The Chipmunk Adventure (1987) | Animated and Underrated
Wonderful! Simply wonderful!
I am actually surprised, but this movie was able to stand up on its own on Blu-ray and was an even better and more coherent experience than it was when I first saw it on VHS, not just because the picture looks 10 times better, but because I’m old enough to catch all the details of the story.
Now there is a decent amount to cover here so we may be here a bit, but hopefully not as long as others. There are both many good points and bad points about this film, but I think it balances out to make a noteworthy feature that was probably one of the best children’s animated movies from the 1980s, at least before The Little Mermaid came out.
The Chipmunk Adventure is the feature film debut of the Ross Bagdasarian Chipmunk characters, after their rise to fame from his original 1958 ”Witchdoctor” single. It’s also the feature-film-follow-up to the Chipmunks’ then still ongoing animated series, Alvin and the Chipmunks (1983-1990): an impressively lengthy tv run compared to many at the time. The film was directed by both Janice Karmen, and her husband, Ross Bagdasarian Jr: who provides the voice of both Dave Seville, Alvin, and Simon in the film. And for two people who had previously never directed a film before, it’s an admirable effort, and one that does not stand out as anything odd or out of place, especially in the mid-1980s.
The film’s story, as you may or may not expect, is a bit more “adultish” than is typical. There’s jewel smuggling, political power-plays, international intrigue, world traveling, rock’n’roll musical numbers, and cute kids bickering with each other over who will win: the boys or the girls. Quite a lot, it seems, to shove into a kid’s movie. And when I was younger, it did seem odd to me for all of these adult characters, whom you barely get to know or even recognize, to pop up throughout the story and drive the plot forward. Because while we’re paying attention to the Chipmunks and the Chipettes duking it out in a pop-rock battle of the bands, all of these hit-men and Interpol agents are sneaking around in the background trying to sabotage the kids’ travel plans. Doesn’t tend to register too well when your 7 years old.
But now that I’m much older, this sort of plot doesn’t go over my head anymore, and so now I can actually appreciate it and enjoy it for what it is. Unfortunately, though, there are things that show up, that while I wouldn’t have given them a second thought when I was a younger, I now tend to find issue with. But we’ll get to some of that later on.
The basic story of The Chipmunk Adventure runs like this. Two snobby and rich middle-aged siblings named Klaus and Claudia are running a diamond smuggling operation all across the world, but are trying to keep under the nose of their adversary, the notorious Interpol Inspector, Jamal. Of course, the movie doesn’t want us to know that Jamal is part of Interpol until much later, but I figure it doesn’t hurt to tell you all now.
At the same time, Dave Seville is heading out for a round-the-world Business trip, even though he never explains what the trip is for. They never even re-establish what his job actually is during the film, but I guess I can assume he’s talent scouting or something if he’s part of the music business. And since he’s going around the world, Alvin eagerly wants to go with him in order to get himself some culture. But obviously Dave can’t let him come. So one day, while competing in a two-player video-game of ”Around the World in 30 Days,” Klaus and Claudia over-hear Alvin, and the Chipette leader, Brittany, bet each other that each of them could win a race around the world if it was a real race. And so the two rich siblings introduce themselves and offer the pre-teens a chance to go on an adventure, delivering little dolls of themselves, secretly packed with diamonds, around the world, trading each doll for an opposite doll (filled with money.) And whichever team, the boys or the girls, gets back first; the winners will get $100,000 thousand dollars.
So now in case you are a little lost, let me give you a little backstory before we go further. If you are familiar with the most recent live-action/CGI hybrid Chipmunk films, then you should be aware that Alvin and his brothers are a group of walking talking Chipmunks, who also happen to know how to sing and harmonize in numerous different musical styles. And upon meeting a music producer/agent named David Seville, the three boys strike up a deal with Dave to not only have him become their musical representative and manager, but to also become their adoptive father.
Alvin is the leader and very much the self-absorbed and greedy Eddy/Daffy Duck/Phony Bone of the group (hopefully you get one of those references). Then there’s Simon: the smart, intelligent, well-educated, and highly practical Double-D/Pearl (Steven Universe)/Baljeet (Phineas and Ferb) of the group. And then there’s Theodore: the slightly overweight, food-loving over-eater. You can pretty much think of dozens of examples of his character throughout cartoon media.
