In the DreamWorks new animation “The Croods” co-written and co-directed by Chris Sanders and Kirk De Micco, Eep, a teenage cave-woman, has been told all her life to always be afraid, and that curiosity can be dangerous. Her father, Grug, is overprotective and stubborn, always putting safety first. Along with her mother, grandmother, baby sister, and younger brother, they make up a family called “the Croods.” One day, Eep leaves the safety of her cave and meets a young man named Guy, who informs her that the world is ending. As mountains split and lava emerges on the surface, the cave that the Croods had been living in crumbles to reveal a passageway to a mysterious and lush landscape of new things. Together with Guy, the Croods embark on a life changing-adventure to escape the apocalypse of the pre-historic world.
“The Croods” is a film about creativity, and discovering curiosity. I enjoyed the opening sequence, where the entire family works together to get a hard-earned meal. It was interesting how they all cooperated to obtain an egg for their breakfast, and how little food they had at the time. The film is a great movie for kids, with a lot of wit and imagination. The movie is very humorous, especially in physical humor; such as when one of the Croods catches on fire and fights through dry grass. Another thing that was funny was that Grug was always hoping that his mother-in-law would die, probably because she was burdening the group. The visuals are stunning, such as the endless shades of green in the rainforest, and the color of the various creatures of the Crood’s universe.
“The Croods” does have flaws, however. First of all, Belt, Guy’s pet sloth, really overused the phrase “dun dun dun”, describing the apocalypse. the first time it was funny, by it gets old after a while. Also, the family was trying to get past a mountain to escape the end of the world, but wouldn’t the natural disasters and the world ending be the same throughout the earth? Another flaw was when the family was walking through a huge maze, they all miraculously ended up in the same place.
I noticed many similarities between Guy and Hiccup from “How to Train Your Dragon,” one of my favorite films, co-directed by Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois. Guy and Hiccup are skinny and brainy, about the same age, and both know much more than everybody else around them. Guy discovered how to make fire and could find ways around obstacles that the cavemen couldn’t.
Overall, the Croods is an exciting film, with a lot of humor and heart. I give it 4 starfish! It has amazing visuals and a compelling story. Its moral: Embrace change and never be afraid.
Copyright 2013 by Perry S. Chen