Wednesday, August 17

Stream it or skip it: ‘Back to the Inside’ on Netflix, a cartoon of talking animals with all comedy

This week in the talking animals what never closes its damn screams is Netflix Back to the Outback, an animated comedy in which a host of celebrities give voice to snakes, spiders and other dangerous Australian animals that are sick and tired of getting a bad rap just because their venom and / or mouth daggers can kill them. snot. You Isla Fisher, Guy Pearce, Eric Bana, Tim Minchin, Kylie Minogue, Keith Urban, Jacki Weaver and a host of others remember self-centered Americans who are Australians in their island-continent shoes as their colorful characters begin at the zoo. Y [INSERT MOVIE TITLE HERE], launching witty phrases and syrupy sentiments with the same will-nildad. Will we care? Or is it just another generic Netflix cartoon?


The essence: An Australian wildlife park on the outskirts of Sydney has an incredible slogan: “Home to the world’s cutest animals” is its boast. It is a very easy place to install on Instagram and, perhaps for no reason, it rhymes with “flammable.” Okay, not literally so, but symbolically, because the park is run by Chaz (Bana), who likes to mistreat his bags by adorning terrifying creatures while crowds of onlookers gasp and swoon. Maddie (Fisher) is a taipan snake whose venom, Chaz brags, can kill 100 people in 10 seconds, which would be quite a feat as it would require biting and poisoning 10 people per second. Do the math, Chaz! Anyway, Maddie is a very sensitive and sweet snake, just like her best friends, an eager scorpion named Nigel (Angus Imrie), a thorny, escapist devil lizard named Zoe (Miranda Tapsell), a somewhat funnel-web spider. horny named Frank (Pearce) and a big crocodile named Jackie (Weaver), who is the matriarch of this motley group of inhuggables, who just want to be hugged.

Neither animal is particularly pleased with this situation, which frequently requires the pesky Dundee / Croc Hunter wannabe to shove his fangs and spines into the faces of screaming children – something you’d think would inspire trouble with the insurance company. . That’s not all: an additional insult is the existence of Pretty Boy (Minchin), an internationally famous koala who is so delightfully ambrosial, children are lining up for his photo, he has a Nobel Peace Prize on his shelf and Freud would put his ego in a display case. It sure would be totally crazy if Maddie and company. ended up trapped with Pretty Boy as they traveled through bustling urban centers and through burning deserts, encountering a rogue gallery of other ugly on the outside / squishy on the inside: bats, sharks, Tasmanian devils, dung beetles – as they try to get [INSERT MOVIE TITLE HERE], with that idiot Chaz in the queue, right? Theoretically.


What movies will it remind you of ?: Rare animals escaping the zoo to return to their roots is a premise that was raised wholesale from Madagascar. Perhaps the filmmakers will come up with something more original if they dare to do Back to the Outback 2: Revenge of the Dung Beetles.

Performance worth watching: I’m sure Minchin really enjoyed the opportunity to do a one-line metajoke on how to meet the Pope.

Diálogo memorable: Regardless of the multiple occurrences of the film’s title being quoted word for word in the dialogue, I will settle for Chaz’s unconditional commitment to survival of finding his runaway animals: “We will face danger, we will face danger. death, us ”. We will drink each other’s urine! “

Sex and skin: None.

Our Take: Fortunately, our survival from this movie does not depend on consuming our own bodily excretions, although we will have to endure a scene of tarantula and vomit. Back inside It is, on the whole, a perfectly acceptable overall formulated family movie fodder. It’s colorful and it looks cool, but so does a bevy of animation efforts from Dreamworks, Netflix, and Sony that won’t be named here because they couldn’t be distinguished and thus we forgot they existed.

Very few of those movies are particularly offensive, but they tend to cover the same territory: sizzling dialogue, doses of sentiment, drops of water, pop culture references, celebrity cameos, poop and vomit jokes, and a fast paced full of action. End hanging off a cliff that is too noisy in the middle. This particular film covers the thematic fodder about the importance of raising one’s family, the desire to find one’s roots, and the idea that one’s beauty comes from within – all things one should find depressingly familiar if one has seen more than one. movie in life. .

Outside does some things well, perhaps in its HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL anti-zoo subtext, and most likely in its remarkably shifting views: Reptile and insect protagonists see themselves as complex, emotionally delicate, and wide-eyed creatures of Wide open, though when directors Clare Knight and Harry Cripps switch to human perspectives, they’re hissing and menacing monsters. Of course, the underlying idea is that they are just as scared of us as we are, so can’t we all just get along and maybe invite the sharks for tea and constructive dialogue instead of vilifying them all the time? You know, what’s so fun about peace, love, and understanding? That’s a perfectly good message, but the bigger question is, can’t the movie convey it without a vain koala trying in vain to make us laugh and the recurring Phil Collins references?

Our calling: I’m being a bit harsh. Back inside it is a waste of time suitable for young audiences, even if it is not particularly original or funny. Parents won’t need to shoot themselves with a tranquilizer dart to survive, but it probably won’t hurt them. STREAM IT, just don’t expect much.

John Serba is a freelance writer and film critic based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Read more of his work at

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