On the other side, there are the Chipettes: but sadly their personalities are roughly the same as the Chipmunks and are very weakly defined for some reason. I mean I get that they were created as a way of singing female music. And because they don’t sound any different than the boys, you could literally have the exact same people sing both male and female songs, and just change the cover on the album they’re featured in. But now that the Chipettes are in cartoon form, and must now have personalities, the story people apparently didn’t feel it necessary to flesh them out or even give them a major makeover. I know that the recent films have been this generation’s modern makeover for the Chipmunk/Chipette characters. And apparently there’ll be a brand new cartoon coming out next year. But I just think we would have gotten something so much better if the Chipmunks had been given the same fresh-take treatment as My Little Pony did. They probably wouldn’t have gotten the same massive fan-base out of a new show like that, but at least the approach to the characters and their personalities, designs, and dynamics would have been a heck of a lot better.
I mean, why can’t Brittany be a book smart, no-nonsense character who would play off of Alvin’s school-skipping “throw-caution-to-the-wind” attitude, while Jeanette is the tough bad-girl who would play off of Simon’s more timid nature, and then Eleanor would be slightly more attractive and geeky than the other two and play off of Theodor’s potentially geeky personality and tendency to over-eat? I know that’s probably the only other major way to go with these characters, as I don’t see an easy third option for the character dynamics to work. But then again, if the point wasn’t for these two sets of characters to have a slight romantic interest in each other’s counterpart, then you could design these characters in any number of ways and different combinations could be worked out. Not everybody has to be matched up to their height-wise gender-swapped doppelganger.
And another thing, why is it that every single Chipmunk character besides Simon sounds exactly the same? Simon at least has a slightly deeper and nasally sounding voice compared to the others. But Alvin, Theodor, Brittany, Janette and Eleanor all sound exactly the same. If you were to watch this film as a blind person, you wouldn’t be able to tell whose talking. And while I know that the whole pitched-up voice thing has been a gimmick for short or small characters since there are short people out there who have shrunken voice boxes: not all short people are the same. Some have normal sized heads and very imposing voices: just look at Peter Dinklage for proof. And while I know these characters have been well-known as the squeaky voiced Chipmunks, some rodent characters like Dale from Chip & Dale: Rescue Rangers have a distinct voice of their own, even with the pitch-up. It’s just a matter of how much you pitch up the voice and who you cast in each role. Because these characters could have easily been given distinct voices for each of them, not just semi-distinct performance styles.
Now on to the major elements of the film at hand.
So this story is an around-the-world tour, which of course means we’re going to be seeing stereotypical depictions of every country and major location. We go to Mexico, Bermuda, Rio, Greece, Cairo, and many others that I can’t quite place. Some are presented in a rather non-politically correct fashion, while others I might argue aren’t far off from the real thing. Certain parts of different societies just stand-out in public consciousness more than others, trademarks and memorable icons: some of them are accurate and just remain a distinct part of another society, while others are outdated, over-used, and paint an unflattering picture. Case-in-point are the native South Americans (I assume, but they could easily be based on any number of native tribes) that show up at the end of the film, and capture Theodor and make him their Prince who must be sacrificed on the full-moon night: I assume because the spirit of their long dead Prince is supposed to be inside Theodor’s mortal body. This is a clichéd trope of fictional storytelling where a long-thought dead or isolated native society has a traditional prophecy of one who resembles the likeness of their long dead leader or God, and upon finding this person who looks like their long-dead leader, they must shower him with goods and pleasures and food until it is time to burn him on an alter or feed him to a dragon, in order for the spirit of their leader to awaken from his mortal shell. This has been done in many cartoons, including Ducktales. But was most recently used in Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest. It’s stupid, it is way too over-used these days, and it is unfair to native societies even remotely similar to this type. Prophetical sacrifices have long since been done away with. It’s not cool or romantic anymore.
Something that I used to find really strange and off putting is the fact that all of the human characters in this film have a hyper-realistic design, slightly reminiscent of designs from the movie Heavy Metal: while the Chipmunk characters look like they were taken straight out of a Care Bears movie. It’s just kind of awkward to watch these two drastically different art styles playing off each other. And yet after watching this film for the first time in over 5 years, I don’t have as much of a problem with it. I’m sure some of you will still think it’s weird, and I still think it is too. But now I think it’s a bit more cool and unique rather than bad. It still took a lot of effort to animate all of these human characters after all.
