Alvin and the Chipmunks

  • Directors: Tim Hill
  • Producers: Ross Bagdasarian Jr, Janice Karman
  • Writers: Jon Vitti, Will McRobb, Chris Viscardi, Rob Minkoff
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama, Family, Fantasy, Music
  • Actors: Jason Lee, David Cross, Cameron Richardson, Jane Lynch, Matthew Gray Gubler, Jesse McCartney, Justin Long

The story begins in the back of a hill, located in a forest during the summer. The tree that the chipmunks Alvin (voiced by Justin Long), Simon (voiced by Matthew Gray Gubler), and Theodore (voiced by Jesse McCartney) live in is cut down and driven to Los Angeles to become a Christmas tree. Once in LA, the Chipmunks meet struggling songwriter David Seville (Jason Lee) who had his latest song rejected by JETT Records executive Ian Hawke (David Cross) who was Dave’s college roommate. Dave once had a relationship with his next door neighbor, Claire Wilson (Cameron Richardson). She broke up with him because she felt he was too busy, irresponsible and he had no time for her.

After winding up at Dave’s interview, the Chipmunks hop into his basket and follow him home. Once at home, Dave discovers the Chipmunks, and is accidentally knocked unconscious. Upon waking, he kicks them out until hearing them sing “Only You (And You Alone)”. Dave then makes a deal with them; they sing the songs he writes, and in exchange he provides food and shelter for them. However, all does not go well, as Dave’s job presentation is ruined by their coloring on it, and when Alvin tries to set the mood for his dinner with Claire, things become weird and she rejects him after he tells her that “My life is being sabotaged by talking chipmunks”. To make it up to Dave, Alvin, Simon, and Theodore go to Ian in an attempt to record a song and get a record deal.

The end credits show several of The Chipmunks’ past albums.

Stuart Little 2

  • Directors: Rob Minkoff
  • Producers: Douglas Wick, Lucy Fisher
  • Writers: E B White, Bruce Joel Rubin
  • Genres: Comedy, Family, Fantasy, Adventure
  • Actors: Michael J Fox, Melanie Griffith, Nathan Lane, Hugh Laurie, Geena Davis, Jonathan Lipnicki, James Woods, Steve Zahn

Questioning his abillity after a grueling soccer match alongside George who kicked him with a soccer ball (Jonathan Lipnicki), Stuart (Michael J. Fox) gets even more downhearted after George’s airplane gets broken in an accident because of him. However, Stuart’s dad (Hugh Laurie) tells him that for every Little, there is a “silver lining”, or a solution to every problem.

On his way home from school, Stuart encounters a female yellow canary named Margalo (Melanie Griffith) that is pursued by a giant falcon (James Woods). He drives her to safety. In a matter of time, Margalo, the canary, and Stuart have become best friends. But, Margalo has a secret. The falcon pursuing her was a crime lord, and he soon catches up to her, reminding her that if she doesn’t find an object of wealth soon, the sanctuary he promised her will be called off. But Margalo can’t seem to concentrate on her assignment, as she begins to harbour tender feelings for Stuart.

The Falcon eventually comes back, this time threatening to kill Stuart if she doesn’t retrieve a wealthy object. Margalo sadly takes Stuart’s mom’s (Geena Davis) ring. When the family sees it is missing, Stuart thinks it has fallen down the sink. He offers to go get it, nearly succeeding. When he is in danger, Margalo saves him, and he thanks her, making her feel even more guilty, so she decides to leave. When Stuart can’t find her, he assumes she has been kidnapped. He leaves on a quest with Snowbell (Nathan Lane) the cat, but not before setting up a plan with George.

At the park square, Stuart is congratulated by his family and Margalo and Snowbell reunites with them as well. That evening, Margalo leaves with the other birds to migrate south, but not before saying goodbye to her friends, including Snowbell, who is at the point of tears. Stuart says the silver lining is that she’ll be back in the spring. Stuart’s baby sister says her first word, or words, “Bye bye, birdie.”

The Haunted Mansion

  • Directors: Rob Minkoff
  • Producers: Andrew Gunn, Don Hahn
  • Writers: David Berenbaum
  • Genres: Comedy, Family, Fantasy, Horror, Mystery, Thriller
  • Actors: Eddie Murphy, Jennifer Tilly, Terence Stamp, Marsha Thomason, Nathaniel Parker

Jim and Sara Evers are proprietors of Evers and Evers Real Estate and parents of 10-year-old Michael and 13-year-old Megan. Jim is a workaholic who has not been spending time with his family, much to the disapproval of his wife. On a weekend trip in which he has promised to devote time to the family, they make a detour through the swamps of New Orleans, Louisiana to Gracey Manor, a decaying but valuable property. The owners had earlier contacted Sara with interest in selling,but they end up seeing ghosts at the house.

Once the Evers arrive, a violent rainstorm erupts, and they are led inside by Ramsley, the creepy butler who is immediately disturbed that Sara did not come alone. The family is introduced to Master Edward Gracey, the heir of the house, and invited to stay the night as the roads have flooded. Michael and Megan are sent to one bedroom, Jim and Sara to another.

