“Tom & Jerry” is a live-action / animated hybrid that takes place in a world in which all animals are animated but all humans are real. But the film barely explores this centering dynamic of a New Yorker named Kayla (Chloë Grace Moretz), who essentially got against her path to a hotel job at a posh Big Apple hotel the week before a High-level marriage between well-known names Ben (Colin Jost) and Preeta (Pallavi Sharda). As the wedding planning begins, Kayla finds out that Jerry has made the hotel their home, so she hires her mortal nemesis Tom to take care of the Singular Infestation before all eyes are on them. Her boss, Mr. Dubros (Rob Delaney) is backing Kayla, but her colleague Terence (Michael Peña) is eager to defeat the newcomer … just because. Ken Jeong plays the hotel chef. You have been warned.
The fatal flaw of “Tom & Jerry”? It’s terribly not funny. Moments of creative physical humor are rare, and there isn’t a single verbal joke that stands out. “Tom and Jerry” Needs extended sequences of animated creativity, and writer Kevin Costello spends way too much time with the boring humans in this version when fans really want to see the rivalry between two classic characters. A scene in which Tom tries to reach Jerry through a power line hints at what this movie might have been if he had trusted his silent characters, for example, the way Aardman trusts Shaun fans. sheep.
As Moretz throws herself into the wrong material and tries to make the most of it, everything falls flat around her. Director Tim Story can’t find the rhythm or focus to make humor work and seems almost deliberately indifferent to his human characters. I understand. They are boring. But then why do we spend so much time with them? And why are the references so surprisingly dated? The film opens with a long sequence of pigeons who will never be seen again singing “Can I Kick It?” From A Tribe Called Quest? (good song, sure, but weird choice in 2021) and a later scene includes references to “The Silence of the Lambs” and “The Warriors”. I can only assume that this script has been around for decades, and the people hired to rewrite it to modernize it have fallen asleep on the job. I don’t blame them.