Chickenhare and the Hamster of Darkness

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Chickenhare and the Hamster of Darkness
Chickenhare.jpg
Another beloved children's book adapted without any of the heart.
Genre: Adventure
Comedy
Directed By: Benjamin Mousquet
Ben Stassen
Produced By: Ben Stassen
Caroline Van Iseghem
Matthieu Zeller
Written By: Dave Collard
Based On: Chickenhare
by Chris Grine
Photography: Color
Cinematography: Benjamin Mousquet
Ben Stassen
Distributed By: Sony Pictures International Productions
Netflix
Release Date: January 23, 2022
Runtime: 91 minutes
Country: Belgium
France
United States
Language: English
Budget: €20 million
Box Office: $8,759,443


Chickenhare and the Hamster of Darkness is a 2022 animated comedy adventure film produced by nWave Pictures and directed by Benjamin Mousquet and Ben Stassen. It is loosely based on the graphic novel series of the same name.

Plot

20 years ago, adventuring rabbit brothers Peter and Lapin journey to find the legendary Hamster of Darkness, but instead find a baby chicken-rabbit hybrid. Peter adopts him but Lapin is discouraging of Peter's compassion. In the present, Chickenhare is obsessed with adventuring and wants to follow in his father's footsteps. After failing the test for the Adventurer's Club, he sets his sights on finding the Hamster of Darkness in order to win over the club. In his research he goes against his father's wishes and visits Lapin in prison, inadvertently allowing him to escape. Now it's a race against time to find the Hamster of Darkness before Lapin.

Bad Qualities

  1. The art style is very generic, especially compared to the art of the original series.
  2. The tone is significantly different and the message is much more palatable. The original first book had a more complex message of "it's okay to hate your abuser and be happy when they die," whereas this movie simply tells audiences that "it's okay to be yourself." The book also included mild violence and showed a bit of blood while the movie doesn't show anything like that.
  3. The changes made to the secondary characters feel unnecessary. Abe no longer has his iconic beard, Meg is changed from a mysterious creature to a generic skunk, and Banjo is nowhere to be seen.
    • The changes also tried to make Meg and Abe have something that made them special like Chickenhare. Meg being discriminated against for being a skunk can be related to Chickenhare's problem, but Abe revealing he was born without a shell was completely out of left field.
  4. The plot is boring and the characters are nothing special, making this one snore of a kid's movie.
    • The movie feels more like a boring Indiana Jones ripoff rather than in interesting mystery with serious stakes.
  5. Chickenhare is an unlikable protagonist as he is very stupid and selfish at times.

Good Qualities

  1. The addition of Chickenhare's large ears that can sprout feathers allowing him to fly is interesting, albeit predictable.
  2. The adventure was fun and interesting.
  3. The climax was dramatic.
  4. Meg was cool despite her changes.
  5. The side antagonists were funny and/or compelling.
  6. The animation is solid.