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I'd have to say this is one of the best animated films I've ever seen.
I liked it the first time but really appreciated it on the second
viewing, just a few weeks ago. I can see why sequel is doing such great
business at the box office. Apparently, a lot of people liked this
A gorgeous color palette (man, this looks good) and a lot of good adult (but clean) humor make this a big winner. The opening 3-4-minute scene with "Scat," is excellent as are subsequent interludes with him. "Sid" the sloth (voiced by John Leguizano), however, provides the main humor in the movie. He usually has something funny to say throughout the movie.
Ray Romano is the voice of the mammoth, the big character of the film, literally, while Denis Leary is the ferocious bad-guy-turned-good sabertooth tiger
This isn't just humor and pretty colors but a nice, sentimental story of how a little baby softens up a couple of tough characters. This isn't interrupted with a lot of songs, either: one only brief one and there is nothing offensive, language-wise.
If more animated movies were this good, I'd own more.
With a relatively small budget for an animated film of only $60 million the
people at Fox Animation and Blue Sky Studios have done an incredible
They have combined state-of-the-art digital animation, the perfectly cast voice talents of Ray Romano, John Leguizamo and Dennis Leary (among many others) to create a highly entertaining, family film with a strong message about cooperation, friendship and caring for your fellow herd members. And how sometimes it takes many different creatures to make up a herd.
While watching this film I got a strong political message about getting along with the people that share your space -- maybe it should be required viewing for all world leaders!
David Newman -- yet another member of the Newman family of Hollywood composers -- provides a superb score that is not intrusive yet serves to move the action along and, at times, is positively toe tapping.
The overall look of the film is incredible; an intensely coloured, strangely believable fantasyland of snow, geysers, mud, rocks and ice. The individual characters were delightfully believable too, with the facial expressions of Ray Romano's Manfred' being a particular treat.
The entire sequence with the DoDos will leave no doubt as to where the expression `Dumb as a DoDo comes from.'
This is a good family film that keeps the things that could alarm or frighten children pretty much sanitized -- but real nonetheless.
It would be a great movie to see in the theater and to buy for home.
I first saw Ice Age in the Subiaco Cinemas when it came out, back in
'02. I was only 13 at the time, but even then I liked it. It had some
sort of warmth.
We've had it on video for a number of years now and no matter how many times you watch it, it never gets boring. This is because of the one element which makes it different from all of the other 3D animations made at the time - The characters have no particular 'home' which they leave. They are nomads, and that's really refreshing and uplifting to watch.
Also, each individual character on the surface, appear to be just putting up with each other, but they're really all good friends. As well, all of the characters have their own charms (even the bad guys). Sid the sloth is charming in his annoying, over-affectionate and naive sort of way. Manny is adorable in his depressed, reclusive character, and so on and so forth.
Another great point about the movie is the beauty of the animation. All the environments and characters were modeled originally by clay, giving the film an artistic edge.
Another aspect that adds to the feel of the movie, is that gender means very little. There are hardly any female characters, but you don't really realize that until after you watch it a few times and even then it has little effect on the way you view the film. Due to this, there's also no mention of a nuclear family which would really be pathetic in a setting like the ice age.
All in all, Ice Age is a great movie and is proof on how much effort was put into 3d animations before Shrek 2 and The Incredibles came out.
This is obviously aimed at the same market as Monsters Inc and Shrek, but is
different in its less cartoony feel (despite the deliberately cartoony
characteristics of the lead creatures). The story is not one that had a
massive in your face moral at the end (its more like its tugging at your
shirt sleeves) but chooses just to tell a story about relationships between
different "animals." You know the outcome, but you can't help being drawn
The characters themselves are far more than their voices (the advantage of less famous actors doing the voices), unlike most Disney movies. They are well rounded and completely believable, strangely. The group dynamics are brilliantly well presented and the character revelations and quirks are subtle and enjoyable. You will find yourself rooting for them far sooner than you would like to think.
The animation is brilliant, as you would expect, and you will be praying for the opportunity to go on the ice slide in the movie. You will fall in love with the characters, especially the comic relief of the prehistoric squirrel and its desperate attempts to bury its nuts. I came out wanting the obligatory merchandise, especially the sloth toy, only to be disappointed the next day when I couldn't find anything vaguely related.
Which, strangely, makes the movie all the more pure.
Better than Monsters Inc or Shrek.
`Ice Age' emerges as one of the better animated films of recent years,
cleverly designed and even more cleverly written. Scenarists Michael
Michael J. Wilson and Peter Ackerman have devised a story set 20,000
ago about an unlikely trio of companions who find themselves making a
trek through a harsh environment in an effort, ostensibly, to return a
human to the tribe from which he has become separated. The triumvirate
made up of a deadpan, cynical mammoth, a wisecracking, over-the-top sloth
(whose mile-a-minute mouth more than makes up for his legendary slowness)
and a malevolent saber-tooth tiger, who learns a thing or two about
friendship and teamwork before the adventure is over.
