Thursday, 2 July 2009

Ice Age 3: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs: Movie Review

Ice Age 3: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs: Movie Review

Rating: 7/10
Cast: John Leguizamo, Ray Romano, Denis Leary, Queen Latifah, Simon Pegg
Director: Carlos Saldanha, Mike Thurmeier
They say the third time is the charm.
With Ice Age 3: Dawn Of the Dinosaurs, that's definitely the case.
After the events of Ice Age: The Meltdown, Manny the wooly mammoth (Ray Romano) is getting ready for fatherhood with Ellie (Queen Latifah) - and Sid (John Leguizamo) and Diego (Denis Leary) are trying to work out their place in this impending happy family.
Sid is pining for motherhood and Diego's unsure whether he's lost his edge - basically, the pair of them feel out of sorts with Manny's future.
So when Sid stumbles on some dinosaur eggs and adopts them, he inadvertently ends up kidnapped and in an underground world populated by dinosaurs, miles away from his friends.
Realising the danger their friend is in, Diego, Manny and pregnant Ellie head off to try and save him&.
Ice Age 3 is going to be the perfect entertainment for the impending school holidays - and while other third installments of an animated franchise have struggled to keep up the laughs and originality (Shrek 3, I'm looking at you), there's no such danger with this latest addition.
And the reason is because of the pure insanity of some of the side stories.
Granted, the quest to find Sid is not exactly the stuff of cinematic legend, but Ice Age 3 has two major things going for it.
The return of Scrat (and his beloved acorn) and the latest insane addition to the menagerie, Buck the weasel (voiced perfectly by Simon Pegg)
These two combine a wackiness and goofy unpredictability which brings much needed relief to the rather mundane central plot.
Scrat has this time got a female nemesis who messes with his acorn as well as his head - his slapstick antics are sc(r)attered throughout the film and inserted here and there seamlessly - and benefit from the less is more mentality.
But it's Simon Pegg's slightly damaged goods character, Buck the Weasel, who gives the film a much needed boost of sheer hilarity - his character is imbued with a sadness (he's been living underground amongst the dinosaurs for years) but he plays off more of a sort of Apocalypse Now insanity.
The kids will love Ice Age 3 - it's best to enjoy the film in 3D (and it's being released so) and on the big screen - unlike other recent 3D offerings, none of the scenes feel shoe horned in to demonstrate how cool the tech is - some may argue that if the animation's good enough, it shouldn't need 3D to boost it; but in this case, the 3D gives the animation a lush textured feel.

Ice Age 3 isn't on the broad spectrum of animated humourous outings like Toy Story - but it's 90 minutes of great family entertainment which will keep the little darlings quiet while the winter rain continues to pelt down.

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