152 user 165 critic

Penguins of Madagascar (2014)

2:31 | Trailer
Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private join forces with undercover organization The North Wind to stop the villainous Dr. Octavius Brine from destroying the world as we know it.


Michael Colton (screenplay by), John Aboud (screenplay by) | 5 more credits »
4,849 ( 93)
8 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom McGrath ... Skipper (voice)
Chris Miller ... Kowalski (voice)
Christopher Knights Christopher Knights ... Private (voice)
Conrad Vernon ... Rico (voice)
John Malkovich ... Dave (voice)
Benedict Cumberbatch ... Classified (voice)
Ken Jeong ... Short Fuse (voice)
Annet Mahendru ... Eva (voice)
Peter Stormare ... Corporal (voice)
Andy Richter ... Mort (voice)
Danny Jacobs ... King Julien (voice)
Sean Charmatz Sean Charmatz ... Cricket (voice)
Werner Herzog ... Documentary Filmmaker (voice)
Stephen Kearin ... Pilot / Aquarium Employee (voice)
Kelly Cooney Kelly Cooney ... Mermaid Penguin (voice)


Super spy teams aren't born - they're hatched. Discover the secrets of the greatest and most hilarious covert birds in the global espionage biz: Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private. These elitists of the elite are joining forces with a chic undercover organization, The North Wind. Led by handsome Eurasian wolf Agent Classified (we could tell you his name, but then - you know). Together, they must stop the villainous Dr. Octavius Brine, from destroying the world as we know it. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The movie event that will blow their cover See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild action and some rude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Dave is fairly similar to Dr. Blowhole from the TV series in that he's a mad scientist with a team of minions. See more »


When the baby Penguins are trying to rescue the egg, both the Penguins and the egg fall down the same path and then fall when the same snowbank breaks off. But the snowbank shouldn't even be there for the Penguins to land on in the first place. See more »


[when Dave breaks in his own ray to get Private]
Private: Hi-ya!
[punches Dave in the face with his butt-hand]
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the middle of the credits, there is a scene where the penguins fix Private back to normal using Mort's cuteness. See more »


Featured in AniMat's Reviews: Minions (2015) See more »


Afro Circus / I Like To Move It
Written by Chris Rock, Erick Morillo and Mark Quashie
Performed by Chris Rock and Danny Jacobs
See more »

User Reviews

An uneven film and could have been much better but has a lot of entertaining things
14 December 2014 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Penguins of Madagascar may be one of Dreamworks' weakest(Prince of Egypt, How to Train Your Dragon and Shrek it's not, it's better than Bee Movie and Shark Tale though) and is nowhere near as good as the wonderful TV series, but from the reviews here I was expecting it to be a waste of time but instead(personal opinion) got a very uneven but entertaining film. It is badly let down by the story, it started off delightfully but much of it was rather tired, formulaic and over-stretched(like an extended episode from the series), especially in the third act which was draggy and clichéd at points. It also tries to incorporate a lot of story strands other than being just an origin story which is commendable but it did make the film a little over-stuffed and lacking in focus. Pacing was an issue here, Penguins of Madagascar wasn't ever dull, in fact the problem was the opposite in that everything was so frantic that there were frequent points where it felt incredibly rushed and in serious need of a slowing down. Because the humour and storytelling came by so fast, you have little time to breathe and you are likely to find that you don't catch every gag and bit of dialogue or follow the story entirely.

The animation is very good this said, not the best there's ever been but the colours are bright and colourful, the backgrounds are detailed and smooth, the editing is tight and the characters move easily. The music score is very catchy and most of the voice acting is superb. Tom McGrath and Christopher Knights are excellent as Skipper and Private and provide the emotional heart that the film has, Peter Stormare is fun and Benedict Cumberbatch- as ever showing showing an ability to turn not so strong material to something more- brings distinguished class and witty comic timing to Classified. But it is John Malkovich who is especially good, he's brilliantly off the wall as the villain, being both hilarious and sinister, and has some of the best lines. Werner Herzog is also very entertaining as a documentary narrator sort of character. Two of the voice actors don't come off so well, Ken Jeong has very little to do and his voice doesn't really fit his character- I couldn't help being reminded of the voice he used to voice Kim-Ly in Turbo and it was jarring- and Chris Miller did sound bored and rather arrogant sounding as Kowalski.

In terms of characters, the penguins are entertaining enough but they do fare better as scene stealing supporting characters than the lead characters in a feature film and their personalities have been far more individual before, Private is very relatable actually but Kowalski comes across as an arrogant douche which was a turn off and Rico is bland. Of the rest of the characters, the most interesting of them is Dave/Dr. Brine, part of it is to do with Malkovich's voice acting, part of it is the clever character design and part of it is the writing. The rest however are one-dimensional and lacking in individuality, if I were to be asked which characters I would remember most it would be Private and Dave/Dr. Brine, but the others not so much. The script has a lot of parts where it works wonderfully but others where it falls flat, there are some smart wordplay, witty dialogue that would make one smile and some hilarious celebrity puns that adults will love(they will go over the heads of children however) but there are some jokes that do come over as contrived and like they were recycled from somewhere else. For instance Dave's name keeps getting forgotten, a running gag that was funny that was funny the first few times but got stale for the rest of them. The action comes by thick and fast and is enormous fun to watch, the pratfalls are very silly but look good and do amuse at all(children will enjoy them), particularly fun were the chase sequence in Venice and the final showdown.

All in all, could have been much better, Penguins of Madagascar is a very uneven film and is one of Dreamworks' weakest but it was an entertaining watch. 6/10 Bethany Cox

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English | Italian | Mandarin

Release Date:

26 November 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Penguins of Madagascar See more »


Box Office


$132,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,447,444, 30 November 2014

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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