The only character that’s human that I don’t like though, is Dave, because he looks messed up. Like seriously, I know that having to deal with Alvin, Simon and Theodor must be a handful, and he had just taken a shower and woken up for his trip at the beginning of this film, but he just looks hung-over through this whole thing. Big ole’ sags under his eyes, ruffled hair, he doesn’t look like a very pleasant guy to be honest. And I would especially think if he was supposed to be a music agent of some sort, then he wouldn’t be able to do his job well without a bit more of an outward enthusiasm.
Now something else that struck me as odd about this film, and one that wasn’t visual, was that the Chipmunks never once appear on stage, nor are we given any major indication that they are famous or that they are a music group. I know that as movie goers we’re supposed to be familiar with the records and the cartoon series, but even in the cartoon I’m not even sure if the Chipmunks and Chipettes went on stage regularly. It’s been such a long time since I’ve watched the show. And while it’s not a huge problem that this film decides to avoid or at least not address that fact in order to tell its own unique story with these characters, we still have seven songs on the soundtrack, most with their own in-film music videos. So then why is it that the story doesn’t establish who the Chipmunks and Chipettes are and why they can sing so well? They apparently aren’t all that popular in their own universe too, since no one becomes star struck by them, despite Alvin claiming that the three of them had to keep fighting off legions of raving fans wherever they went. And that’s like the only reference to their fame or singing career they make throughout the entire picture.
Furthermore, I’m a little confused as to who the Chimpunks and Chipettes are legally and physically. I mean, was there ever an in-universe explanation as to what the Chipmunks were? Because even if they could, I’m sure it wouldn’t have made much sense to say that the Chipmunks had been affected by something like the mutagen from TMNT, and grew to enormous sizes and gained intelligence and singing abilities. But there has to be some explanation. And also, who exactly legally owns the Chipettes? The Chipmunks are all brothers, and Dave is their father. But then who are father and perhaps mother to the Chipettes? The Chipettes even have a song in the film all about memories of their mother. So then who was she? Was she a Chipmunk, or are they talking about an adoptive mother?
Well apparently Miss Miller, who is depicted here as the Chipmunk’s regular babysitter, is the Chipettes’ adoptive mother. But in the context of this movie you would never know that because the Chipettes never show up at Alvin’s house while Miss Miller is there, nor does the film ever have the Chipettes call her mom or anything to that degree because the four are only together during the last minute or so of the film. And on top of that, even though Alvin tricked Miss Miller into believing that Dave called to in order to have the boys all meet him in Europe, you’d think Miss Miller would become extremely concerned about her own girls if they had gone missing for a few weeks, wouldn’t you think?
Well, after some ranting let’s get on to the main feature of the film, the songs, of which we have seven, and all of which are good. I’m rather impressed actually. Every single song on this soundtrack is good. Some are better, and some are freaking spectacular, but all of them can be called good, which is saying something: as a lot of other animated musical films at the time had mostly terrible songs. I’ll also get to some of my more awkward topic areas as we go along through these, and then I’ll expand upon it a little afterwards as well.
Before I get to the songs, though, I’d like to mention something about the orchestral background music. There’s very little of it in the grand scheme of things, and yet what is there is very very good. Usually, when the music sounds this good and this full, it’s because it’s being performed by a well-known and large orchestra. In this case, it’s the Royal Philharmonic. And again, while they don’t show up too often, the opening theme does a very good job setting the mood and scope for the rest of the film. It has a similar vibe to the opening song of Oliver and Company, which came out around the same time.
So our first actual lyrical track begins about 20 minutes or so into the film, once the Chipmunks and Chipettes are well into their round-the-world trip. The Chipmunks first land in Mexico City, and trade in their first doll filled with diamonds for another doll filled with money. And of course the Chipmunks are none-the-wiser to what is in the dolls. After the trade, the Chipmunks almost get trampled by a team of gauchos, and immediately find out that they just arrived in town during the Annual Fiesta. This then kicks off our first song, entitled “Yi Yi Yi,” which is your typical over-simplified, roughly culturally tinged love song: trying to turn words that sound like American words into something they aren’t. That tends to bug me. It’s an okay song, I guess. But there are plenty better tracks to listen to here. This one is forgettable.
