Saturday 23 March 2013

Review: The Croods (3D)

World of Blackout 77-Word Film Review

The Croods Poster

The Croods (3D)
Cert: U / 98 mins / Dir. Kirk DeMicco / Chris Sanders

An odd one. Visually, The Croods is as glorious as you'd expect, and the voicework, music and sound effects are all on-target, but... there's something missing. For the first hour or so, there's something incredibly bland about the whole thing; nothing gels together to make the kind of magic we've come to expect from Dreamworks. A large part of this is that Nicolas Cage's Grug has a heavy presence in the first act, and his voice is so mismatched to his character model, it just keeps pulling you back out of the movie. His voice-acting's fine, but he's not that character.

There are smiles and chuckles along the way, but no real guffaws to be had. The kind of button-pushing emotional triggers that this genre usually slaps all over are nowhere to be seen, until... the film picks up in the last half hour. The tar-pit scene, to be exact. Everything from that point onwards is pretty fantastic as the film slides into gear and cruises over the finish-line. One of the fantastic subtler touches is the way the colour-palette changes once the Croods cross the chasm. Up until that point, it'd been very cartoony and exaggerated, but as they stand and look at the land that represents their old life, they're lit in 'real world' colours. It's that kind of attention to detail that makes me really grin.

I get the feeling that if The Croods had been a 45-60 minute feature, it'd be excellent all-round. Sadly, it isn't and it isn't.

But the kids in the audience seemed to be getting the most out of it, and maybe that's why it's not quite making me squeal the way that Despicable Me and Wreck It Ralph did. *shrugs*

Bottom line: As nice as it looks, the 3D isn't used strongly and it's not consistently great enough to warrant spending £10+ on. This is really a rainy afternoon DVD.

Is the trailer representative of the film?

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?
In the last half hour, yes.

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Not enough.

Pay at the cinema, Rent on DVD or just wait for it to be on the telly?

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
Probably not.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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