Now Playing: ‘Ice Age’ Franchise Ready To Be Set A-‘Drift’

Let it be known up front that I’m not a fan of the ‘Ice Age’ series. The voice cast is sub-par. (Who honestly believes that Ray “Monotone” Romano is a good choice for an animated kids’ movie?) The characters aren’t interesting; they’re barely likeable. And the stories are flat. Having said that, I found ‘Continental Drift’ to be the most tolerable of the batch. It flows better and actually features some fun sequences. Even so, if you put it up against the animated greats out there, it doesn’t hold a candle.

‘Continental Drift’ takes the same approach that ‘Fast Five‘ used for the ‘Fast and Furious’ series. Since the story at hand has been completely depleted over the course of the previous movies, this latest installment takes the characters into a completely different genre. ‘Fast Five’ moved the car-racing series into the heist genre, and ‘Continental Drift’ takes ‘Ice Age‘ into the pirate genre. Strange, right?

The big changes in this story are the following: The mammoth and his wife are having troubles with their teenage daughter. The daughter is also having social troubles because she likes a popular boy mammoth, but her marsupial best friend is ruining her image. The saber-toothed tiger is still mopey. Nothing new there. (If you want a dose of Denis Leary, go see ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ instead.) The sloth is still annoying, but this time he brings his grandma for extra shenanigans. Voiced by Wanda Sykes, grandma is pretty fun, a much better sloth than the one voiced by John Leguizamo.

If you’ve seen any Fox family movie over the last year, you’ve seen the animated short where the ragged, nut-hunting squirrel Scrat causes Pangea’s break-up. Well, that’s actually used as the opening to ‘Continental Drift’. Scrat breaks the world, and a horizontally sliding rock wall constantly pushes our central characters towards the ocean. The three main characters get separated from the land, encounter pirates on the open sea, and have to save their family and friends before the rock wall pushes them into the water.

I’m still not a fan of the ‘Ice Age’ movies and their characters, but ‘Continental Drift’ is at least tolerable. There are many other kids’ movies out there that I wouldn’t want my daughters to watch in my presence. ‘Continental Drift’ is an average family flick. The kids will love it, but parents won’t care if they ever see it again. If you end up loving it, power to you. If you end up hating it, no worries – you’ll forget about it in no time. I did.

Rating: ★★½☆☆

6 comments

  1. Alex

    I really wish they would release a blu-ray of all of the Scrat bits from the four movies. The films themselves do little for me (I didn’t even see the third one), but that little squirrel has me in stitches every time.

  2. I’m still a fan of the opening of the first movie (I forgot about the franchise after the mediocre second movie). There’s one shot that has Scrat just standing there after he has destroyed the giant glacier. Silence. Nervous twitch with his eyelid. Genius.

  3. I think the ONLY reason this movie was made was because they could squeeze some profit out of it. I know the movie business is just that, a business, but this franchise should be dead. I mean, this is a kids’ show, and kids don’t stay attached to one thing too long before moving on to another thing to be obsessed over. It really does need to be put to rest.

  4. William Henley

    I saw Ice Age. Our church rented a theater auditorium on Friday and showed it for the volunteers at the church. It’s not the best movie, but I found it enjoyable, and probably the best Ice Age since the first one. I totally enjoyed it, as did many other people in the auditorium.

    May not be the best movie, but its family-friendly and just fun. If you have kids, I suggest going to see it. The kids will love it, and you will be entertained as well.

    I think half the fun was looking around the theater seeing how other people would react to this. Behind me (just barely in my perephial vision) was a couple in their early 60s, and they were bent over with laughter throughout the majority of the movie. To my left were a group of teenagers who seemed to find the movie tolerable. To my right was a 5 year old girl and her six year old brother. The boy was bored, but the girl was glued to the screen. There were a couple of jokes in there that her eyes got wide, and she would tend to look toward me to see if it was okay to laugh. Not really sure why – I found nothing offensive.

    To my surprise, there were actually a couple of deep theological jokes and refrences in there. I doubt that most people will even pick up on them, not because they are subtle, but I doubt many will get the refrences.

    As for Luke’s review, I think its really fair. The Ice Age series is pretty weak, and this one certainly does not hold a candle to anything Pixar has produced. But this entry into the series is certainly better than the second and third movies, and I enjoyed it.

    I would like to say that The Simpsons short at the begining of the movie was a yawn. The kids enjoyed it, but as far as for me, I have found more entertaining stuff on Nick Jr. The short involves Maggie Simpson being left at Daycare, and after a brief jab at security checkpoints, basically involves Maggie trying to keep a butterfly from being smashed by the baby with one eyebrow. Luckily the short doesn’t last long.

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