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Home on the Range (2004)

Bust a Moo.

Rating: 4/10

Running Time: 76 minutes

US Certificate: PG UK Certificate: U

And with that, it was all over. Sixty-seven years after Walt Disney first dazzled cinema audiences the world over with ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarves’, the Mouse-Corp has brought its days of 2D animation clunking to an end with a 76-minute film about cows. Seriously, it’s enough to make you cry.

With CGI success stories like Finding Nemo and Shrek now ruling the animation roost, Disney chief Michael Eisner says old school cell toons are officially past it. After watching a lame production like ‘Home on the Range’, you might well find yourself agreeing with him. But no – don’t let them pull the wool over your eyes. Disney are wimping out. It’s not the style of animation that has caused all of their recent non-Pixar efforts to flop. It’s everything else. It’s the writing, it’s the stories, it’s the music. Those are the things that the Pixar movies get right and films like ‘Home on the Range’ have been getting horribly wrong. The sad thing is, instead of correcting those problems and bringing in some fresh talent to rectify matters, Disney are taking the coward’s way out and pulling the plug. Shame on Disney. Shame on Eisner. Shame on all of them.

Anyway, ranting aside, I suppose I should give a brief synopsis of what this uninspiring little cartoon is all about. Things kick-off at the Patch of Heaven dairy farm, where all is rosy for people and animals alike – that is until the bank start demanding 750 big ones or they’ll put the whole place up for auction. So the three pluckiest bovines (voiced by Roseanne Barr, Judi Dench and Jennifer Tilly) take it upon themselves to try and raise the cash by capturing wanted cattle-rustler Alameda Slim (Randy Quaid) and claiming the reward money.

The very youngest of kiddies should find it just about entertaining enough to hold their attention, but parents should prepare themselves for 76 minutes of checking their watches and staring at the walls. It’s actually quite depressing to think how rapidly Disney’s 2-D output has gone downhill since the likes of ‘Aladdin’, The Lion King and The Little Mermaid. I mean, seriously – an adventure story where the heroes are COWS?? Unfortunately, that’s just nowhere near good enough. What a load of bull.

It's Got: Three little pigs and a billy-goat gruff.

It Needs: To cut out the yodelling and give us some proper, fun, tunes.


Disney’s once-great 2-D machine bows out with a whimper.