Matthew O Callaghan
I am so glad they chose to use regular 2D animation on this one (even though there is a great deal of computer imagery), as the bubbly cartoon drawings work perfectly in contrast with the books' artwork. Not that I don't like computer-generated flicks, but I would like a little more balance. Sometimes good ol' fashioned hand drawings are the best way to go, and CURIOUS GEORGE shows why. In fact, the only really negative aspect of the film concerns the love story, which is a lot more grating than it is whimsical. It just seemed like such a forced, contrived plot progression. But hey, this is a kid's movie, and as such, I'm pretty sure the designated audience will be a whole lot more focused on watching George dart around causing mayhem than anything else.
Deleted Scenes (16:49): There are 15 of them, all of which were obviously cut to keep the pace going as quickly as possible. They're presented in storyboards, animatics, etc. so I doubt kids will have that much interest in them. Still, it's nice that they're available.
"Drawn" to George (5:08): This would be a nice featurette for kids, had it not been for the obnoxious voiceover. One of the head artists from the film shows step by step how to draw George's head, but as soon as he begins, that grating voiceover kicks in. Kids probably won't mind.
Monkying Around with Words (4:46): A nonsense featurette that explores some of George's favorite words and how they incorporate into the film.
A Very Curious Car (4:46): This shows a little about how the filmmakers went about animating the movie, centrally the car designs (based on Volkswagen). Worth watching.
Monkey in Motion (1:46): This featurette is a lot like the "Drawn to George" one. The main difference is, instead of showing step-by-step how to draw a single drawing, it shows how animation is done in its most basic form.
Games: There are four games to keep kids occupied: "Banana Hunt", "Where's George?", "Virtual Coloring Book", and "The Ever Changing Colorful Chameleon".
Also included is a Music Video (with optional Sing-A-Long) by Jack Johnson titled "Upside Down", and a Read with Your Child PSA.