Next is “Off to See the World,” which I’ve previously talked about in a Top 10 Favorite Lyrical Songs from Movies list. A mouthful of a list, I know, but it had to be that specific in order to make any sense. So yes, this is one of my favorite songs ever, and it happens to be my most favorite from this soundtrack: just a little more than “The Girls of Rock n Roll.” If you want to learn my full thoughts on it, then you can go to my previous review of it >>>HERE. Otherwise, it is an extremely beautiful and harmonic piece about traveling the world and finding your dreams and all that good stuff. It’s a very uplifting track, and one that has stuck with me for years. I especially love the twinkly sounds mixed with that deep piano tune that carries the song along.
Number three is the big one, “The Girls of Rock and Roll.” And by the way, consider the fact that this song is called ”The Girls” of rock and roll, and not “The Boys and the Girls” or “The Girls and the Boys,” or even “The Girls/Boys of Rock and Roll:” as sort of a one or the other option. It is strictly “The Girls,” and for good reason, this song, like some of the others I’m sure, was not originally written for this film. It was written and performed in a low budget beach movie called Malibu Bikini Shop: or at least that’s what I’ve heard. Now the song is actually in the film, so I know that part is true. And if I can find it, I’ll include the version of the song from that movie below as well. But as to who exactly wrote the original version and how it wound up in this Chipmunks film, I probably won’t entirely know. But none-the-less, the version of the song sung by the Chipmunks and Chipettes is spectacular. It is the epitome of that mid-80s pop-rock sound: very glam, very sparkly, and very fun. And the animated video that goes along with it during the film is well directed and very well animated. It’s probably one of the best 1980s music videos for animation ever done at the time.
Something interesting to note here, is that with all of the songs in this film, you have to wonder what must they sound like if you turn down the pitch to get the singers back to their “original” vocal levels? Well I did just that, and what I found was that it appears that almost all of the songs are sung by the same group of women, no men as far as I can hear. And while they all seem to be pretty decent singers, including what I believe to be Janice Karmen as the lead for all of them, they definitely sound much better high-pitched and Chipmunk-like. There’s a better mix of sounds and harmonies when it’s all at its final mix pitch. And honestly, once you start tampering with the pitch of a song, you’re bound to run into things that make it not sound so good: because I’m not even sure exactly how they recorded these. My guess is that they recorded the lyrics on a few tracks, pitched up the wave-forms (because by this time I think they didn’t have to speed up the tape to do it), and then recorded the instruments and accompaniment afterwards in order for it to blend well with the squeaky voices. I can also tell that the lead singer here has a very unique ability to waver her voice, almost like a fast but hearty laugh rather than your typical Christina Aguilera waver. And when the songs are pitched down, the waver sounds artificial, which means there has to be some amount of speed change as well as some other level of mastering that I’m not catching here. It’s a very interesting way to create music, that’s for sure. And a very interesting voice.
Track four in the film is… a very very weird one. Not weird if you just listen to it, but weird if you watch the movie at the same time, and consider the context of who’s singing it. The song is called “Getting Lucky,” and it’s sung by the Chipettes, who if you recall, are supposed to be elementary school pre-teen girls who haven’t even gone through puberty yet.
Are you starting to see a problem here?
Now admittedly, this is my 3rd favorite song on the soundtrack. It’s very charming, and fittingly it’s a song meant to charm a bunch of snakes guarding one of the dolls that the Chipettes have to retrieve. There are some beautiful harmonies as always. And although I don’t entirely agree with the message of the song, that “getting lucky is what it’s all about,”—because it isn’t—I find it a very enjoyable track. The problem, however, becomes very prominent when you watch the video.
So let me break this down for you. And I’ll just warn you, this is awkward territory ahead.
So we have two young girls, roughly 8 to 10 years old here. They’re scantily clad in harem outfits, and they are singing a song about “getting lucky” to a large group of snakes. For those of you who don’t know the term, I apologize for the moment that you decide to look it up: but this is a rule 34 waiting to happen. Perhaps I’m looking too much into this, but plenty of people have made this observation before me. People from my generation tend to find phallic symbols and potentially dirty ideas in everything. But I have to say, this is just a bit too suspect.
And these Chipettes are actually scantily clad during a few other portions of the film, which really doesn’t sit well with me. I mean, I can understand that all of these Chipmunk characters are supposed to be cute, and dressing them in cute clothes is going to be a thing, even when it concerns bathing suits, dresses, and what have you. But having them fall out of their balloon all battered and bruised from battling a hurricane, and their clothes reduced to barely-attached rags is a totally different issue. Why must I see this much skin on a child? I ask you.
