Ice Age has recently spluttered with its latest effort, but animated films set in prehistoric times still have some legs so long as the story continues to have some novelty, and comes with plenty of heart. The Croods succeed in all counts, having possibly the best animated cavemen family since The Flintstones, where we can laugh at their primal ways, and be in awe at the numerous set action pieces that's designed with plenty of kinetic energy in mind.
With recognizable voices casted as the characters such as Nicolas Cage, Emma Stone, and Ryan Reynolds, The Croods deal with the usual family friendly themes of the importance of the bonds that bind, blood running thicker than water, and that of friendship. And it balances its emotional moments carefully with light hearted ones mostly brought about by the character of the primate Belt, as the characters journey to get themselves to new ground as the tectonic plates start to introduce gulfs as they shift.
What was really brilliant about the screenplay was that it didn't introduce things for the sake of, with every element playing a key role at one point of the narrative, or another. And with this being set in the days nobody knows much about, plenty of creative energy got put into this to make it as vibrant and colourful as it can be, which makes for an extremely pleasant viewing experience, even if it took a while for the relatively ugly mugs of The Croods to slowly grow on you. If the best animated film has got to be selected now, then The Croods will win this recognition hands down.
You can read my review of The Croods at movieXclusive.com by clicking on the logo below.