Wisecracking Jungle Animals on an Ecological Crusade
The worst thing about the animated film “Delhi Safari” isn’t that it’s awful. It’s that it shamelessly rips off much better animated movies. What kind of lesson is that for our young people?
The film, made in India but overdubbed in English for the American release, follows a group of animals whose forest home is being threatened by callous developers. The beasts decide to hike to New Delhi to try to get their grievances heard.
That they spend most of this journey engaging in dreary infighting and occasionally singing equally dreary songs would make the film unappetizing even if it didn’t so brazenly borrow from “The Lion King,” “The Jungle Book” and others.
An adorable lion cub — oh, sorry; it’s a leopard — who communes with his dead father (who lost his life saving the cub) is at the center of the story. Sound familiar? So will the laid-back, wisdom-spouting bear, the malicious hyenas and the humans-are-evil plot. This film is supposed to represent a step forward for Indian animation. The trouble is, there’s not an original idea in it.
“Delhi Safari” is rated PG (Parental guidance suggested). It has menacing moments.