Furthermore, the way that they dance and gyrate, shake their hips, bat their tiny eye-lashes, and pout their lips is further evidence that the production crew had an interest in sexualizing these child characters. Now this is not to say that the filmmakers meant anything beyond wanting younger girls to find these cartoon characters endearing and amusing. Sexualizing pop stars of any variety or of any genre and media is a common thing. It is also apparently something that does not have any age limits, as evidenced by Hannah Montana and Brittany Spears’ early careers. Marketability people, that’s what it’s all about.
The really really young girls will look up to Brittany, Jeanette and Eleanor, and be amazed at how adult they act, shaking themselves all over the place, and how confident Brittany looks in the way she stares at you. And they’ll likely start doing the same. It’s a strange way of bringing a music-star closer to a younger age group rather than promote a fully grown teenage artist to that same demographic. The problem is that if you try to do all of the same stuff with a much younger character, the actions of that character become all the more questionable. And while I don’t tend to pay much mind to this sort of thing, even when I casually watch this film in particular, I still have to raise an eyebrow to it because it just doesn’t seem right. If these female characters were 18 or maybe even 16, I wouldn’t necessarily question it, but with them being 8 to 10 or so, that tends to be rather strange and off-putting.
Song number five is called “My Mother,” and it’s a strange entry in the film because it really has no bearing on the plot much. The Chipettes, after being stuck in Arabia (I assume) and getting proposed to by the Sheik, they all escape after retrieving their dolls, and Eleanor takes a baby penguin with her that had been given to Brittany as a present. The baby penguin is slowly getting sicker because the temperature isn’t cold enough, and so Eleanor convinces her sisters that they must take a detour to the South Pole in order to return the penguin to its mother.
Honestly this story turn is extremely unimportant and pointless. By now, if I or anyone else had been watching the tv series, I’m sure we would have learned all we would need to know about the Chipmunks’ and Chipettes’ personalities and characters. So this little moment of compassion and kindness doesn’t seem necessary because it neither teaches us anything new about the characters, nor causes any new events to occur during the story.
Anyway, the song itself is a sweet and very heartfelt poetic lullaby about the Chipettes and their mother, as well as all mothers in general. It’s an honest song, one with a low tempo to change things up since we’ve heard so many fast paced tracks so far. And you always need a slow song during a musical. So no real harm done.
Number six is “Wooly Bully.” I am not familiar with this one. I believe it’s supposed to be a previously recorded song, which is why the chief of this native village here requests that the Chipmunks sing the song. Which also begs the question, how does this Chief know that the Chipmunks are musical artists? And if he does, then why is he so quickly willing to sacrifice them all? “Wooly Bully” is a weird song too, because despite making out every word of the previous Chipmunk tracks, I can’t hear a thing in this one. Not one word registers in my ears, it’s all a blur. I don’t even get what’s so enjoyable about it. Why would the Chief request this song? There’s nothing incredibly special about it. Eh, whatever, let’s get to the last one, which is my fourth favorite.
Number seven: “Diamond Dolls.” A very 80s song, especially with all of its different synth track levels and surround sound mastering. It’s a very layered song. I love the soft vocals at the start, that then lead into the bright and loud chorus. It’s a very good track for this ending chase scene, and it perfectly encapsulates the tone and energy of this film, which is good since it happens to be our last for the soundtrack. Give it a listen.
After all of that music and awkward subject matter, what else is there to talk about? Well there are the voice actors, which as you may have guessed are primarily the directors Ross and Janice. Ross, after his dad had passed away in 1972, took over the role of Dave Seville, Alvin and Simon Chipmunk for the majority of the later records produced, at least as far as the speaking roles went. I can’t say for sure if he provided any of the singing in this production. However, Janice did the voices for both Theodor, and all three Chipettes. And like I said before, I believe she may be the chief singing voice for both Alvin and Brittany in the soundtrack, while some backup singers fill in the other four voices.
Interestingly enough, Dave Seville, as depicted in this movie, is similar looking to the real Ross Bagdasarian Jr. But is not nearly as similar looking as Claudia and Miss Miller are to their voice actors, Susan Tyrrel and Dody Goodman respectively. It’s actually rather striking how similar the animators chose to make them look. It gives an extra dimension and believability to their performances in the end. And despite being in a movie about talking singing chipmunks, no one featured here does a half-assed or poor job in their roles; they treat these roles like anything else. And that’s the best that you can ever hope for out of your actors.
