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Still shot from the movie: Barnyard: The Original Party Animals.

Barnyard: The Original Party Animals

It's an undisclosed fact that the animals in the Barnyard are a lot smarter than they appear to their human keepers. But their secret may be utterly spoiled by a comedic cow named Otis (voiced by Kevin James). Nor do things improve when this ambitious moo-ver and shaker tries to lead the rest of the herd. Get the movie review and more. »

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Overall: B
Violence: C+
Sexual Content: A-
Language: A-
Drugs/Alcohol: C
Run Time: 90
Theater Release: 03 Aug 2006
Video Release: 11 Dec 2006
MPAA Rating: PG
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Male cows with udders are ridiculous --"udder"ly ridiculous. But once you get past this anatomical error, Barnyard: The Original Party Animals has its moments of farmyard fun.

It's a classic case of coming out to play while the farmer is away. Turning the old red barn into a pool hall with poker, gambling, a dance floor and a bar, these animals are all about having a good time. Luckily, at least a couple of the beasts have the sense to keep any eye out for the farmer's return.

Watching over the menagerie of critters is Ben the Bovine (voice by Sam Elliot) and Miles the mule (voice by Danny Glover). While the cows, chickens, pigs and horses whoop it up in the shed, Ben stands as a sentinel, protecting them from an encroaching pack of hungry coyotes led by Dag (voice by David Koechner).

Although he tries to groom his rebellious and irresponsible son to some day take over the role, Otis (voice by Kevin James) is reluctant to give up his wild ways. Joyriding in a stolen car with open bottles of milk (that mimic the effects of beer), the younger cow and his gang of buddies (voices by S. Scott Bullock, John DiMaggio, Maurice LaMarche) go on a boy-tipping spree and then try to outrun the police. Later they steal motorcycles from outside of a bar. Only after an unexpected event and the arrival of a pregnant heifer named Daisy (voice by Courtney Cox) does Otis rethink his behaviors and his future.

This entirely CGI animated film has a familiar storyline about accepting responsibility and learning to appreciate wise advice. However, the message takes a while to learn for this unruly Holstein. For young audience members the lesson contains some portrayals of reckless behavior that are short on consequences, rude actions and tense moments when the farmyard critters and the wild coyotes face off on a dark night in an old junkyard. During their confrontation, one coyote has his head slammed against a bus window and many of the characters are hit, punched and kicked.

Still for older viewers and their parents, Barnyard may be one of the more entertaining of this year's animated offerings with a mix of adult and children's humor. While it may not be the most "moo"-ving film of the year, most families won't mind hoofing it into theaters to visit this farm.

Barnyard: The Original Party Animals is rated PG: some mild peril and rude humor

Cast: Kevin James, Courtney Cox, sam Elliot. Danny Glover
Studio: 2006 Paramount Pictures

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About the Reviewer: Kerry Bennett

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