Here's a wild idea – send two turkeys back in time to change the history of Thanksgiving menus.
And, one assumes, Christmas. And Easter. And even Jamie Oliver’s view of bad school dinners...
Woody Harrelson and the unmistakable Owen Wilson voice Jake and Reggie, two birds with different feathers who travel to the 17th century.
It’s an ambitious concept, but unevenly delivered.
One minute we see the US President’s helicopter taking home the ‘spared’ Reggie, the next we’re in the woods of 400 years ago with hunter Myles Standish (Colm Meaney) and his dogs.
Reggie has been kidnapped by Jake, the founder of the Turkey Freedom Front, and transported back in time via the clumsily-titled S.T.E.V.E. – a Space Time Exploration Vehicle Envoy.
Jake’s aim is to spark a turkey uprising and the odd couple are soon joined by Chief Broadbeak (Keith David) and daughter Jenny (Amy Poehler).
While the script doesn’t preach about animal welfare, director Jimmy Hayward (Horton Hears A Who!) reminds us how much fun you can have by keeping active.
Birds would traditionally have been fulfilled ‘doing something’. Now, like obese humans perhaps, they just grow fat.
More of a Turkey Twizzler than a sizzler, Free Birds isn’t funny enough to leave adults rolling in the aisles, nor does it have a sustained sense of peril to leave children on the edge of their seats.
Although the 3D is fine, it does make the picture darker than it needs to be.
The result is not so much a turkey in the true Hollywood sense, more a light-hearted film that pecks and squawks and runs around just enough to keep the uncritical six to nine age group fairy well fed with entertainment.