So, Norm of the North takes place in a world where animals of the Arctic entertain the tourists that come so they won't come and invade, and for the occasional fish. They'll literally throw fish from their small inflatable rafts. And here's what's special about Norm, our main character which makes him the main character; he can understand human language. It's like one of those side-stories where everyone and everything speaks English but it's conveyed to the humans only through Norm's mouth out of all the bears in the Arctic. One day, he and the Arctic realize the humans are coming to build condos and destroy all their beauty, so Norm along with three immortal, gaseous and boneless lemmings set out for New York City and show themselves off to convince Mr. Greene not to move forward with production. Fortunately, he needs an 85% approval rating from the people and he's nowhere near, but he has his ideas.
All its flaws aside, I have to admit there have been higher-budgeted animated movies I've enjoyed less, most notably Sponge out of Water and the second Hoodwinked. And there are some pleasures to be found here, such as this dancing whale eight minutes in that was hilarious for his ten second appearance and Heather Graham brings the exact same irresistible character and emotion as Vera Brightly that she did in The Spy Who Shagged Me. The movie also has some family-friendly musical numbers and neat character design, especially on the seemingly-boneless arms of Ken Jeong's character Mr Greene. But a lot of its story elements seemed too derived from earlier films and filled with fart jokes instead of imagination. And the lemmings are actually to me what drag the film down the most. They are sometimes zippy and bouncy but during their animation it is way too obvious that they animated one and pressed "Copy" for their startout performance and pressed "Copy and Paste" for three parts, as well as during the end when they're crushed, we already know they'll be okay so there's no cause for alarm and they all have the same animation again. The animation is fine everywhere else but it's overly noticeable for an eighteen million dollar production. And one story problem I found was this side story about Norm's Grandfather. Norm is informed of a surprising fact about him but he is told this rather than witnessing this. He sniffs something and automatically says "Grandpa." What I wish instead could've happened was we as an audience didn't see him and by the end when Norm finds what he's looking for, we get to witness it firsthand and think, "Wow. Why didn't I think of that?! This movie sure tricked me up." Maybe I would've recommended this movie if it did that. And there's another story problem that I can't help but touch on. In the North Pole, when the announcement about the condo danger arises, all the bears and seals and lemmings and moose are in a cave as one. And for the animals, there are suits and goggles. Okay, first of all, what do the animals eat if they seemingly don't eat each other or don't for a living to have a meeting in the same cave and where do they get the suits and goggles? One animal is eaten by another, and it is shown as comic rather than cannibalism.
As I've mentioned, I've seen worse, and animated movies tend to have a fun that not many live-action movies can duplicate. Norm of the North has some of that vibe.