Director: Kirk De Micco, Chris Sanders
Year : 2013
Genre: Animation | Adventure | Comedy
Official Website: www.thecroodsmovie.com
This is the first movie after 20th Century Fox signed a 5 year distribution deal with DreamWorks, and they are definitely off to a good start.
The Croods is a story set in prehistoric era, and revolves mainly around an overprotective father Grug (Nicolas Cage), his inquisitive daughter Eep(Emma Stone), and Guy(Ryan Reynolds) a boy with brains, who enters their life much evolved with ideas, fire, and shoes, and the like.
After having all of his kind killed, Grug believes the only way to keep his family safe is to live in a cave, and avoid all new things and curiosity. He reiterates this in his bedtime tales where the lesson always seems to be of death if you try anything new and warns them to never not be afraid.
Eep on the other hand, is always curious and eager to seek out adventures. On one such escapade she find a light and chasing it meets Guy, an intelligent cave-boy( Homo sapiens ) who shows her fire, and tells her about the world is headed towards “the end”.
What follows next is the comical adventure of the family together with Guy to escape the doom, and make their way towards the light, the only place that can ensure their survival.
We have the drama with Grug’s insecurity and jealousy at Epp’s and Guy’s growing closeness, and his ego clashes with Guy over his intelligence. We have the quirkiness of the other Croods – Grug’s mother-in-law, his wife Ugga, his son Thunk, and his little daughter Sandy. We also have Belt a sloth who is with Guy. I loved the rottweiler-like Sandy and Belt both got some of the best laughs from the audience. We also have piranha like birds, giant carnivorous flowers, and sabre-toothed cats, all adding to the thrilling road trip with these obnoxious but dear characters.
This is an entertaining movie. But I just feel the imagination and creativity is a little stifled. The success of the Ice Age seems to be still in the air. We are in the prehistoric era again. There was the squirrel and his acorn, here we have the Croods and their prized egg.
The opening sequence where the Croods fight for the egg, immediately proves the CGI capability. And the whole movie is helped along with vibrant scenes, and beautiful imagery. The 3-D effects are traditional, nothing to make you jump or duck or gasp in surprise.
I also loved the way subtle hints to evolution and thinking are given when Ugga comes up with the idea of escaping the carnivorous flowers.
The Good: Beautiful animation, enjoyable characters, and several laughable moments. Nicolas Cage as Grug is very good!
Drama, and emotion to ensure adults will also have a good time!
The Not So Good: Cannot help but feel the likeness to Ice Age, and Avatar-esque sensation in some scenes. 3-D effects not anything to brag about. The lengthy and speedy dialogues, thematic jokes(mother-in-law and son-in-law) may not be something younger children will comprehend.
The Verdict: Recommended