As Jim and Sara are separated, and Jim finds himself trapped in a secret passage, Michael and Megan are led by a floating blue orb into an attic room where they discover an antiquated painting that looks exactly like their mother. They encounter Ezra and Emma, a footman and maid respectively who work for the mansion and also warn the kids of impending danger. Megan and Michael discover that Emma and Ezra are actually ghosts, as is Master Gracey, and that Master Gracey thinks their mother is his lover Elizabeth returned to him from beyond the grave; years ago, she had seemingly committed suicide.

Jim has learned an important lesson about family, and his son and daughter have learned bravery in the face of evil. The family, now in possession of the deed to the house, head out on their vacation to the lake (with the encased head of Madame Leota in the back seat and a quartet of singing busts strapped to the back of the car singing their own version of “When the Saints Come Marching In”).

Stuart Little

  • Directors: Rob Minkoff
  • Producers: Douglas Wick
  • Writers: E B White, M Night Shyamalan, Greg Brooker
  • Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Family, Fantasy
  • Actors: Michael J Fox, Hugh Laurie, Geena Davis, Jonathan Lipnicki, Nathan Lane, Steve Zahn

The film opens with Mr. and Mrs. Little (played by Hugh Laurie and Geena Davis) and their son George (played by Jonathan Lipnicki) on the day of adoption. George wants to come with them, to the orphanage, but has to go to school. While George is at school, the parents go to the orphanage where they see many kids, but fall in love with a thoughtful, observant mouse named Stuart (voiced by Michael J. Fox), a mouse who knows almost everything about the other children due to having been at the orphanage for so much time. He only talks to them for a minute or so, but they knew he was right. “Then you’ll meet one of them, talk to them; somehow, you’ll just know,” is what he told them. Despite the warnings of Mrs. Keeper (the woman in charge), who said that humans shouldn’t be adopting mice, as it may not work out, the Littles decide to take Stuart and adopt him as their second son.

Immediately after getting home Stuart meets Snowbell (voiced by Nathan Lane) the family cat. Snowbell, thinking that he was doing the family a favour; grabbed Stuart in his mouth; the family weren’t happy and told Snowbell to ‘spit him out!’ Snowbell confused spat Stuart out. George [Jonathan Lipnicki] arrives home and is surprised when his parents show him a little mouse, that they say is his new ‘brother’, thinking its a joke George asks where his real new ‘brother’ was; his parents confirming that Stuart was his new brother, Stuart puts out his hand for George to shake; George just stares at his new brother. That night, Snowbell visits Stuart and requests that he keep a low profile, so as to avoid getting seen by the other cats and damaging Snowbell’s image (the alley cats would laugh forever if they heard that there was a mouse with a pet cat). Stuart brushes his teeth with his tooth brush, George throws him down the laundry chute with his pajamas, he ends up in the washing machine, Mrs. Little saves him from drowning.

Snowbell and Stuart walk home and Stuart shares a warm reunion with his family, telling them that Snowbell helped him home. The Littles bring Stuart and Snowbell inside, and close the windows, ready for bed.

The Lion King

  • Directors: Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff
  • Producers: Don Hahn
  • Writers: Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts, Linda Woolverton
  • Genres: Animation, Adventure, Drama, Family, Musical
  • Actors: Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Nathan Lane, Ernie Sabella, Moira Kelly, Robert Guillaume, Rowan Atkinson, Whoopi Goldberg, Cheech Marin, Jim Cummings

The Lion King takes place in the Pride Lands of the Serengeti, where a lion rules over the other animals as king. Rafiki (Robert Guillaume), a wise old mandrill, anoints Simba (cub by Jonathan Taylor Thomas, adult by Matthew Broderick), the newborn cub of King Mufasa (James Earl Jones) and Queen Sarabi (Madge Sinclair), and presents him to a gathering of animals at Pride Rock (“Circle of Life”).

Mufasa takes Simba on a tour of the Pride Lands, teaching him about the “Circle of Life”, the delicate balance affecting all living things. Taking advantage of the cub’s naive nature, Simba’s scheming uncle Scar (Jeremy Irons) (who is very angry because Simba’s birth means that he’s no longer next in line to the throne) tells him about the elephant graveyard, a place where Mufasa has forbidden Simba to go. Simba asks his mother if he can go to the water-hole with his best friend, Nala (cub by Niketa Calame, adult by Moira Kelly). Their parents agree but only if Mufasa’s majordomo, the hornbill Zazu (Rowan Atkinson), goes with them. Simba and Nala elude Zazu’s supervision (“I Just Can’t Wait to Be King”) and go to the graveyard instead. There, the cubs are met by Shenzi, Banzai and Ed (Whoopi Goldberg, Cheech Marin and Jim Cummings), spotted hyenas who try to kill them, but they are rescued by Mufasa.

Atop Pride Rock’s peak, Simba corners Scar. To gain Simba’s mercy, Scar blames everything on the hyenas but Shenzi, Banzai and Ed overhear this betrayal. Simba demands that Scar go into exile. Scar pretends to leave but turns to attack Simba, resulting in a final duel. Simba triumphs over his uncle by kicking him over a low cliff. Scar survives the fall but finds himself surrounded by the now-resentful hyenas, who attack and kill him. Simba and Nala become the new king and queen of the Pride Lands. The film concludes with the Pride Lands turning green with life again and Rafiki presenting Simba and Nala’s newborn cub as “The Circle of Life” continues.