DreamWorks brings a lively, loud and colorful animated sequel to the 2013 film.
The Croods are a prehistoric family, headed by dad Grug (voiced by Nicholas Cage), mom Ugga (Catherine Keener), teenage daughter Eep (Emma Stone), Gran (Cloris Leachman), a baby and Guy, a teen boy (Ryan Reynolds) who lives with the family in their primitive cave.
They’re a rough and tumble family, but very close and loving. They sleep in a big, jumbled pile on the ground, and you can’t tell where one body starts and one ends.
Papa Grug is very protective of his clan, but he especially has a watchful eye on Eep, who’s getting a little too friendly with Guy.
The family decides to leave their rustic cave and look for somewhere a little more comfortable. After a long trip, they come upon a lush, peaceful place that’s walked off from the dangers outside, however it’s already home to another family.
It’s home to the Betterman family, who welcome the Croods into their home. Father Phil (Peter Drinkage), mother Hope (Leslie Mann) and teen daughter Dawn (Kelly Marie Tran) have evolved to standing straight, wearing sandals and combing their hair.
They have plenty of food, a lush green yard, running water and indoor plumbing and the Croods fall in love with this new way of life.
The families get along at first, but of course it isn’t long before bedlam breaks out.
The characters are silly, the animation is terrific and the focus on the family unit is a nice touch.
The first half of the film is entertaining and fun however, the last 20 minutes had repetitive scenes of Punch Monkeys that punch the family over and over again. It got old – fast.
There could be some mixed signals within this latest animated adventure with a built-in-audience from a sequel which ran from 2015-2017.
Now, The Croods: A New Age arrives in theaters for families to gobble up after their Thanksgiving festivities during a global pandemic with optimism for vaccines on the horizon.
At least, the younger folks won’t mind being in the company again with the titular prehistoric clan, including bumbling Grug (Nicolas Cage), Ugga (Catherine Keener), Eep (Emma Stone), and Eep’s new boyfriend Guy (Ryan Reynolds, as well as Gran (Cloris Leachman).
As older viewers are reminded of small-screen ‘60s staples like The Flintstones, this follow-up has a new, evolved treehouse-dwelling family to them encounter – the Bettermans. There’s Phil (Peter Dinklage), Hope (Leslie Mann), and teenage daughter Dawn (Kelly Marie Tran).
Look for tension to arise, from the type of existence Grug wants to keep to Dawn’s complicating the Guy/Eep dynamic. It’s interspersed with colorful action where creature composites like wolf spiders and kangadillos appear.
With such a good voice cast, it doesn’t do them well when an angle about progress riling up nature or embracing the fact that divisiveness isn’t the answer unfolds in muddling fable fashion.
Nevertheless, if A New Age really can’t let its story marinade in any probing, pleasing way, a very bustling diversion, replete with incident, has much to behold from its visual aesthetic. The team of animators have created plenty of imagery lustrous often with the use of neon complemented well with proficient designs. A sparkly ebullience arrives in this respect without shooting in 3D for The Croods.