Sunday, 4 January 2015

Film Review: "Penguins of Madagascar" (2014).

From the first trailer, the lines "You know the Penguins of Madagascar. But what you don't know is that they've have been leading a double life as secret agents..." reveals what we're in for when watching Penguins of Madagascar. This computer-animated action comedy film, directed by Simon J. Smith and Eric Darnell, written by Michael Colton & John Aboud and Brandon Sawyer, and produced by DreamWorks Animation. It is a spin-off of the Madagascar film series. The film follows the penguins Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private join forces with undercover organization The North Wind to stop the villainous Dr. Octavius Brine from destroying the world as we know it in their very own spy thriller.

A direct-to-video film featuring the penguins had been in the works since 2005, when the first Madagascar film was released, with a release date planned for 2009. In March 2011, it was announced that the penguin characters would be given their own feature film, similar to the 2011 Puss in Boots movie spin-off of Shrek (2001), to be directed by Simon J. Smith (Bee Movie (2007)), produced by Lara Breay, and written by Alan J. Schoolcraft and Brent Simons (Megamind (2010)). In July 2012, at Comic-Con, it was announced that the film, titled The Penguins of Madagascar, would be released in 2015. Robert Schooley, one of the producers of The Penguins series, said that the film would be unrelated to the TV series of the same name, but added that that could always change. In August 2013, it was reported that Benedict Cumberbatch and John Malkovich joined the cast. Malkovich, who had been offered the role of Dr. Octavius Brine three and a half years before the film's release, thought that it would be funny to use his voice for an octopus.

.The film features the voices of Tom McGrath, Chris Miller, Conrad Vernon, Christopher Knights, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Malkovich, Peter Stormare and Ken Jeong. The cast gave hilarious performance with McGrath, Miller, Vernon and Knights as sharp and funny as always for the famous and lovable penguins we all love. Cumberbatch, Stomare and Jeong also gave performances that made me 'crack-up' laughing. Malkovich, despite giving a classic animated supervillain approach, his jokes however were rather cheesey. Every time Dave gives a direct order to his octopus cronies he forms a well known celebrity's name. These names include Nicholas Cage, Drew Barrymore, Hugh Jackman, etc. For example, during one point in the film, Dave tells his henchmen to man the battlestations. He does so by saying "Hugh, Jack, Man the battlestations." Likewise, in the film, Dave tells another one of his henchmen, named Nicolas, to cage the penguins.

It isn't deep or groundbreaking, but what it lacks in profundity, Penguins of Madagascar more than makes up for with an abundance of wit, visual sparkle, and effervescent charm. It is colorful, clever enough, free of cloying showbiz in-jokes, action-packed without being ridiculous about it and even well choreographed.

Simon says Penguins of Madagascar receives:

See my review for Madagascar: Europe's Most Wanted at

No comments:

Post a Comment