61°
Cloudy
TUE
 77°
 56°
WED
 80°
 52°
THU
 89°
 53°
FRI
 90°
 56°
SAT
 85°
 57°

Funny 'Nut Job' keeps things moving

  • This image released by Open Road Films shows, Andie, voiced by Katherine Heigl, left, and Surly, voiced by Will Arnett, in a scene from "The Nut Job." (AP Photo/Open Road Films)

Contrast Surly with his fellow squirrel Grayson (Brendan Fraser) because the red squirrel Andie (Katherine Heigl) and every other animal in the park does. The dashing, dopey Grayson is all about heroics, and looking good as he saves the day.

An epic failure to steal a street vendor's nut cart gets Surly labeled "a clear and present danger" to the others, so he is banished from the park. He destroyed the other animals' winter survival stash. Is Surly -#8212; con artist, thief and bully to pigeons -#8212; eager to make good on what he's cost everyone? Not on your life.

And when he runs across the shop that the nut cart came from, he figures this huge stash is his. It'll take blackmail by Andie, or worse, to get him to share.

But Surly's caper runs right up against what the human owners of the nut shop have in mind. They're wise guys out to rob the bank across the street. The animals, with Surly's grudging cooperation, must race the robbers to see who can pull off their heist first.

The sight gags have a marvelous thunder-clap suddenness to them. Yeah, we can see the squirrel smacked against the windshield stuff coming. But animated movies live and die on their pace, and this one clips along.


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