Caveman's quest for change

Caveman's quest for change

Caveman's quest for change

The Croods
English (U) ¬¬¬¬
Directors: Chris Sanders,
Kirk de Micco
Cast: Voices of Nicholas Cage, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds, and others

After a slew of animated films, beginning with Ice Age, with Hollywood’s animated 3D flicks that revolve around scripts set in the not too distant past (How to Train Your Dragon, Brave), here comes The Croods, which is about a prehistoric family of cavemen, led by Grug (Cage).

Grug’s motto is “Never not be afraid”, and it is fear that keeps his family safely in a cave after sunset, emerging only for food. It is Grug’s survival tactics that have enabled his family to survive for so long when other cavemen have been eaten by giant cats or trampled by mammoths.

So far so good, until Grug’s curious daughter Eep (Stone) decides to follow a light. She meets Guy (Reynolds), who has discovered how to make and control “the sun in the hands” or fire. Not only is Guy innovative, but adventurous too. Eep is smitten by Guy, who slowly impresses Grug’s family with his inventions, such as shoes and umbrellas. Grug abhors Guy, more so since he knows a lot about what could happen in future.

One can draw similarities between Eep and the female protagonist in Brave, both that rebel against their dads and are red-haired. However, Eep is a better role model who delivers the message, “not to be scared of the dark” and that “change need not be bad”. This is one rare film where Dreamworks manages to beat Pixar. Speaking of change, there is no clear antagonist, even the deadly creatures of the forest are tame as the film folds.

Gone are the sidekicks, typical in Disney films of yore and with stunning visuals and zero pop-culture references, The Croods is as entertaining as Up, and make no mistake, not as boring as the last Ice Age installment. Parents be warned, the flick is certainly not for kids below seven.

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