Chicken Little: A Question of existential dread.

Disneys Chicken Little. Alright there’s a lot to unpack with this. I don’t know where this journey might take us if I’m being honest, it might get a bit intense? It probably will… I’m going to level with you one on one here, I’ve been thinking about this particular thing for years and I mean literal years. From when I first watched this film when I was younger this specific very niche aspect never sat right with me, its been present in the back of my consciousness for a while now always there always scratching away…

Let’s start of slow with a brief plot summary of this charming little animated number. It’s a classic tale, Chicken Little was just minding his own business one day when all of a sudden a piece of the sky falls and hits him In the head, of course greeted with this bizarre situation he declares upon the town that the end is nigh! Unfortunately nobody believes him and he’s rather publicly humiliated by the whole ordeal (and I mean they really ridicule this small chicken child, its several steps too far if you ask me), however, his friends believe him and they set about solving this mystery, but thats neither here nor there.

What I’m going to take the time to discuss takes place within the first five minutes of this film so the rest is irrelevant to me. Still though this a quaint film thats well worth the revisit, it still holds up 15 years after its initial release.

The film opens with young Mr.Little perched up within the town bell tower, he’s ringing the bell, he’s declaring an emergency. The sky is falling!! The whole town square descends into chaos, it’s madness! There’s cars crashing there’s mother rabbits running away with her rabbit babies (the animators reuse a visual gag within a minute of each other here, and hey I get it animation is expensive and time consuming but come on, you know the exact same visual gag with the rabbits so close together? Thats just lazy in my book, if I’m being frank about it). Anyway one thing leads to another and the tower water tower or water reservoir gets knocked down and barrels through everything within its path, including the local movie theatre.

This is where we find our conceit ladies and gentlemen, the lynchpin to this deep dive into this twisted anthropomorphic hell scape that Disney introduced us to in the mid 2000s. The cinema is showing “Raiders of the lost ark”. Not some cutsie animated animal version, oh no! It’s showing real life flesh and blood, Harrison Ford in the titular role as Indian jones ‘Raiders of the lost ark’. Now I can’t be the only one who saw this and thought “wait hang on? What the hell is going on here?!”

Okay… okay so honestly what is going on within this universe? And I know okay! I know the filmmakers fully intended it as a visual gag and nothing more but here I am talking about it rather aggressively (you can’t see me typing this just trust me there’s a lot of aggression and dare I say passion being poured out over here). So within the Chicken Little-universe there exists the film ‘Raiders of the lost ark’. Is this film a remnant of the previous civilisation, that civilisation being the human race? It’s possible that this could be the only human film in existence but thats not clearly stated.

Which leaves us to speculate and speculate I will. There’s just simply no way I can accept that human beings and these animal creatures cohabitate together, there’s simply no way. Human nature is underlyingly destructive and greedy if humans were to live within this world we'd have slaughtered these fuzzy beings long ago. But I could be wrong? This is what I’m talking about here, what is going on?? Am I supposed to accept the idea that Harrison Ford walked down a red carpet with Steven Spielberg at the premiere to adoring fans who happened to be dogs, chickens, rabbits and other woodland creatures?

There’s bigger questions here as well, much bigger questions. The Ark of the covenant is the macguffin (an object, device, or event that is necessary to the plot and the motivation of the characters, but insignificant, unimportant, or irrelevant in itself.) with the ‘Raiders of the lost ark’. The Ark is a religious relic that represents the presence of God, it holds within it the tablets that were given to Moses and upon them the ten commandments. Now do these animal fellows understand and/or grasp the concept of a higher being such as The Almighty Lord? They must and if they do then that must imply they have there own version of a higher power.

Those who choose to follow the path of the lord are told distinctly that humans were created within the image of the Lord, now what im pondering upon here, were the intelligent animals of the chicken little-universe taught the same thing? That they were created within the image of their higher power? And If so what must they think when they look upon Harrison Ford as he sports his fedora and brandishes his whip??

Thats If they even have an animal God, I simply don’t know these things?!

I’m fully confident that humans and intelligent animals simply could not co-exist, so that leads into asking. What happened to the human race, clearly some evidence of our existence survived but what happened to our way of living? Did we wipe ourselves out waging war with each other? Thats the obvious answer I feel, or now hear me out, did the animals rise up and take vengeance upon us for how we’ve collectively treated them?

Maybe thats what happened the animals won the war and the kept a number humans around as their pets and forced them to make films for their enjoyment. If thats the case this delightful cartoon movie has a dark, twisted and blood-soaked shadow looming over it. Somewhere in a far of land of this world as the events of Chicken Little are transpiring, Harrison ford is chained up in some hole like a beast waiting until he’s pulled out to make another sub-par romance comedy or sequel to the bizarre ‘Hollywood Homicide’ with co-star Josh Hartnett, that is of course if heart throb Josh Hartnett survived the war.

There’s just so much at play here, there’s so many moving parts within this dynamic and overwhelming machine that is the Chicken Little- universe. I didn’t rewatch the whole film before I wrote this if I did I’m sure this would run longer, there’s also aliens within this film as well, that opens up too many other doors and questions. You see what happens when you make a children’s film and don’t properly plan out your visual gags and what not! A lot can happen, it could drive some what already borderline neurotic writer to the brink of madness! A man called Mark Dindal made this film, I’d love to have strongly and emotionally charged words with that man. And simply ask him why? just why?

Thats all I’m calling it quits here, believe me I could go on but I’m going to put a stop to this for both our sakes… Imaging being a seven year old or whatever and seeing this film and the seed being planted concerning this and its been taking root ever since for years, its irrational I know but here we are, you and me deep within the bargain bin with this one.