The Chipmunk Adventure
is a 1987 animated film
featuring the characters
's Saturday morning cartoon
Alvin and the
. Marking the first appearance of The Chipmunks
in a feature film since their 1958
, The Chipmunk Adventure
was directed by Janice Karman
(one of the very few times women
had done so for an animated feature), and features the voices of
Ross Bagdasarian, Jr.
, and Dody Goodman
When Dave Seville goes off to Europe on a business trip, the
Chipmunks, Alvin, Simon, and Theodore are left at home with their
babysitter, Miss Miller - much to the chagrin of Alvin, who dreams
of world travel. While the three are playing an arcade game of
Around the World in Thirty Days
with the Chipettes
, Alvin and Brittany begin to
argue over which would win an actual race around the world. Their
conversation is being eavesdropped on by Klaus and Claudia
Vorstein, two European diamond smugglers. Seeing an opportunity,
the Vorsteins approach the children, telling them that they will
provide them with the means for a real race around the
by hot air balloon
the winner receiving $100,000.
After tricking Miss Miller, the Chipmunks and Chipettes meet at the
Vorstein's mansion, where they are told the rules: each team is
given a separate route to follow, along with a chest of dolls, made
in their own likenesses, which they are required to drop off to
verify that they have visited all checkpoints. Upon dropping off
one of their own dolls, they will receive a doll made in the
likeness of the opposing team. In reality, the dolls being dropped
off are filled with diamonds, and the dolls received are filled
with cash, given to them by the buyers.
begin their travels; while the Chipmunks go to Mexico City, the Chipettes are caught in a hurricane.
both teams, however, they are being trailed by two INTERPOL agents, sent
by Inspector Jamal, who was informed by Klaus and Claudia's butler,
Mario, of the Vorstein's operation.
The agents silently
follow behind as the Chipmunks and Chipettes travel to many exotic
locations. Both teams meet up in Athens, where Alvin
and Brittany begin bickering, each claiming they can "out-rock
and roll" the other, with Dave and the two INTERPOL agents
nearly spotting them.
Chipettes then travel on to Egypt, where they
are captured and brought to a young arabian prince.
prince falls in love with Brittany and, oblivious to the diamond
smuggling, agrees to return the valuable dolls to Jamal but
declares that he is keeping the girls, and making Brittany his
Despite being showered with gifts, including a baby penguin
, the Chipettes are desperate to make an
escape. Still unaware of the contents of their dolls, they secretly
try to retrieve them - only to find them guarded by snakes.
Brittany and Jeanette "charm" the snakes by singing "Getting
, then grab the dolls and escape just as Eleanor arrives
carrying a small cooler.
Meanwhile, the Chipmunks, are camping in a jungle near a native
village while taking a shortcut. Theodore senses something is
wrong; Simon and Alvin don't believe him. Upon waking up the next
morning, they find Theodore missing. While trying to find him,
Alvin and Simon are taken captive by some local natives. They soon
learn that Theodore is being worshiped as the natives' "Prince of
Plenty". Alvin and Simon are quickly forced to wear loin
clothes and are made into Theodore's personal
the Chipettes learn that Eleanor's cooler contains not only food,
but the baby penguin, whom Eleanor feels needs to be returned to
its parents in Antarctica.
The girls soon decide to head to Antarctica
and sing the song "My Mother". However, Claudia is alerted to the
girl's actions by her henchmen, and concludes that they must have
discovered the diamonds and are trying to make off with them. She
orders her henchmen to get the dolls back.
As the girls deliver the penguin to its parents, they are attacked
by Claudia's henchmen. The Chipettes wrestle with the men as they
attempt to steal the dolls, and a doll tears as the henchman falls
from the balloon. Grateful to the Chipettes, the penguins snowball
the henchmen into submission as the girls escape. They then notice
the torn doll lying on the floor of the balloon; Jeanette picks it
up and diamonds fall out of it. Opening the doll, they find it full
of bills, and realize that the whole race was just a set-up.
