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FREE BIRDS (review)

free_birdsFREE BIRDS
Written by Jimmy Hayward and Scott Mosier
Directed by Jimmy Hayward
Voices by Owen Wilson, Amy Poehler, Woody Harrelson and George Takei

Indian:  Wow, those are some angry birds.

With a star-studded voice cast like this, if nothing else, you would expect FREE BIRDS to be side-splitting funny. However, the complete lack of humour in this film is one of the many downfalls of this turkey of a turkey movie. FREE BIRDS claims to be the greatest turkey movie of all time, but how difficult is that to accomplish when movies about turkeys are not exactly common. When looking at director, Jimmy Hayward’s career, one would expect him to excel with this picture given how strong his HORTON HEARS A WHO was, but when you think he also made the dreadful, JONAH HEX, things start to make a little more sense.

FREE BIRDS is about a turkey named Reggie (Owen Wilson), who is pardoned by the President of the United States, at the request of his daughter, and is therefore saved from being cooked and eaten at Thanksgiving. Reggie was already an outcast in his coop, having been cast out by his fellow turkeys already before his pardoning. Post pardoning, he meets another turkey, Jake (Woody Harrelson), who more or less kidnaps Reggie and forces him to time travel in a machine called S.T.E.V.E (voiced by George Takei, who rivals Neil Patrick Harris as “Steve” from the CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS movies). Their mission is simple; they will travel back to the first Thanksgiving to take turkey off of the menu! If this premise already sounds horrendous and unfunny, you can imagine how 90 minutes of it feels. There are very few choices made in this movie that work, and one of the weirder examples of this is the uncanny resemblance the turkeys bear to the actors voicing them. For instance Jenny (Amy Poehler) really looks like Poehler and Reggie might as well be Wilson’s turkey twin. The effect is more strange than endearing, which is what I assume they were going for.


With American Thanksgiving right around the corner, you may find yourself leaning towards this holiday film, but you should resist this obvious marketing ploy of a film as best you can. If you decide to make FREE BIRDS the main course at your holiday feast, you will wish you filled up on bread instead. If you do avoid it altogether though, when you’re sitting down with your family and friends this Thanksgiving, be thankful for each other, but more importantly, be thankful for skipping FREE BIRDS entirely.



  1. I haven’t seen it yet

    • I hope it is good

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