Tragedy strikes early in The Croods, when the prehistoric family is forced to leave their cave after it's destroyed in an earthquake. The world as they know it begins to change before their eyes and all they want is safety…that is except Eep (Emma Stone) the eldest daughter. She is the only one in the family that longs for the sunlight and a world outside of the cave. Late one night exploring she comes across Guy (Ryan Reynolds) a prehistoric boy who understands that the world is transforming, and it's no longer safe. Eep is fascinated by this boy-genius because of his curiosity and his ability to make fire and other useful tools. Begrudgingly the family follows Guy on his quest to find the world of Tomorrow.
Nicholas Cage voices Grug, the father of the family, who has always been the decision maker and who is now struggling with the idea that he is no longer useful and necessary. Like Eep, the rest of the family, Ugga (mom), Thunk (brother), Gran and even baby become smitten with Guy and his clever inventions. Of course, Grug also resents the growing feelings developing between Eep and Guy. The central themes of this movie are family, letting go of your fear and learning to embrace change and the unknown.
Scott and I were the only two adults in the theater without children, and yet I still had fun. I do have plans to see it again next weekend with my nephews, and there is something magical about watching children become enchanted with a movie. I am sure my movie-going experience will be heightened by their presence.
Dreamworks has made a solid family movie. It is amusing; the animation is inventive and the voice actors were strong. I especially enjoyed the creative hybrid mix of prehistoric animals. I found myself laughing out loud a number of times in the movie, which is exactly what you want in a comedy—although I could have used more humor directed towards adults. I give it a B.
The Croods was definitely buoyed by the talents of the voice actors and the amazingly lush visuals of the film. Along with the bigger stars, I thought Clark Duke was very funny as Thunk and the always fantastic Cloris Leachman scored every time as Gran. They also made very good use of auxiliary characters like Belt and the baby Sandy who got laughs without saying a single word. As an adult without kids though, I thought that the movie could have tried a little harder to play to the grown-ups in the theatre who made up at least a third of the audience, a la Shrek. Ultimately, if you have kids I think they will love this, and you will like it a little too. B-