Alpha and Omega (film)
Alpha and Omega is a 2010 American 3D computer-animated adventure comedy-drama film directed by Ben Gluck and Anthony Bell. Starring Justin Long, Hayden Panettiere, Dennis Hopper, Danny Glover and Christina Ricci, the film was written by Christopher Denk and Steve Moore, based on a story by Moore and Gluck. This film sets around two young Canadian timber wolves named Kate and Humphrey who fall in love with each other, but are on the opposite ends of their pack. However, when Kate and Humphrey learn that they got relocated to Idaho for repopulation, they must work together to get back to Jasper Park before a war slowly begins to emerge between both packs.
|Alpha and Omega|
Theatrical release poster
|Music by||Chris Bacon|
|Edited by||Joseph L. Campana|
|Distributed by||Lionsgate Films|
|Box office||$50.5 million|
The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 8, 2010, and was released nationwide in 2-D and 3-D on September 17, 2010, by Lionsgate Films. The film was dedicated to the memory of Dennis Hopper, as he died from prostate cancer four months before it was released, and this was his final performance prior to his death.
A direct-to-DVD sequel, entitled A Howl-iday Adventure, was released on October 8, 2013. Another sequel, The Great Wolf Games, was released on March 25, 2014. The Legend of the Saw-Tooth Cave was released on September 23, 2014. Family Vacation was released to DVD on August 4, 2015. Dino Digs was released on DVD and Digital HD on May 10, 2016. It was followed by The Big Fur-eeze, which was released on November 8, 2016. The eighth installment, Journey To Bear Kingdom was released on DVD and Digital HD on May 9, 2017.
In Alberta, Canada's Jasper National Park, Kate (Hayden Pannetiere) begins Alpha school with her father Winston (Danny Glover) and grows up as a fully trained Alpha wolf. On her first hunt, she crosses paths with two wolves from the Eastern pack who are lacking food in their own territory and nearly start a fight, but the conflict is broken up by Kate's childhood friend, Omega wolf Humphrey (Justin Long), who has feelings for her, but can't pursue a relationship with her because it is forbidden for an Alpha and Omega to be together. The two packs have had a bitter rivalry ever since Tony (Dennis Hopper), the leader of the Eastern pack, commanded his wolves to cross over into Western territory (against pack law) to get sufficient food. Winston and Tony meet up one night and arrange for Kate to marry Garth (Chris Carmack), Tony's son, in order to peacefully merge the two packs. Kate, having a sense of responsibility and duty, agrees for the good of the pack and meets Garth at the Moonlight Howl.
Garth seems perfect, except that he is not very bright and has a terrible howl. Kate, taken aback, leaves and has a talk with Humphrey about Garth, when they are suddenly tranquilized by some park rangers and taken away to Sawtooth National Recreation Area in Idaho, where they meet goose golfer Marcel (Larry Miller) and his duck caddy Paddy (Eric Price). Humphrey and Kate learn that they were relocated to repopulate the species. This horrifies Kate, but intrigues Humphrey so that he can be with Kate; however, after coming to an agreement, Marcel and Paddy help the wolves begin their journey home to Jasper Park.
The two packs discover that Kate has gone missing. Tony warns Winston that if Kate doesn't return to marry Garth on the next full moon, war will be declared for their territory. Kate's sister Lilly (Christina Ricci), however, has developed a crush on Garth and suggests that she show him around until Kate gets back.
Kate and Humphrey's ride home is cut short at a gas station, where Humphrey is mistaken for a rabid wolf after he eats a cream-filled cupcake, which a French bulldog had seen. Kate fends off a man who attempts to attack them with a gun, and she and Humphrey both flee into the forest. During their homeward journey, they cross a dangerous ravine with Humphrey saving Kate from a nasty fall.
The next morning, Marcel and Paddy find the wolves and direct them to a train over a snowy mountain that will take them to Jasper. Climbing the mountain, Humphrey meets a grizzly bear cub who's never seen wolves, but a mishap gets the cub hurt, angering a trio of adult grizzly bears. Kate comes to Humphrey's rescue and after a rough slide down the mountain manage to board the passing train before the bears devour them.
