The final escapade is both clever and side-splitting. Vern conquers his jealously and reservations about R.J, while R.J. decides to save his friends rather than his own skin. The two lead their family to safety against a blood-thirsty bear, a crazed homeowner, and a slightly psychotic exterminator with a bad comb-over.

You could say that Over the Hedge is predictable, but in the end that doesn't really matter. It's cute, laugh-out-loud funny, and can be enjoyed on many levels. If early Dreamworks CGI films were problematic for you, if you thought the Shrek  films overdid the bathroom humor, or Madagascar was too bland, then Over the Hedge is the movie for you.

CAUTIONS:

  • Language:  R.J. tells the gang if they are seen by a human (while sneaking into suburbia) to lick their privates. Hammy the squirrel has a few lines about his "nuts" ("Want me to show you what I do with my nuts?" and "I found my nuts!" for example), referring to the fact that he is gathering acorns for the winter. These comments will probably go over the head of young children, but adults will recognize the double entendre.

  • Violence:  Slapstick cartoon violence. Some of the sequences involving Vincent the bear will be frightening to young children. Humans mean to harm the animals in several inhumane ways. One of the animals gets kicked down a flight of stairs.

  • Sex/Nudity:  Vern the turtle is constantly losing his shell, in one scene his backside is exposed.

  • Religion:  When the animals first encounter the hedge, they think it is something to be worshiped.  People are briefly shown praying before a meal; R.J. explains they are worshipping their food.