Ginny and I watched The Chipmunk Adventure many, many times as children. My dad had this super-anal-organized thing going on with our VHS tapes, and if I remember correctly, The Chipmunk Adventure was on #17, “Children’s Cartoons.” Though it may have been #11. Hmm.
So yeah anyway, we loved that movie. I mean, seriously, what’s not to love about a movie where a bunch of Chipmunks and Chipettes go on a hot-air balloon race around the world with less than 24 hours’ notice and are obliviously smuggling diamonds and cash in little Chipmunk and Chipette dolls that were also made with less than 24 hours’ notice, not to mention the whole part that there’s a contact in every city where they’re supposed to stop, again, on less than 24 hours’ notice? Plus, the dolls are in weird hidden locations like under the ocean in the wreckage of a pirate ship, and in some kind of a post that you pass by in a gondola, and on some kind of weight-activated temple lever system. That is outstanding. Oooh ooh and remember when the Chipmunks got kidnapped by the island natives who want to sacrifice Theodore on the full moon, and Alvin tries to negotiate his way out of it by giving them all of his A t-shirts and his boombox, but instead of letting him go all the natives are now running around town in A shirts? Oooh and the part where the boy prince wants to add Brittany to his harem? And how awesome are Klaus and Claudia and Sophie the purse Yorkie with their magical 80s style? My favorite Claudia moment is when she’s riding an exercise bike all up in her matching pink 80s workout ensemble, complete with everpresent cigarette. And Klaus? Well crap, Klaus is just awesome. Though kind of a pussy.
And anyway, how in the hell did a bunch of chipmunks magically learn how to pilot hot-air balloons in a day?
BUT WAIT! Don’t forget that in the midst of their diamond-smuggling race around the world, the Chipmunks and Chipettes took some time to stop off in Athens to determine who could out rock-and-roll whom. That’s pretty much the crowning moment of the entire movie. I have probably watched that musical number 5,000 times in my life.
My best friend Holly and I along with either fifth-wheel friend Adalie, Holly’s little sister Michelle, or Ginny would frequently play The Chipmunk Adventure, along with the movie if possible. I always got to be Brittany, because, well, Brittany was the coolest (I mean, seriously, LEGWARMERS!) and I was That Kid. Holly had to be Jeanette because she had dark hair. Adalie/Michelle/Ginny had to be chunky geeky Eleanor because Holly and I had Brittany and Jeanette’s lines down cold, and besides, we weren’t about to be Eleanor. I vividly remember our portrayal of the infamous Athens rock-and-roll-off, where Holly and I found some way to lean off the couches in her basement without tipping them over. That was our equivalent of the Chipmunks and Chipettes standing on the baskets of their hot-air balloons singing at each other as they both departed Athens. Um, also on one of those occasions we threw apricot pits at the wall to represent when the penguins at the South Pole saved the Chipettes by throwing snowballs at the Interpol agents (or were they secret diamond operatives?) hanging off the balloon basket. Holly’s mom found those pits a few days later and was not pleased.
Do the Chipettes even have parents? Or parent-type people? IMDB says their last name is Miller which makes me wonder if they are somehow related to crazy-ass Miss Miller the babysitter. In any case, they did not have to call Dave Seville in the middle of the night in some fancy European boudoir in order to trick him into saying all the words they needed to splice a tape together to dupe Miss Miller into letting them go to Europe on their own. They just magically got to go.
Ginny called me a few months ago from Wal*Mart to freak out about how she’d just found The Chipmunk Adventure on DVD in the cheap bin. I asked her to get me a copy too and because she’s awesome, she did exactly that. I finally watched it this weekend for the first time in years and am happy to say that, in my opinion, it stood up to the test of time.
Exactly how dorky am I if I admit that I kind of want the soundtrack? Those are some kickin’ 80s tunes, y’all. (Hey family – it’s available on Amazon. Christmas idea!)