`Ice Age' is at its most amusing in those scenes in which the characters make prescient jokes about their own place in the evolutionary scheme of things. One particularly clever scene involves the three travelers discovering what looks like an underground museum of natural history encased in ice, replete with ancient creatures caught in naturally occurring, chain-of-life exhibits. Like most animated films set in the past, `Ice Age' derives much of its humor through the use of anachronism. We chuckle to hear these creatures applying modern, scientific knowledge to the pre-scientific era in which they are living.
The animators and designers have done a beautiful job in achieving just the right look for this tale. The backgrounds have a colorful, clean, streamlined look to them, and the animals themselves, in their appearance and design, provide a witty commentary on evolutionary history. Ray Romano, John Leguizamo and Denis Leary do superb voiceover work, each achieving just the right tone for the character he has been assigned to play. One could wish, perhaps, for a bit less sentimentality at the end, but that is a minor quibble in a film that works so well for both children and adults. The kids will revel in the cuteness of the animals and the clever action sequences, while adults will savor the sly knowingness of the evolutionary and historical in-jokes. Not bad in an era when most films can't find a way to please even ONE audience demographic.
In what amounts to a throw-back to the early, manually-animated cartoons,
"Ice Age" chooses a very simple story around which is wrapped clever and
exciting animation. Highly intelligent sabre-tooth tigers want to get
revenge for the killing of one of their pack, so plot to steal the baby son
of the human tribe leader. A goofy sloth (Lugiezamo) and a kind wooly
mammoth (Ray Romano) rescue the child and attempt to find his parents,
joined by a sly tiger (Denis Leary) who at first is planning to lead all of
them into a corner so his tiger friends can help get the child back and eat
the mammoth. But a series of events, and the tiger's being saved by the
mammoth, causes all of them to "bond".
The DVD is flawless. The Dolby surround sound is remarkably good, truly surrounding you with sound. The direct digital to DVD video transfer is as good, colorful, and sharp as the other recent ones like "Toy Story 2", "Shrek", and "Monsters Inc." There is a whole second disk of "extras" which take you through the whole animated film-making process. Also a short animated film "Bunny" which won an oscar in 1998. Plus another "short" which shows the little squirrel, 20,000 years later, in an ice block drifting onto a deserted island, and his pounding of a coconut into the ground triggering the continental drift which resulted in the present day continents! Very inventive and funny.
Watching "Ice Age", my wife and I noticed that much of the action and pratfalls reminded us of the old "Roadrunner" cartoons. In the DVD extras the director mentions that those old cartoons of Chuck Jones were the insriration of many of the scenes. Yes, a throw-back to the old manually-animated cartoons, and a worthy tribute.
Just saw ICE AGE, a very funny and especially nice looking film. The story
is simple but effective, the characters lovable and nicely fleshed out but
what really shines is the digital set design.
More inspired by traditional animated movies than reality, the designs give you a really, really nice looking world in a astounding use of colour. Sometimes the touches of reality shine through (especially the water was impressive), but nonetheless, it's a fantasy-world based on reality. Including loads of vast landscapes especially helps to minimise the costs of rendering.
Pixar films shine with technical brilliance, this one shines with effective uses of technical know-how.
Enough technical babble, the film's entertaining, family-friendly and sometimes just hilariously funny.
This was great. I liked it better than I did Shrek, by far. 'Manfred' and
the Squirrel really take the cake here-excellant voice work, nice animation
of the character faces, Denis Leary was a hoot too....with just the right
amount of an edge, as is usual for him.
Some of the vignettes-the Dodos, (You've got three melons), etc are right up there with anything Pixar has done. I also thought that the little montage of Mannfred's parent's(cave drawings come to life) were done well too.
As for the messages-'Non-trad families are okay too-', people can work together, etc.-well, all are pretty obvious and all that-but it's not hammered home ala Disney, and you also don't have anyone breaking out into song, either.
See it for the Mammoth and the squirrel, though the Sloth is fun too. Cute kid baby too, not far removed from 'Boo' in Monsters Inc.
*** outta ****
Excellent computer-generated animated feature that makes a case for one of the finest films of 2002. It is the frozen era and prehistoric animals try to find their way to land that is warmer and drier. An early group of human hunters become the hunted themselves as a group of sabertooth tigers begin to plot revenge. As an attack occurs, a small infant child is taken out of harm's way. Enter a kind wooly mammoth (voiced by the priceless Ray Romano) and a silly sloth (voiced by John Leguizamo) who find the young child and decide to return it to the humans. It appears that a sabertooth tiger (Denis Leary) is helping the duo, but his motives are devious as he is trying to lead them all into a trap of other sabertooth tigers. The film is another great animated piece of film-making that has important messages for the youngsters and is also highly entertaining for all audiences. 5 stars out of 5.
I saw the movie with two grown children. Although it was not as clever as Shrek, I thought it was rather good. In a movie theatre surrounded by children who were on spring break, there was not a sound so I know the children all liked it. There parents also seemed engaged. The death and apparent death of characters brought about the appropriate gasps and comments. Hopefully people realize this movie was made for kids. As such, it was successful although I liked it too. Personally I liked the Scrat!!
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