Fun but lacks the Heart of the first one
10 November 2012
After the very successful animated film Ice Age we get treated too a sequel. 4 years since the release of the first film and in that time frame you would expect that the filmmakers would come up with a good sequel. I will say that the film is creative and fun but the film is missing something that the first one had makes the sequel decent but not great.

In this film we have our three heroes returning for another adventure. When it seems like the entire world is melting, Manny, Diego, Sid all set out to find a "boat" at the other end of the valley when Manny begins to think that he might be the last Mammoth on Earth he finds another one with a very unusual problem.

The story I find in this one to be much more creative than the first one. Enough though to some existent it a "Noah's Ark" story but the first one was really a hybrid between Shrek and Monster's Inc but the film had enough charming characters and laughs to let us look away from that problem. So I give this film a lot more credit for trying to come up with something different than the rest. The film does get pretty creative in the environment that it is set in. There is a lot more personification in this film than the last one making the animals more human than the last one. I think this takes away from one of the aspects that made the original so charming and funny was the characters were pretty much just like the animals they were portraying and didn't involve too much human like behavior. In this film they have schools and pools and swimming and granted this is an animated kid's film but I think sticking to the first one's style of play would have been better.

The Humor in the film is also for the most part very good. Just like in the first one we get a little bit of everything. There is some smart humor that might blow over the heads of the young children however not that much. We get some great slapstick humor which will have the children and adults laughing and some dirty inside jokes that is kept very low key and very much implied but as quagmire once said in family guy (paraphrasing slightly), "You know where this is going, it's all implied. The kids don't know but we do."

However with that being said the humor just doesn't match the humor of the first one. Although this film is funny and does have some great laugh out loud moments it just doesn't have the same charm and comedic timing and trimmings that the first one had. This one lowers itself down to mostly potty and slapstick humor. It feels a bit lazy and the younger ones won't mind and it will entertain all but for most of us we were hoping for a bit more. That's not at all to say this movie isn't funny.

There is something else that is missing in this movie that the last one had. That little something is a very basic element of the human spirit. That basic element is the heart and soul of this movie. The first one we had Manny's dark past and Diego's change of heart and Sid's lovable, want everybody to be a family type character and all that wrapped into one big quest to big a lost child home. That was the heart and soul of that film and it succeeded because that emotional heart and center. Also all those themes and stories were all interconnected and played in and out throughout the film. In this we don't get much of that and this is the main reason why I think this film is not nearly as good as the first one. This one we get mostly a comedy with not much of anything else. In this we get a silly romance that doesn't hold much weight. Manny has insecurity issues with the possibility of being the last Mammoth. Diego has a fear of the water and Sid thinks he deserves more respect (and nearly kills himself in the process of trying getting some). All in all there isn't much here. That's not to say the film isn't entertaining because it certainly is and you will have fun watching it but don't expect any more of it.

The stars have returned from the original first film to the sequel and deliver some good voice work. Ray Romano returns as Manny and is funny as he always is in whatever he does. Denis Leary also returns as Diego and his role is dumbed down to a funny sidekick but Denis does great voice work. John Leguizamo is back as the funny; stupid but lovable Sid the Sloth and we get the same funny character we got last time and always provide us with a great laugh.

Scrat is back! The little dopey Wild Coyote of this generation. He has absolutely nothing to do with the main storyline and you know what? I could not care less he is a welcome distraction as his quest for the nuts continues and gets himself involved in more wacky situations.

A newcomer to the cast includes Queen Latifah as the Mammoth that is having an identity crisis and is funny but nothing special as Ellie. Josh Peck and Seann William Scott play a possum gang of brothers who loves causing trouble and is the best new addition to this film. Both brilliant with great chemistry and remain funny throughout.

The film with everything together is a very entertaining film and remains funny throughout however lacks the good heart that made the first so great and the humor is up to par with the original however it is a decent sequel.

Final Score

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