Alvin and The Chipmunks: The Road Chip is the third sequel to the 2007 adaptation of the classic cartoon – so these films are clearly making money for Uncle Rupe (the first three have earned more than $1 billion worldwide) and pleasing their intended audiences, too.
Jason Lee is back as Dave Seville, the manager and "dad" of this trio of talking (and singing) chipmunks, who in this outing is heading to Miami for the release of a record he produced for a pop star Ashley Grey (Bella Thorne). But he's leaving his little pals at home and instead taking new girlfriend Samantha (Kimberly Williams-Paisley) and they have to stay at home in LA to be babysat by her teenage son, Miles (Josh Green) – who is not much of a fan of the 'munks. But Alvin gets it into his head that that Dave plans to propose, so the chipmunks and Miles hit the road in a bid to stop the engagement.
If you've seen the first three films, then you know what to expect – Alvin and the boys cause trouble and get up to the usual hijinx. The trouble starts on the plane from LA, which sets up the "villain" for the film - James Suggs (Tony Hale), an air marshall chasing after the chipmunks because of a personal grudge.
There's loads of action, and the blend of real-world and CGI works well – in fact, the animation has got better with each film. Much of the humour, though, is very much aimed at the younger members of the audience, and a subplot about the chipmunks being put on the no-fly list seems a little mistimed. Still, it all moves along at a nice pace, there are not too many songs (those chipmunk singing voices are really annoying) and Lee gets to let fly with a few of his character's trademark "Alviiiiiiin!" screams. As family films go its probably skewed more towards the kids than, say, a Pixar film is, but it's colourful, harmless fun.
EXTRAS: There's a handy "catch-up" featurette called Alvin And The Chipmunks: The Story So Far (4:57), which gives a recap of the first three movies; the behind-the-scenes featurette Cue The Chipmunks: The Great Big Chipmunks Musical Finale (5:47); the featurette Our Furry Planet (4:36); the featurette Alvinisms (2:51); the featurette Weta And The Chipmunks: Anomators' reference Reel (1:47); the featurette After The Party: A Munkumentary (1:30); Ultimate Playlist, a collection of music videos, some of which include lyrics; Munk Rock (1:49); Redfoo "Squeaky Wiggle" Dance Instructional (1:45); the featurettel Bound For Georgia (2:16); the featurette Road Chippin' Through Georgia (5:03); and the theatrical trailers.