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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:35 AM
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Default Ice Age: Continental Drift

Went to see the movie Ice Age: Continental Drift at the Ward Theater this afternoon which I think this is the fourth movie in the Ice Age movies.

The main story is about Manny, Diego, Sid and Sid's grandmother being stuck on an iceberg that has been cast off from their land and are trying to get back to their family and friends. Beside battling the elements they have to go up against another iceberg crewed by a band of pirates (made up of other animals of course).

While this movie is a comedy it does get silly at times, maybe too cute when the head pirate enslaves a group of Ewok like animals (I don't know if they are gophers or groundhogs or whatever) on their island base and Manny, Diego and Sid from an alliance with the rest of these animals to free their enslaved brethen. When the battle happens the free animals form an impressive sized army but between their small size and the distance from the pirates, the pirates have trouble seeing or hearing them.

The other part of the movie is the sabre-tooth squirrel and his quest for acorns. What he finds at the end of movie is kind of funny.

There is also a Simpsons cartoon at the beginning of the movie.
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Old September 14th, 2012, 02:39 PM
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Default Re: Ice Age: Continental Drift

Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012)
Voices of Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Peter Dinklage, Jennifer Lopez, Keke Palmer, Queen Latifah, and a hundred others.

The Shrek, Toy Story, and Ice Age franchises have all done the same stupid thing with their sequels, and while I think they each have different reasons for doing it, the result is pretty much the same. The introduction of more characters with each installment in each series shifts the focus from what made the original films so effective. Rather than give audiences more of what worked so well, all the writers have done is cram the frame with personalities, which necessarily means less of what worked.

Ice Age: Continental Drift tries its darndest, unveiling new characters behind every snow flurry, new characters voiced by talented performers like Keke Palmer, Peter Dinklage, and Wanda Sykes, but every addition of an offspring, grandmother, or love interest means a subtraction from time spent with the original trio of Manny, Sid, and Diego (Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, and Denis Leary). It’s as if the film’s own producers think the original movie’s success is based on the novelty of talking prehistoric creatures. It was never that: what made the first picture so enjoyable was the unexpected chemistry of its voice actors and their characters.

The title’s continental drift actually had me hopeful for a few minutes, when the three principal characters are separated from their loved ones by huge chasms opening dramatically in all the wrong places. Rather than seize that moment to right the film’s biggest wrong, however, the writers cleverly find ways to give us even more characters.

This is not to say the film doesn’t have its laugh-out-loud moments. Leguizamo’s Sid is so goofy and idiotic he’s lovable, even burdened by having to deal with a grandmother voiced by Sykes. Leary’s seething Diego is still the coolest character with some of the best lines, but he loses a lot of his edge in a romantic sub-plot that’s supposed to make us gooey when all it did for me was make me roll my eyes and groan.

What annoys me most about films like this is that in their effort to be kid-friendly, they take the easy way out and force a family-friends-spouses message almost from the beginning. The Keke-Palmer-voiced daughter of Manny seems to exist only to provide a lesson about being true to yourself and loyal to your friends. When the dramatis personae is dictated by the plot rather than the other way ’round, the result is mindless, syrupy dreck like this, which is offensive enough when you’re plunking down ten bucks at the box office, but it also teaches our kids to be entertained by thoughtless writing. If we want smart kids, we have to entertain them smartly. Kids would probably be ten times smarter if, rather than this shallow garbage, they watched something creative and clever but entirely lacking in overt After School Special proselytizing, like Tiny Toon Adventures or Animaniacs.

Robin Williams famously ad-libbed a considerable portion of his dialogue for Disney’s Aladdin, with animators and script-writers working from Williams’s recordings. Why didn’t the Ice Age writers just turn the mics on and let Romano, Leary, Leguizamo, and Sykes cut loose as their animal characters, and write a script out of that? It would have been a hundred times more entertaining than what they gave us. Ice Age is drifting away from its strengths, and overpopulation is at fault.

3/10 (IMDb rating)
37/100 (Criticker rating)
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