Deciding the Chipmunks are likely in danger as well, they head off
to find them.
Alvin and Simon, meanwhile, are forced to search a nearby cave for
mushrooms, with Alvin growing increasingly fed-up with the
situation. Inside the cave, they find a series of ideograms
on the walls, which tell of the Prince
of Plenty being sacrificed on a full moon, which is tonight. Before
long, all three Chipmunks are tied to stakes by the natives,
hanging precariously above a pit full of crocodiles. In a desperate
attempt to delay their own deaths, they sing "Wooly Bully"
, which pleases the natives and
lasts just long enough for the Chipettes to rescue them.
in the Chipettes' balloon, the kids return to Los Angeles, where they are met at the airport by Klaus and
After a high energy chase through the baggage claim
(as the Chipettes sing Diamond Dolls
), the two groups are
forced into a car under the false threat of Miss Miller being
kidnapped. Dave is arriving home to the airport at the same time,
and hears Alvin's cries for help. Inspector Jamal runs up,
identifying himself, and he and Dave begin to make chase.
While it at first appears that Klaus and Claudia will escape, they
are accidentally run off the road by Miss Miller, who was heading
to the airport to pick up Dave. The diamond smugglers are arrested,
and Brittany and Alvin begin arguing over who really won the race.
An exasperated Dave breaks up the argument and guides them to Miss
Miller's car, where the others await. Alvin tries to tell Dave
about what happened, causing Dave to yell "ALVIN!" as the credits
begin to roll.
Cast and characters
- Ross Bagdasarian,
Jr. as David "Dave" Seville, the
adoptive father of Alvin, Simon, and Theodore, Dave is a songwriter
who has his hands full keeping track of Alvin's doings.
- Ross Bagdasarian,
Jr. as Simon Seville, is highly
intelligent and extremely practical, with a very dry sense of
humor. He often tries to stop Alvin's schemes, but somehow gets
sucked into them.
- Janice Karman as
Seville, the youngest, as well as more passive and
kind-hearted than the other two. He enjoys eating, and can easily
be bribed by Alvin with food.
- Janice Karman as
Brittany Miller ,is
just as arrogant and egotistical as Alvin. She often bosses her two
sisters around, but she also has a good heart, and loves her
- Janice Karman as
Jeanette Miller, like
Simon, is more intelligent than her sisters. However, she is
clumsy, timid, and less likely to attempt to stop Brittany when
- Janice Karman as
Eleanor Miller, like
Theodore, she's the youngest of the Chipettes. Eleanor is plump and
motherly, but can stand up for herself.
- Dody Goodman as
Ms. Beatrice Miller, the Chipettes' surrogate
mother and legal guardian. She often babysits the Chipmunks while
Dave is away, much to Alvin's chagrin.
- Susan Tyrrell as
Claudia Vorstein/Furschtein, a European diamond
smuggler. Claudia is extremely ruthless, mean, and a spoiled brat,
but at least more confident than her brother, Klaus, if not more
intelligent. She dotes on her small dog, Sophie.
- Anthony De
Longis as Klaus Vorstein/Furschtein,
a European diamond smuggler, Klaus lacks his sister's willingness
to go to extremes. He is easily intimidated by Claudia, and
reminded often of past failures. He has a fondness for Pierre Cardin socks, and enjoys picking fights
with Claudia's dog, Sophie, who's just as spoiled and as bratty as
her mama. Furschtien (IMDb's credits list their
last name as Furshtien, while the film's closed captioning spells it as
- Frank Welker as
Sophie Vorstein/Furschtein, Claudia's pet puppy
who likes annoying Klaus.
Sansom as Inspector Jamal, a
detective for the Lakehurst branch of INTERPOL, who has
been trying to capture Klaus and Claudia for years.
