Friday, February 15, 2013

The Croods at Berlinale pt. 3:
An INSANELY Enlightened & Effusive Review!

The only real downside to blogging about an unreleased film are the recurring moments of doubt. No matter how beautiful the leaked images are, no matter how promising the trailers appear, there are inevitably going to be times when you wonder, 'Did I back a losing race horse here?'

It can't be helped. Or at least, I can't help it. After all, I've put hours and hours (added up: DAYS AND DAYS) of my life into blogging about The Croods, drawing comics about The Croods and making herky-jerky gifs of The Croods. You put that much time into ANYTHING, and if you're even the least bit glass-half-empty, you're gonna have periods of profound uncertainty. If Touched By An Angel is to be believed, religious people suffer something similar. They call it 'a crisis of faith.' I'm not sure what artists call theirs, but it caused van Gogh to slice off his ear. (And I LOVE MY EARS! They're my third favorite erogenous zone!)

That's why Federico Gironi's Croods review from has me feeling so good. Gironi's review was originally written in Italian, but even through the garbled babble that Google Translate gave me, it's easy to see that Gironi LOVED The Croods. Re-printed below are some of the faith-affirming highlights.

Berlinale 2013: Review of The Croods, the new film from DreamWorks Animation by Federico Gironi  

Those who, judging by the first images and the first trailer, looked at The Croods with skepticism, should reconsider. [...] Because the new standard bearer for DreamWorks Animation is able to surprise positively, both for the story it tells and for the visual imagination and humor that it evokes. 

The world [...] is [...] populated by creatures [...] that seem to come from a psychedelic mash-up between Alice in Wonderland and the worlds of Dr. Seuss. [...] Movie fans will love the colorful and imaginative creatures and the well-chosen characters and characterizations of the Croods, as well as the film's themes.

Because in the end, the story of The Croods, as well as the love between the two young people and the jealousy of the father [...], is the clash between those who, out of fear, stigmatize and shun like the plague anything new, and those who instead, perhaps with a hint of utopianism, want to meet the future without blinders, without fear, without upsetting or disturbing what is new.

The Croods is not an evolution in the way that animated films are made, but a progression in the way that animated films tell their stories.
A movie in which the good feelings are there, but are never schmaltzy. Where the sense of family is never pedantic familism, but slapstick, humorous, sarcastic and even naughty! (The protagonist hopes every morning that his mother-in-law died during the night.)

Above all, The Croods is a film that pushes the idea of a freedom that is not ​​an island, but a common ground to share, a place that respects all personalities, preferences and inclinations. A place to mingle and, then, to progress.


"The new standard-bearer for DreamWorks Animation"?


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