March 3, 2021

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‘Tom & Jerry’ movie review: Happy trip down memory lane

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Tim Story’s film is a sweet tribute to the countless hours of watching William Hanna and Joseph Barbera’s fantastic animated series

Tim Story’s Tom & Jerry is a sweet tribute to the countless hours of watching William Hanna and Joseph Barbera’s fantastic animated series. Tom, a grey and white house cat, and his nemesis, the feisty little mouse, Jerry, first appeared in 1940. One’s sympathies invariably are with Tom as all his involved plans to catch Jerry come to naught and he gets quite a beating for his troubles.

This latest live-action/CGI feature moves the duo to New York. Jerry is visiting the Big Apple and after seeing all the shady accommodation offerings, decides to take up residence at the fancy Royal Gate Hotel. The hotel is hosting the wedding of the century between Ben (Colin Jost) and Preeta (Pallavi Sharda) and a mouse in the premise will surely queer the pitch.

Kayla, (Chloë Grace Moretz), who inveigled a job at the hotel, suggests hiring Tom (who has also come to New York to seek his fortune) to rid the hotel of Jerry. Terrance (Michael Peña), the deputy hotel manager, is disgusted with Kayla’s scheme even though the manager Mr DuBros (Rob Delaney) would like to give Kayla a chance.

Tom & Jerry

  • Director: Tim Story
  • Cast: Chloë Grace Moretz, Michael Peña, Colin Jost, Rob Delaney, Ken Jeong, Pallavi Sharda, Jordan Bolger, Patsy Ferran
  • Voice cast: William Hanna & Frank Welker, Nicky Jam, Bobby Cannavale, Lil Rel Howery, Tone Bell
  • Story line: The rivals move to New York and there is a big fat Indian wedding to mess up
  • Run time: 101 minutes

Some of the supporting cast from the cartoons make their appearance including mean alley cat Butch (Nicky Jam), Tom’s crush, Toodles, and Spike (Bobby Cannavale) the slobbering bulldog. His cutie pie son, Tyke, unfortunately is not to be seen.

Moretz is charming and goofy while Peña is competent as always. Jordan Bolger as Cameron, the hot bartender, is easy on the eye while Ken Jeong as the temperamental chef gets the laughs as does Patsy Ferran as Joy, the weird bellhop, who is rumoured to have been “brought up by wolves”.

The elephants, peacocks and tiger that float in as part of the big fat Indian wedding can be forgiven as the elephants’ social media jargon is just too cute. Ditto for Tom’s shoulder devil (Lil Rel Howery) and angel (Tone Bell).

Bright and busy, Tom & Jerry is a nostalgia-fuelled thrill ride. Using archival recordings for Tom and Jerry, sticking to the look and feel of the original cartoons all make for a happy trip down memory lane with Tom serenading Toodles on piano providing the background score.

Tom & Jerry is currently running in theatres

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