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'Gnomeo...' isn't just a kid-friendly hoot

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POSTED: March 18, 2011 10:05 a.m.
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It's animated, but "Gnomeo and Juliet" is creative enough to entertain more than just children.

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I’ve got a riddle for you. What’s small and funny and wears a pointy hat?
A lawn gnome, of course!
And there were more gnomes than you could shake a garden hose at in the animated feature “Gnomeo and Juliet,” which is in theaters now.
Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” has seen its fair share of adaptations, but “Gnomeo and Juliet” has got to be the most creative I’ve ever seen.
It all begins in England with two neighbors, Mr. Capulet and Mrs. Montague. The two hate each other for reasons unknown. Capulet’s home and yard are red and so are the pointy little hats on his backyard garden gnomes. Montague’s yard and gnomes are painted blue, and, you guessed it, reds hate blues.
Enter our star-crossed lovers.
Gnomeo is voiced by James McAvoy (soon to star in “X-Men First Class” as the young Charles Xavier) and Juliet is voiced by Emily Blount, who I saw last in “The Adjustment Bureau.”
During their difficult romance, Gnomeo battles Tybalt, voiced wonderfully by action star Jason Statham, while Juliet is consoled by Nanette, a frog statue with a water spigot in her mouth. The lovers soon meet Featherstone, a wacky plastic pink flamingo who serves as their version of Friar Lawrence. Nanette and Featherstone steal every scene they’re in.
So, will “Gnomeo and Juliet” end tragically or happily? I leave that for you to find out. I will say, however, that I’m a fan!
Take your tykes to see this one and you’ll be pleasantly rewarded. I saw this one with my godson, 5-year-old Victor Alexander.
We watched in 3D, but you may want to stick to 2D for kids younger than 5. They get tired of wearing those glasses and you won’t miss much anyway.
By the way, the music for this film was wonderful. We have Sir Elton John to thank for that. And if you watch this film you also will enjoy the voice acting talent of Michael Caine, Ozzy Osbourne and Hulk Hogan. I kid you not!

The video version of this review will be posted late Friday.

 

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