in hibernation until it had developed a snappier script for his 3D CGI debut. Though Dan Aykroyd and Justin Timberlake effectively recreate the original voices, this live-action/animation hybrid doesn't capture the goofy charm of the 1960s cartoon.
Hundred-year-old Jellystone Park—home to rascally, snack-nabbing Yogi Bear (Aykroyd) and faithful sidekick Boo Boo (Timberlake)—is in danger of being closed due to low funds and poor attendance. Hoping to line his own pockets and finance a gubernatorial campaign, Mayor Brown (Andrew Daly) schemes to sell off all the forestland to loggers. Oh no, kids!
Their habitat threatened, Yogi Bear and Boo Boo join forces with Ranger Smith (Tom Cavanagh), his annoyingly boneheaded deputy (T.J. Miller) and nature-documentary filmmaker Rachel (Anna Faris). Together they throw a centennial celebration to raise money, but the more Yogi tries to help, the more he messes things up. Can he finally save the day and the park?
Visually, the film is fine. The New Zealand shooting locations are lovely and lush. The CGI blends seamlessly into live-action scenes, and the 3D thrusts water sprays, fireworks, frog tongues and other fun stuff in your face.
But the script is just so darn flat. You don't need special glasses to see dopey gags and plot points coming from miles away. The love that blossoms between botany nerds Smith and Rachel lacks any pizzazz. And raspy Cavanagh looks uncomfortable playing straight man opposite perky Faris and digitized critter costars.
The 180—a Second Opinion: An action sequence involving a flying, basket-swiping contraption and a raft ride over waterfalls generates some excitement. It'll probably inspire a Yogi Bear theme-park ride.