There's one thing to be said about an unfunny comedy, and another about a film as deeply unpleasant and mean-spirited as Chicken Little
. The film substitutes any attempt to create genuine investment in its "story" (and I use that word very loosely) with just trying to inspire pity in its main character, who spends a majority of the film getting bullied by the most shallow, unlikeable antagonists imaginable. The thing is, even when this kind of thing is followed by a (very contrived) happy ending, you still end up with a movie that's 70% just pointless, mean-spirited abuse, and there's no kind of interesting plot or characters to make you want to Earn Your Happy Ending
here. Chicken Little spends much of the movie trying to appease to the bullies through material means, and temporarily succeeds, but the only reason the bullying stops for good is because the thing that started it is irrefutably invalidated, meaning there's no real redemption to be had for anyone. This kind of thing might have worked in some kind of dark social commentary for adults, but Chicken Little
is anything but that. It approaches its set-up in the most sleazy, dead-eyed "we're too hip to give a crap" way possible, making it feel like the film's very narrative is a participant in the bullying, and ends on the most unearned happy ending in the whole canon.
What pushes the film into being outright offensive is how much it is a giant middle finger to the very spirit of Disney films. It's a blatant attempt to jump on board with the hip attitudes of then-current animated films (that sadly still exist today, though Disney itself has thankfully and wisely mostly abandoned them), but even in that regard it feels faint-hearted because it still wants us to recognise it as a "Disney classic" in its very unearned attempts at "warm and fuzzy moments". I'm all for the idea of Disney making different kinds of animated films, but I do take issue with it attempting to steer their line of movies into a genre that was pretty much created
solely to insult their previous movies.
Oh, and while it is incredibly unpleasant, it is
also a very, very unfunny comedy. So there's that.