During this time, Lilly and Garth are bonding. At the midnight howl, Lilly compassionately teaches Garth how to howl effectively. At the same time, Humphrey and Kate begin to fall in love and howl together while on the train. By this time, the full moon has come and both packs declare war against each other. As the train passes by Jasper, Kate and Humphrey's exchange of feelings is cut short by the sight of the wolf pack war. Kate stops the fight by announcing that she will marry Garth. The next day, a devastated Humphrey bids farewell to Kate, Marcel, and Paddy; he decides to leave by himself because of his hurt feelings, much to Kate's disappointment.
During the ceremony, Kate decides not to marry Garth, declaring her love for Humphrey. Garth subsequently declares his own romantic love for Lilly. An Alpha wolf marrying an Omega wolf goes against pack customs, and a large brawl ensues between the packs, but is cut short when a massive stampede of caribou comes. Winston and Tony get caught in the stampede, but Kate and Humphrey (who decided to stay) rush in to save them. They succeed, but Kate gets struck by the caribou in the process, so Humphrey then goes to shield her with his body. After the stampede, Humphrey tries to wake up Kate to no avail. Heartbroken that he never got to confess his feelings to her, Humphrey then begins to howl in sadness, causing all the other wolves to howl along with him. Kate then awakens, to everyone's joy, and she and Humphrey confess their love for each other in the form of whispers. Winston and Tony then decide to abolish the law against Alphas and Omegas marrying and accept a union of the two packs via a marriage between Garth and Lilly, much to Garth and Lilly's joy.
Later at the Moonlight Howl, all of the wolves celebrate the love of Kate to Humphrey, and Garth to Lilly, breaking the social classes and traditions, ending with Humphrey and Kate howling a beautiful duet.
- Justin Long as Humphrey, a fun loving Omega who has strong feelings for Kate.
- Hayden Panettiere as Kate, a strong, fearless Alpha who eventually falls in love with Humphrey.
- Dennis Hopper as Tony, Garth's father. This was Hopper's last role before his death.
- Danny Glover as Winston, Kate and Lilly's father who is the leader of the western pack.
- Christina Ricci as Lilly, a playful Omega and Kate's younger sister.
- Larry Miller as Marcel, a French-Canadian goose.
- Eric Price as Paddy, a British duck and Marcel's caddy.
- Price also voices Mooch, an omega wolf.
- Vicki Lewis as Eve, Kate and Lilly's mother.
- Chris Carmack as Garth, a sport brown wolf.
- Kevin Sussman as Shakey, an omega wolf.
- Brian Donovan as Salty, an omega wolf.
- Maya Feltheimer as a bear cub
- Christine Lakin as Reba
- Marilyn Tokuda as Claws
- Tokuda also voices Janice
- Eric Lopez as Candu
- Paul Nakauchi as Hutch
- Bitsie Tulloch as Sweets
- Mela Lee as Candy
- Nika Futterman as a porcupine
- Fred Tatasciore as Garn
- Mindy Sterling as Debbie
- Steve Vinovich as Park Ranger
- Marcelo Tubert as Max
- Toby Huss as Truck Stop Employee
- Jason Ortenberg as Squirrel #1
- Andrew Ortenberg as Squirrel #2
Alpha and Omega took in $2,288,773 on its opening day, and $9,106,906 on its opening weekend domestically, reaching fifth place at the box office. The film ended its run on December 2, 2010 after grossing $25 million domestically and $25 million in other territories.
Alpha and Omega holds an approval rating of 16% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 56 reviews; the consensus is: "With bland visuals and a dull, predictable plot, Alpha and Omega is a runt in 2010's animated litter." At Metacritic, the film holds a score of 36 out of 100 based on 15 reviews, indicating "generally unfavorable" reviews. Andrew Barker of Variety gave the film a mixed review, writing: "Not without charm, Lionsgate's 3D animated pic is agreeably unambitious."
Three books based on Alpha and Omega have been published by Scholastic:
- Kate and Humphrey's Big Adventure/All about Wolves by Rebecca McCarthy
- Alpha and Omega: Marcel and Paddy Save the Day by Tori Kosara
- Alpha and Omega: The Junior Novel by Aaron S. Rosenberg
Published by Storm City Games, a video game adaptation called Alpha and Omega, based on the first film in the franchise, was exclusively released for the Nintendo DS on September 14, 2010 and is only available in North America.
