Here's something you don't see every day. Taking on the big guns of the animated world, upstart production company Ambient Entertainment has created Germany's first ever CGI feature. A luscious visual feast about a group of cartoon characters who escape from a fictional TV show into the real world, Boo, Zino And The Snurks easily matches the glossy sheen of Hollywood epics like Toy Story. It's just a shame that no one remembered to write a witty, gag-laden script to accompany all the eye-candy.
In the land of Gaya, Boo (voiced by Alan Mariot) and Zino (Glen Wrage) are a pair of donkey-eared humanoids whose arch enemies are the naughty Snurks (no, not blue-skinned white trunk-wearing gnomes - that's the Smurfs - but a group of Neanderthal bully boys). None of them realise they're characters in a TV cartoon show until a bizarre accident sends them into the real world for an impromptu audience with their creator (Patrick Stewart).
"THE SCRIPT IS DEVASTATINGLY UNFUNNY"
Taking on the big guns of the animated world (think Pixar, DreamWorks and Japan's Studio Ghibli), this CG extravaganza sets its action in a much grimmer locale; a dark and gloomy urban sprawl that's like The Borrowers meets Death Wish. It's an odd choice for a children's movie, but not half as inexplicable as the complete dearth of humour. Indeed, the script is so devastatingly unfunny, it's hard not to indulge those creaky old stereotypes about Teutonic wit.
Some welcome comic relief arrives in the shape of the Snurks, in particular their pint-sized leader Galger, a cross between David Jason and Elvis in his Vegas bloater years. Yet, as the story grapples with ponderous postmodern waffle about the nature of reality, kids in the audience will already be climbing the auditorium's walls. "I'm completely bored," moans Galger as Boo and the creator begin a philosophical discussion about free will. We're with you, little fella.