Lastly, the animation for this film has always impressed me, for both its overall quality, and its quality when compared to its contemporaries. Don Bluth had just completed An American Tail the year before, and would be doing The Land Before Time the year after. But he was an exception to the rule, along with Disney. Most of the time, producing an animated feature of any type at that time meant that you had to outsource your work to multiple different animation groups. And even if you did keep all of your animation in-house in one location, which Bagdasarian was lucky enough to do here (it seems), smaller productions like this that were composed of freelance animators meant that there was much less consistency between the different animators and their scenes. Everything was cleaned up and painted in roughly the same way, but no two adjacent shots or scenes look alike for the most part. The quality and animation fluidity vary across an albeit short spectrum, but an obvious one if you look hard enough. Certain shots can look rather amateur, while others have a seasoned looseness and attention to nuanced performance, which tend to be very fascinating to watch when they pop up.
Looking into the credits here, I was shocked to see that one of the most famous animators around, Glen Keane, was one of the chief animators on the film. And he’s a likely candidate for some of the better animation that I just mentioned above. Apparently after having worked on Mickey’s Christmas Carol and The Great Mouse Detective, he left Disney briefly to go work on this before returning to work on Oliver and Company. Very strange.
We also have Viki Anderson, a character animator for Oliver and Company and The Black Cauldron. Chuck Harvey: who worked on Animalympics and The Fox and the Hound. And Dan Haskett, who while being an animator on The Chipmunk Adventure, has had a huge career as a character and model designer on things like Tiny Toons: How I Spent My Vacation, Beauty and the Beast, Jetsons: The Movie, The Little Mermaid, Animaniacs, and 101 Dalmatians II: Patch’s London Adventure. Dan also happened to be an animator on Animalympics, and was also one of the animators on the long forgotten film Pinocchio and the Emperor of Night, which we will be getting around to very shortly. Beyond them, there are plenty of other animators that you can find that worked on this project, who have gone around the business in many different roles and studios and projects, including both 2D and 3D. This film even makes special thanks to Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston for some unknown reason. I assume they must have given animators some tips and advice during production or something, like as acting consultants. Maybe they even showed up at the studio to look over roughs. It wouldn’t entirely surprise me.
To put it short and sweet The Chipmunk Adventure is an endearing and charming film. There’s some real love and quality put in here, even if certain areas don’t look so hot or are off-putting. It is a well-made film, and one that should be treated well and remembered more than it is.
It’s amazing that after all this time this movie actually got a Blu-ray release, and a proper one at that. Because while most of the time when you see a claim like “Fully Restored” on the cover of a Blu-ray, you look at the film and you go, “well that was a big fat lie.” But no, actually that claim is very much true. Despite the opening credits admittedly still looking like garbage, the rest of the film has both consistent color, has no frame wobble or choppy movements, no streaks, flecks, smudges or artifacts, and is all together a very clean print and presentation. So ultimately, I had to concede that this film has indeed been restored to a relatively fantastic degree. Ferngully: the Last Rainforest is a case where 20th Century Fox just dug up the old print, sent it through an HD transfer unit and slapped it on a Blu-ray without paying much mind to the quality of the print itself, because there were white flecks and dust EVERYWHERE! And many of the lesser-known and less popular Disney animated films have been receiving a poor treatment as well by having their animation and outlines smeared to near unrecognizability in some feudal attempt to bypass using the proper software and technique to remove film grain, as Disney has been prone to do with their classic animated films. And while they do an amazing and impeccable job when improving their animated footage when done right, when it’s done wrong it just looks like we’re watching the movie reinterpreted by dry-erase markers through a foot and a half of milky water. The DVD looks better than some of this garbage (Sword and the Stone, Oliver and Company, Robin Hood). So you can imagine my surprise and delight to discover that this movie really IS restored and cleaned up. And for such a niche market cult-classic, it’s impressive that the Bagdasarians had such a strong enough interest to see it returned to a former glory on home-video.
If you’re in the market for some old nostalgia, I highly recommend you pick up the Blu-ray of The Chipmunk Adventure, it comes with a DVD as most often do, and there’s really no better or cheaper way to see it. Sadly the soundtrack is very hard to come by these days, and last I checked it had not been put on I-tunes for direct download. So I’ll have to see about buying an old used copy someday.
UPDATE: Just got my copy of the soundtrack in the mail yesterday, and I’m very happy to see it as part of my collection. =)
Catch you all next time for more underrated reviews. We’ve got some fun ones near on the horizon for 2015. So keep a watch out.