Alpha and Omega was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on January 11, 2011 Also a coupon at Great Wolf Resorts. The film's characters also came in McDonald's happy meal toys and were only available in the UK.
A number of direct-to-video sequels to Alpha and Omega have been produced with none of the original cast reprising their roles outside of Chris Carmack who reprised his role as Garth in the second film, making him the only actor from the original film to return for a sequel. Justin Long is replaced by Benjamin Diskin for Humphrey and Hayden Panettiere is replaced by Kate Higgins for Kate.
The first sequel, Alpha and Omega 2: A Howl-iday Adventure, was released on October 8, 2013. The film revolves around the disappearance of Runt, one of Kate and Humphrey's pups in the sequel. DVD Talk stated that Alpha and Omega 2 was "so thin and uninteresting, and so lacking in holiday spirit, that you're not going to be pulling this one out each year when the holidays roll around" and that the movie's price combined with its film length made other film choices "even more attractive." Common Sense Media gave the movie a 1 out of 5 stars and wrote that the "Faux holiday-themed sequel is weak and forgettable."
Alpha and Omega 3: The Great Wolf Games, based on the Winter Olympics and directed by Richard Rich, was released on iTunes on March 4, 2014, and it was later released on March 25, 2014 as a Walmart Exclusive. Common Sense Media gave Alpha and Omega 3 a mixed review, with three out of five stars, writing that the "mildly amusing sports-themed sequel is fun for young kids." The movie was released shortly after the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, on which it is based.
Alpha and Omega: The Legend of the Saw Tooth Cave was produced by Crest Animation Productions and distributed by Lionsgate Films. Written by Tom Kane and directed by Richard Rich, it is the fourth film in the franchise. The film was released to iTunes on September 23, 2014 and was released to DVD on October 7, 2014. The plot involves Runt exploring the Saw Tooth Cave and finding a wolf who has been driven from her pack for being different. He must help her and he learns about the joys of lending a paw to a friend in need. The trailer for Alpha and Omega: The Legend of the Saw Tooth Cave was released on July 21, 2014. The film was officially announced in the DVD features of Alpha and Omega 2: A Howl-iday Adventure, along with The Great Wolf Games, with director Richard Rich showing two short clips from the storyboards of both films. Common Sense Media gave the film 3 out of 5, stating "Entertaining wolf sequel has peril and some scares".
The fifth film in the franchise, Alpha and Omega: Family Vacation, aired on TV in Mexico on March 28 and was released to DVD on August 4, 2015. It is written by Tom Kane and directed by Richard Rich. It aired in Mexico on March 28, 2015 before having its DVD premiere in August 4. The plot involves Kate, Humphrey, and the pups attempting to have a vacation together, but must flee from human wolf trappers in the process. Common Sense Media gave the film a rating of 3 out of 5 stars, stating "Adorable wolves take on trappers; some peril, suspense."
On April 8, 2015, three more sequels were announced for Lionsgate to distribute, the first of which is intended for a release in early 2016, and will follow the "misadventures of Alpha Kate and Omega Humphrey and their three wolf pups, Stinky, Claudette and Runt, as they learn life lessons in the great outdoors".
As of October 6, 2015, on Splash Entertainment's website, they have revealed the next sequel titled Alpha and Omega: The Big Fureeze along with a sneak preview clips of the movie, which is also slated to release in 2016. The other two sequel titles have also been revealed as, in order, Alpha and Omega: Dino Digs and Alpha and Omega: Journey to Bear Kingdom.
Alpha and Omega: Dino Digs was released on DVD and Digital HD on May 10, 2016. Alpha and Omega: The Big Fureeze was released on DVD and Digital HD on November 8, 2016. Alpha and Omega: Journey to Bear Kingdom was released on May 9, 2017.
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- Lionsgate Alpha and Omega website
- Lionsgate Alpha and Omega Youtube Page
- Alpha and Omega: Journey to Bear Kingdom Release Date