After the success of his animated cartoon series on NBC, Ross
Bagdasarian, Jr. began developing a concept for a full-length
feature film. Fortunately for Bagdasarian Productions, the
box-office failure of Disney
's The Black Cauldron
had led to the layoff of a number of Disney animators, who
Bagdasarian promptly hired to work on his film. The result was
extremely high-caliber animation.
Bagdasarian and his wife Janice Karman decided to finance the
project themselves, having generated so much revenue from the
Alvin and the Chipmunks
TV series. Their decision to work
with several overseas studios led to major production delays. By
late 1986, production had fallen far behind schedule. A shortage of
time and money resulted in major cuts being made to the film (the
final version that was released in theaters was just over an hour
long). The Chipmunk Adventure
, earning only $2,584,720 on its
opening weekend, and at the time of its original released it was a
box office flop, earning only $6,804,312, but became a cult classic
on home video.
This film was produced by Bagdasarian Productions
distributed to movie theatres
The Samuel Goldwyn
. It was released on VHS by Lorimar
in the 1980s, and Universal Studios Home
in the late 1990s. On May
, the movie was released on
by Paramount Home
, digitally remastered from the original 35mm
film and presented with 5.1 surround sound. A
special edition DVD re-release of the film with a bonus CD (which
is the same soundtrack disc) was released on April 1
, which matches
that of the live-action
/computer-animated Alvin and the Chipmunks
and another DVD volume of
Alvin and the Chipmunks Go to the Movies
The film is the only animated film
theatrically released in widescreen
released on DVD
by Paramount Home
that is shown on DVD
The film's opening score was performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
As both The Chipmunks and Chipettes are considered to be musical
groups, they perform many songs through the film. Some of these
songs were written specifically for the movie, while others are
covers of old classics. On April 1
, the soundtrack was re-released as a bonus CD on
the film's DVD.
The soundtrack to The Chipmunk Adventure
is available on
. Track listing:
- "Chipmunk Adventure Theme" - Royal London Philharmonic
- "I, Yi, Yi, Yi, Yi (I Cuanto le Gusta) - The Chipmunks
- "Off to See the World - The Chipmunks and the Chipettes
- "Weekend in France, Italy, England, Amsterdam, Greece..." -
David Seville and the Chipmunks (heard instrumentally in the
- "The Girls and Boys of Rock and Roll" - The Chipmunks and the
- "Flying With the Eagles" - The Chipmunks and the Chipettes (not
heard in the film)
- "Getting Lucky" - The Chipettes
- "Mexican Holiday" - The Chipmunks (heard instrumentally in the
- "My Mother" - The Chipettes
- "Wooly Bully" - The Chipmunks
- "Diamond Dolls" - The Chipettes (unlike the film version, the
soundtrack version sounds low-pitched)
- BONUS TRACK: "Leader of the
Pack" - The Chipmunks
Songs heard in the film but not on the album
- "Underwaterture" - Randy Edelman.
Lengthy piece of music recorded for the underwater sequence.
Unreleased on record.
- "Come On-a My House" - Dody
Goodman. Unreleased on record. Sung briefly by Miss
- "A Matter of Fact" - Electric Light Orchestra. Recorded
in 1986 by that band as source music for the
film's "Wooly Bully" sequence. First released as the B-Side to the UK version of that band's "So Serious"
single, four months ahead of the film's release. Unavailable in the
U.S. until 1990 in its inclusion on that band's
first box set, Afterglow.
- "Witch Doctor" - Dody Goodman. Unreleased on record. Sung
briefly by Miss Miller.
- Production stills and concept art available on the DVD show
that there was originally a scene in which the boys are captured by
dogs in Russia.
- Early concept art also reveals that the producers originally
intended to have a scene where the boys drop off a doll in a church
confessional and that the sacrifice scene was originally set on top
of a Mayan pyramid instead of a crocodile pit. Another sketch shows
the boys in some sort of sewer or prison with two men prying open
bars at an opening at the top.