I don't know if it was the flood of CG movies out or something I heard, but I wasn't really looking forward to seeing this movie. But I gotta tell ya, I was totally surprised and wound up really liking the movie. It's not the best thing ever, but there are a few great things: First of all, the visuals are great, and the way they animate the water is absolutely amazing, from standard background water scenes to the surfing scenes, they did some amazing stuff. I was surprised to like the way they did the movie from the perspective a documentary, as it lent to some interesting camera shots.
The voices were a mixed bag, with some of them being bland (some fill in penguins) but others really standing out. Jeff Daniels does a great job and Shia LaBeouf has such an easy flow to his voice, that it fits his role in the film perfectly. I wasn't really blown away by Zooey Deschanel or James Woods in this one, especially considering how great Woods' voice was in Hercules, but they were okay.
But in the end, the fact is that I just really liked the story, I liked the message, and I was surprised they pulled it off. I guess I'm a sucker for a message with a feel-good "message" at the end, and this movie surprised me by having a bit of one.
So while it's not my favorite CG movie ever, it surprised me at how good it was. I give it a solid 8 out of 10 stars.
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