While he'll forever be known to many as James Bond, there's no doubting that Sir Sean Connery enjoyed one of the longest, finest and most distinguished careers of any film actor before officially retiring in the mid-2000s. Countless memorable performances and a 1987 Academy Award for his role in The Untouchables have cemented that legendary legacy, but sadly, his final film, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003), left a sour taste in the mouths of so many adoring fans.
Fortunately, Connery returned to film work in 2010 to voice Sir Billi, the hero of an eponymously-titled Scottish animated film, which is based on a short that Connery also worked on in 2006. While Sir Billi is finally getting released overseas next month, it may not be the triumphant return to the big screen for Connery that many fans were hoping for. Just take a look a the trailer above.
After viewing the trailer, it's not surprising that the film was universally panned when it premiered at several festivals last year. The computer animation is definitely subpar when compared to films from Dreamworks or Pixar and that cheesy voiceover seems to border on unintentional parody.
The story - about a senior-citizen veterinarian/skateboarder who battles Scottish police to save a fugitive beaver - will also leave Connery fans scratching their heads. If you didn't get the gist of film's plot from the clip, here's an official synopsis:
An aging, skateboarding vet, Sir Billi goes above and beyond the call of duty fighting villainous policemen and powerful lairds in a battle to save an illegal fugitive - Bessie Boo the beaver! A heart warming and action packed family movie where thrilling car chases, heroic skydiving and daring stunts from this octogenarian, fueled with encounters with a hostile submarine, will keep you at the edge of your seat!
Sure, it's easy to laugh at this stuff, but as a film aimed at young children, Sir Billi could provide plenty of enjoyment. Unfortunately, it probably won't get a wide distribution and won't be seen by many moviegoers outside of the United Kingdom.
It's certainly sad to think that Sir Billi will almost assuredly mark Connery's last film performance and while many fans would have loved to see him end his film career in a more thrilling, dramatic, action-packed or kick-ass way, it's understandable that he went the route that he did considering his age (82), and the fact that he is most likely enjoying his retirement from energy-draining big budget spectacles.
If you get a chance, will you check out Sir Billi? Let us know in the comments!
Sir Billi also features voices from Alan Cumming (The Good Wife) and Miriam Margolyes (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2) and releases theatrically in the U.K. on September 13, 2013.