Voices: Nicholas Cage,Emma Stone,Ryan Reynolds
Director: Kirk de Micco,Chris Sanders
The Indian Express rating: *** 1/2
A heroine who isn’t thin or beautiful,who is stronger and broader than her guy,who has straggly hair,who loves eating,who goes by the name Eep (Stone) and who recklessly seeks adventure. For that alone,let’s celebrate this latest animation from Dreamworks,The Croods.
However,there is much else to recommend in this story set in the Flintstone-era of cavemen and a world that’s fast changing. The Croods are the last of the families of cavemen in their area now remaining,against odds that the film quickly establishes. Her father Grug (Cage) keeps huddling the family into their cave for safety,and Eep,who loves the sun,keeps trying to stay out.
The connect is easily established: Eep wants to “follow the light”,Grug tells her “never not be afraid”,Eep will learn to “fly to tomorrow”,Grug keeps telling her “new is bad”.
Their world changes when ‘Guy’ (Reynolds) enters the picture. He is a rank higher in the evolutionary chain,having travelled far and wide,learnt to devise clothes and shoes out of animal skin,and more importantly,learnt how to make fire. It’s a beautiful scene when Eep sees fire for the first time — the sun that she always sought now apparently at her beck and call. Guy is a man of “ideas”,pitted against Grug,the man of brute force.
The story is disappointingly vague about why The Croods and Guy keep running,putting it all under the general heading of “going where the sun goes”,even as the earth keeps cracking up and exploding behind them. However,thankfully,you don’t wander about that much as the journey,complete with fantastical plants and animals,is interesting and funny enough — that too,without any songs.