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Night at the Museum Battle of the Smithsonian

Released

Latest Home Video

Dec 01, 2009

MPAA Rating:

PG


Run Time:

105

Cast

Ben Stiller

Owen Wilson

Amy Adams

Studio

2009 Twentieth Century Fox

Official Website >>

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Reviewed by

OverallB-
ViolenceB-
SexA-
LanguageB
Drugs/AlcoholA
Run Time105

Making the Grades

History doesn’t have to be boring and Night at the Museum proved that when it literally brought the past to life with the help of computer generated animation. Unfortunately the creative concept doesn’t work quite so well in this sequel.

Part of the problem lies in the sheer size of the cast. Not only does Night at the Museum Battle of the Smithsonian introduce viewers to a whole new crowd of historical figures like Abraham Lincoln (voice by Hank Azaria), Abel the space monkey, and the Tuskegee Airmen (Keith Powell, Craig Robinson), it also crates up most of the characters from the first film and hauls them along for this outing as well. After a while, it feels like you’re trying to keep track of an entire kindergarten class on a school fieldtrip.

The script also gets sidetracked with a number of vignettes that introduce even more characters, like a chubby security guard and some office workers that have nothing to do with the rest of the movie. The first of these scenes takes place in Larry Daley’s (Ben Stiller) office where he is now the CEO of a company that develops and hawks infomercial type products. There is never an explanation for his sudden success, but suffice it to say he doesn’t hang out much at the Museum of Natural History any more.

However, when his former friends are packed up and shipped off to cold storage in the basement of the Smithsonian, Larry trades his business suit for a stolen access card and some guard garb in order to help them.

It seems the golden tablet is working the same kind of magic in Washington D.C. as it did in New York City. As a result, the Egyptian ruler Kahmunrah (Hank Azaria) has teamed up with Ivan the Terrible (Christopher Guest), Napoleon Bonaparte (Alain Chabat) and Al Capone (Jon Bernthal). He plans to summon his army from another dimension and take over the world. (Honestly, this must be the most overused plot on the planet.)

With the help of his past pals, including Jedediah (Owen Wilson) and Octavius (Steve Coogan), and some new recruits like Amelia Earhart (Amy Adams) and a trio of singing cherubs (voiced by the Jonas Brothers), Larry intends to keep history from repeating itself. Yet the comedic timing and cumbersome script can’t keep pace with the original film.

Fortunately there are enough jokes and visual effects to keep most kids entertained and only moderate amounts of slapstick violence and moments of peril. But with centuries’ worth of history to revisit and acres of exhibits in the world’s largest museum, it might have been better to leave the old characters under wraps and focus solely on the new ones.

Discussion Ideas After The Movie

Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Night at the Museum Battle of the Smithsonian.

p>Although spending time in the Smithsonian Museum is the best way to see the displays, an online excursion to this famous site can be taken athttp://www.si.edu/. Check out the special exhibits featured in this film at http://www.gosmithsonian.com/nightatthemuseummovie.

This movie includes a number of product placements. Can you find them? Do you think products or companies featured in films profit from their screen presence? Would you be more inclined to purchase one of these items or not?

If you could meet and talk with one historical figure, who would it be?

Canadian Movie Ratings

BC
SK
PG Violence.
AB PG
MB G Frightening Scenes.
ON PG Frightening Scenes.
QC G
NB
NS
NL
PE
PG

Canadian Home Video Rating: PG

Watch @ Home

Details on home video releases of Night at the Museum Battle of the Smithsonian...

Release Date: 1 December 2009

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack presents the feature film in both of these formats, plus:

- Gag Reel.

- 12 Deleted scenes, including an alternate ending.

- Featurette: Curators of Comedy: Behind The Scenes With Ben Stiller, Cherub Bootcamp and Phinding Pharaoh With Hank Azaria.

- Game: Museum Scavenger Hunt.

- Monkey Mischief Featurettes: Historical Confessions: Famous Last Words, Secret Doors and Scientists, Cavemen Conversations: Survival of the Wittiest, Museum Magic: Entering The World Of The Photograph, Director 201 With Shawn Levy and Gangster Levy.

- Audio commentaries with filmmakers.

- FOX Movie Channel Presents featurettes.

- Digital copy of Night At The Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian.

Offered as a Limited Edition, Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian: Monkey Mischief (Double DVD) includes:

- Gag Reel.

- 6 Deleted scenes, including an alternate ending.

- Featurette: Curators of Comedy: Behind The Scenes With Ben Stiller, Cherub Bootcamp and Phinding Pharaoh With Hank Azaria.

- Audio commentaries with filmmakers.

- Monkey Mischief Bonus Disc: Show Me The Monkey, Monkey Business, Primate Prima Donnas, The Secret Life of a Monkey Movie Star: Life Off Camera and games (Monkey Slap and

Abel and Dexter’s Flights Of Fancy).

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (Single DVD) comes with:

- Gag Reel.

- 6 Deleted scenes, including an alternate ending.

- Featurette: Curators of Comedy: Behind The Scenes With Ben Stiller, Cherub Bootcamp and Phinding Pharaoh With Hank Azaria.

- Audio commentaries with filmmakers.

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Movielover3 says: Mar. 22, 2010

This was a fantastic movie and totally appropriate for kids.

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