Do you remember “The Croods for the first time”? I can understand if the answer is “Sure, a little?” A 2013 animated film about a fictional prehistoric cave family featuring the voices of Nicolas Cage, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds, and Chloris Reachman was pretty fun, made a lot of money, and was nominated for an Oscar. .. Nothing destroys the planet, but it wasn’t surprising that DreamWorks Animation decided to make the sequel a green light.
It took seven years to do that, but “The Croods: A New Age” was caught up in a crazy cycle of acquisitions, board changes, and prioritization changes. It was canceled at some point. And this all happened before the pandemic. It’s a complete miracle that it was still finally made with all of the original cast.
But it’s certainly a lot of drama for a ridiculous animated sequel that’s neither terribly special nor all bad. The director’s duties have been transferred from Chris Sanders and Kirk DeMicco to the first director, Joel Crawford. This time, we’ll meet Croods’ Gulag (Cage), Uga (Catherine Keener), Gran (Reachman), Epe (Stone) and her boyfriend. Guy (Reynolds) is looking for a new place to live, dreamily calling it “tomorrow.”
And they come across some sort of “tomorrow”. A walled community of agriculture, tools and comfort, it’s completely different for a family in a rugged survival cave. All of this progress is due to the less subtle names Bettermans, Hope (Leslie Mann), Phil (Peter Dinklage), and their daughter Dawn (Kelly Marie Tran).
Bettermans, frankly, look like modern urban hipsters on vacation in Indonesia. With a mom in a classy shift dress, a dad in turquoise jewelery, and a dad in manvans, sandals, and open shirts, this wasn’t prehistoric at all, and probably Crood lived there. It seems that he was trying to discover it. A confusing social experiment to mimic the state of primitive people. Don’t worry, it’s not. It’s just that this fantastic prehistoric society is more cartoonish and overkill.
These two families are one that emphasizes privacy, tidyness, and progress, and one that is, well, crude, and doesn’t mesh particularly well. You can already guess misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and where it will end up, and it’s a journey with a good heart. Some children may develop relationships with one or another family, or even want what other families have, as Dawn discovered.
There is clear imagination and talent behind this world, but aesthetics are not suitable for everyone. Betterman’s house is colorful and imaginative, and is sure to be a visual feast for young people, especially those who are interested in gadgets and are fans of tree houses. And there are some really interesting moments, where the “punch monkey” makes a little laugh, and accordingly there is a follow-up conversation about punch.
It may not be as novel as the first one, but it’s a bit chaotic, fun for kids, and essentially harmless if it doesn’t have to be more than that.
The Universal Pictures release, The Croods: A New Age, has been rated as a PG by the Motion Picture Association for “danger, action, and rude humor.” Execution time: 95 minutes. 2.5 out of 4 stars.
MPAA definition for PG: Parental guidance was proposed.
Follow AP film writer Lindsey Bar on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ldbahr
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Review: Extremist family rampage in The Croods: A New Age
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