Monday, October 29, 2012

Second Croods Review Hits The Net

Pink Monorail's Shelly Valladolid recently saw a sneak preview of The Croods, and she liked it! A lifelong Disney fan and author of the upcoming book, Manufacturing the Magic: A History of the American Theme Park, Valladolid is well versed in both cartoons and their creators. This is immediately apparent in her review of The Croods, where the first thing she raves about is:

Finally, we get to see one of [Chris Sanders'] “GIRLS”!  He’s tied with Freddie Moore and Doug Sneyd for my fave “girly” artists. It’s amazing how Eep is definitely a Sanders Girl but also definitely Emma Stone.

Ms. Stone wasn't the only voice actor Valladolid was impressed with, though.

One of my companions said afterward, “That was Nicholas Cage? I didn’t know he could act!” Ha ha. Very funny. But you forget who the voices are and get involved – emotionally – with the characters.

I know that DreamWorks pays a lot of money to have marquee names attached to their 'toons, but being able to "forget" those names while watching a film is probably the BEST compliment you can give a voice actor.

Back to Chris Sanders! Sanders specializes in drawing two things: Curvy girls and cute critters. Valladolid already told us that she adored Eep. But what did she think of The Croods' creatures?

There are owl cats, and horrible beautiful bird things, and amazing sea creatures in the desert…really, really imaginative and fully believable in this world. [...] You might be seeing lots of artwork of what looks like a big green tiger thing. The filmmakers are calling it a Macawnivore. Be warned: if you own a dog and live near a movie theater, give them doggie downers to save their sanity, because about 5/6 of the way through the film, it is featured in a moment where all of the females and a good half of the males in the theater will put their fists up to their mouths and emit a sound that only dogs can hear, because it is so adorable that if adorable could kill you, Chris Sanders would be a mass murderer.  An adorable, adorable mass murderer.

"If adorable could kill you, Chris Sanders would be a mass murderer. An adorable, adorable mass murderer."

GREAT PULL-QUOTE! Is it too late to slap that on the movie poster?

As for the look of the film, Valladolid LOVED it.

The visuals are stunning. The worlds that Sanders puts these characters into -and the fauna with which he and his stellar team inhabit them – are jaw-droppingly amazing.

The few complaints she does have sound relatively minor.

The action scene at the beginning is kind of boring, and the derivative joke is hammered too many times.  I get it, I get it, what they’re doing is just like modern ________.  Okay, enough all ready.  The second act gets a little slow.  Okay, we get it. ____ is threatened by how much the others love _____.  Move ON!

With the exception of "the action scene at the beginning," these are all things that could be nipped and tucked if the filmmakers felt the need.

All in all, though? Valladolid gives it her seal of approval.

The ending of The Croods is strong, believable, and even though these folks are just a little before the right time…human. I want to encourage you to look past the trailer (the film is NOTHING like Brave, except that you care about the characters) and give the film a shot.

Hmn. I guess I'd be willing to "give the film a shot." Maybe. We'll see...

To read Valladolid's review of The Croods, click here.

Related: Early Croods Review Raves: Cloris Leachman "Hilarious"

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