From a 65-year-old franchise comes a palatable, even occasionally fizzy concoction kids will gulp up and their folks won't choke on. There are snippets of classic Curious George stories: George painting a white bedroom in palm-tree greens and leopardskin yellows; George scaling a high-rise like a miniature King Kong; George soaring over Manhattan with a handful of helium-filled balloons; etc. Those looking for subtext -- or even the occasional pop-culture gag -- can peek elsewhere. I know one two-year-old who thought it the best thing ever; presumably, he's the demo, and I'm just the wallet and car keys. The story couldn't be more mundane: The owner of a natural science museum (voiced by Dick Van Dyke) will be forced to let his scheming son turn the joint into a parking lot unless museum anthropologist Ted (Will Ferrell) returns from Africa with a 40-foot-tall idol. The best thing you can say for the movie is that it's decidedly old-fashioned (or timeless, choose your back-handed compliment).
Matthew O'CallaghanWill Ferrell, Drew Barrymore, David Cross, Eugene Levy, Dick Van Dyke, Ed O'Ross, Joan Plowright, Hailey Noelle Johnson, Nadia LewisKen Kaufman, Mike WerbRon Howard, David M. Kirschner, Jon ShapiroUniversal Pictures