Next up on Netflix A-Z is our P selection! It really wasn’t much of a decision here! I haven’t seen an animated film in a while and I just needed time to relax and just be entertained. Mind you, I’m a fan of Madagascar to a certain extent but my feeling towards Madagascar is something like my current feeling of Ice Age. However, Madagascar has always been able to entertain me a little more. I guess that’s a plus so there are higher hopes of a spin-off movie working.
Let’s check it out! 🙂
Penguins of Madagascar (2014)
Director: Eric Darnell & Simon J. Smith
Voice Cast: Tom McGrath, Chris Miller, Christopher Knights, Conrad Vernon, John Malkovich, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ken Jeong, Annet Mahendru, Peter Stormare
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.-IMDB
The goal of most animated films is to entertainment. Penguins of Madagascar should have one goal: entertaining families. Animations are aimed towards a younger audience usually and Madagascar franchise has always had that sort of appeal.
Penguins is a hard one to pinpoint. It really is a sequel to the previous Madagascar since it shows them escaping the circus. It gives it some continuity and context to what is going on.They definitely have comedic value. This animation should be probably more engaging for children especially with the cute and cuddly penguins and the not too long run time mixed with constant action and some funny visual comedy. Its also quite colorful and energetic. For adults watching this, it still has a fun value and the humor has its smart moments especially using actor names in the context of sentences. We had a good laugh over catching those bits.
While our heroes are the silly penguins and its a lot based on their absurd and spontaneous plans, it adds in a villain just for them called Dave who is an octopus that lost its popularity at zoos because of penguins. Dave disguises intelligently as a successful scientist and while being a villain, he also is pretty old school especially when he is being voiced by the talented John Malkovich and is bad at technology. In contrast, our side heros is an elite group called the North Wind put together but a wolf, polar bear, seal and snow owl. An abnormal group still but one that has some fun moments when interactimg with the penguins since they are rather more professional and uptight and the penguins are not. All this is to say that the balance and character design is done well.
One of the outstanding parts of any animation are their voice actors and this cast has some big names that add a lot more to the characters. I previously mentioned John Malkovich as our villain. I’ve always thought that he has a rather distinctive voice and he just grasped the character of Dave so well that it actually made us find him rather fun to watch. In North Wind, there is Benedict Cumberbatch (which I totally did not recognize before), Ken Jeong and Peter Stormare. While I don’t think that the North Wind group in particular was a huge part of the movie or even memorable, I do think that Ken Jeong and Peter Stormare did a good job as their roles as the dorky (and sometimes angry-ish) seal and the big softy polar bear respectively. On that note, our stars of the show Penguins hold a few familiar looking names but none other than Chris Miller than I seem to recollect however, they are enthusiastic and energetic and breathes a lot of life into the Penguins we know and love from the Madagascar series, keeping them as fun to watch.
Overall, Penguins of Madagascar was a fun and entertaining watch. It doesn’t take a lot of attention to understand whats going on because it has a simple plot. I can say that because I watched this 2.5 times over three days but each time I was doing something else and still enjoyed it but didn’t get lost despite missing different parts. Its a nice one to put in the background. However, I do believe there is some appeal to kids because of its bright colors and energetic characters along with a rather action-packed and/or silly parts that are put rather frequently throughout the film. Penguins of Madagascar is a good one!
Have you seen Penguins of Madagascar? Are you a fan of the Madagascar franchise?