The Croods: A New Age is the 2020 sequel to the original Dreamworks film which came out in 2016, and is directed by Joel Crawford in his first feature-length directorial debut. While I have only seen bits and pieces of the original, it would appear that The Croods: A New Age picks up essentially where the first film left off, and delivers a colorful, zany, and bubbly adventure that has enough strong character moments and cleverness to make for a wonderfully Saturday morning cartoon-esque adventure. Featuring the voice talents with the likes of Nicholas Cage, Emma Stone, and Ryan Reynolds, The Croods: A New Age boasts great animation, surprisingly good laughs, and a mostly engaging adventure story done with cartoony verve. There is a strong sense of familiarity here, but the creative team behind this film makes sure the movie stays freshly funny and compelling enough to last through the terse 95-minute runtime.
The voice talents of the film are expectedly great here, with Cage, Stone, and Reynolds delivering phenomenal voiceover work, alongside the rest of the cast (which includes names like Catherine Keener and Peter Dinklage). Adding to the great voice work is the delightfully fizzy animation for the film, which boasts fantastic creature designs, colorful landscapes, and a creative reimagination of the prehistoric age.
Overall, director Crawford (alongside the screenplay and story team) create a clever, funny, and sometimes heartwarming adventure full of genuine surprises and wit. The story is ultimately thin, but the The Croods: A New Age overcomes its moments of familiarity thanks to a number of interesting story developments, visual gags, and a fast pace that makes sure the story never drags. Ultimately, the film isn't destined to become an animated classic, but I found myself more often entertained than not with this warm and funny sequel. With a sequel coming so many years after the original, there was some worry that this would be a cashgrab, but The Croods: A New Age successfully ushers in the next chapter of this prehistoric family.
|The Croods: A New Age channels the zaniness of a Saturday morning cartoon in this surprisingly warm and clever sequel to the original 2013 film.