top of page
  • Writer's pictureArts

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Chicken Nugget | Review

The Anthropomorphism of Chickens and the Ethics of Eating Meat 

By Itzel Durazo-Encinas 

Rating: 5/5

Designed by Wannapik

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Chicken Nugget (2023) is the sequel to Chicken Run (2000), directed by Sam Fell.

This animated film picks up from the ending of the first movie where the chickens have escaped from Mr. and Mrs. Tweedy’s farm and have begun their new lives on a quaint little island on a lake, hidden away from humans. On the island, two of the movie’s protagonists, Ginger and Rocky, start a family with their newly hatched chick named Molly. 

Molly (played by Bella Ramsey), has inherited her mother’s sense of adventure and her father’s bravery and grows up to be a curious 11-year-old. Though her parents try to protect her from the world beyond their island, Molly’s curiosity only intensifies when she sees a Fun-Land Farms van driving past. This encourages her to sneak off the island and stumbles across Fizzle, a teenage chicken. After realising their daughter has gone missing, Ginger and Rocky organise a search party and follow Molly to Fun-Land Farms.

Bella Ramsey signing autographs. Image: GabboT on flickr. License: CC Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

Once Fizzle and Molly have arrived at Fun-Land Farms, the movie reveals the sad reality of what goes on inside of a chicken farm, the things that most don’t usually consider when feasting on a bucket of chicken from KFC.


For me, watching this movie and the prequel raised questions on the ethics of eating animals and wondering how a non-vegetarian would interpret these movies.

I’m a vegetarian, and I didn’t react in any negative way to the film; this movie presents real events in a light-hearted and comedic way and I’m not here to change anyone’s opinions on the ethics of eating meat. 

The movie displays themes of animal slaughter in a comedic form which may have been done to spread awareness about the brutality of chicken farms. By anthropomorphising animals, the viewer becomes sympathetic towards the chickens because they can relate to them through emotions such as love and fear. On the island, the chickens use items humans commonly use like prams and tools. They also engage in human activities such as knitting and making popcorn using a hand-made device. It’s clear that, in the film at least, chickens can be self-sufficient when given the chance.

Usually, eating meat is justified by arguing that animals are either not sentient or are not as psychologically complex as humans, meaning they can’t contribute to society.

In the movie, we are shown that every chicken contributes to their small society on the island, mirroring humans and making us sympathise.

Since this film targets a younger audience, the potential impact of anthropomorphising farm animals is that it may encourage younger viewers to go vegetarian out of sympathy for the innocent animals in the movie. 

I really enjoyed watching this movie, although I prefer the first Chicken Run movie. As someone who enjoys knitting, I adored the character of Babs who was always seen knitting in both films. She uses her knitting skills innovatively, such as knitting a trap around one of the guards at the chicken factory. I was impressed and delighted by the level of detail and accuracy of the stitches of different knitted pieces shown such as Ginger’s green hat, the detailing of the garter stitch, and Babs’ knitting projects.

 I also appreciated that both movies use voice actors with varying accents from Great Britain (excluding Rocky’s American accent) such as Scottish, Southern English, Geordie, and a few Northern English accents. This really showcases British culture, alongside other elements such as Nick and Fetcher, two rats featured in both movies, eating a Custard Cream and Jammy Dodger biscuit in the first movie.  


bottom of page