Reviews: Penguins Of Madagascar

You Get What You Expect

The jokes are well thought out, well executed and absolutely in tone with the characters. Skipper and Rico in particular really stand out in the flick. Skipper is, well, Skipper, and Ricoīs characteristics are overplayed to the point where he almost puts Kirby to shame with his black hole stomach, and at one point he even tries to eat Kowalski ! Flanderization ? Maybe, but it sure as hell works for me. Kowalski and Private are funny too, both never straying too far from their shtick.

I also enjoy how the movie handles the dynamic between Skipper and Private. Itīs cute, heartwarming and puts the characters in a new light, while keeping in tone with their personalities. Itīs also nice how the movie seems to take itīs sweet time to develop jokes about cliches and common movie tropes.

But there are a few problems. The scenes shared between Skipper and Private are good, but sometimes it gets a bit too much dramatic. The movie could have used a few less drama. Itīs not that the Penguins cannot have serious moments. Itīs just that they need to be really well executed and fit the style and tone of the movie, and most of the time it just doesnīt.

The supporting cast is just awful. The North Wind pack doesnt contribute that much besides being shoe-horned plot devices ? They are not funny, charismatic, original or even that important. I think Benedict Cumberbatch is a fantastic actor, but i donīt think his voice saves the character for me. I get that they are supposed to be some sort of contrast to the Penguins, and they are meant to put the whole "We are the elite" thing to the test, but there are so many better ways to do that without adding these characters that just arenīt that interesting.

I also wasnīt a fan of the villain. For me, he just isnīt that funny. I mean, his ridiculously petty plan is funny, his animations are amazing and his minions are funny, but the character himself just isnīt as funny as one could expect. Why did they even invent a new villain ? They had Dr.Blowhole, for crying out loud ! Dr.Blowhole was hilarious, interesting and the archnemesis Skipper could ask for. Why didnīt they bring him to the movie ?

So, as a whole, i found the movie enjoyable purely because, well, itīs the Penguins, and they are still really funny to watch. But i still think it could have been done a lot better.

Excellent movie, extremely underrated

I love this movie so much! I could go on and on about why this is one of my favorite Dreamworks movies, but I'll try to keep it concise:
  • The animation is absolutely AMAZING. From the near realistic water, to the big explosions that every action movie should have, to the huge crowds of people and penguins, this is some of the best CGI I have ever seen.
  • The humor and writing. Very well written story, with a great sense of humor. There is a little Toilet Humor, but it's rare, so if you aren't fond of it, you won't have to suffer throughout the movie.
  • The characters. It's hard for me to choose a favorite, because nearly every character is likable in some way. But if I had to choose, I would have to say Dave. I love everything about him. His chipper, Affably Evil attitude, his awesome Evil Laugh, and the fact that he is such a great example of Beware the Silly Ones. I can understand why some people might be upset that they created a new character instead of using Dr. Blowhole, but I think it was definitely worth it, and that Dave is among Dreamworks' best villains. I also love Corporal, because I identify with him a lot, being the guy who just wants to have fun. Also, I love how he treats the penguins.

However, there are 2 characters I don't like: First of all, Eva, because aside from being Kowalski's love interest, she doesn't really do anything important, and I think that they should have removed that plotline. I also hate the human characters (except for the newscaster in New York, he was hilarious), because of how cruel they are. I daresay that the only thing that makes Dave evil is the fact that he wanted revenge on the penguins. If only he had chosen to take revenge on the humans, the ones who really ruined his life, I would support him completely.

There is only one other thing I don't like: the Aesop. It's supposed to be "It's what's on the inside that counts." Yet the heroes are all "cute" animals, and the villains are all "ugly" animals. As much as I love Dave, I think they would have done a better job at getting the message across if they had used a Killer Rabbit instead of conforming to Animal Stereotypes.

Despite this, this is still a fun, enjoyable movie that is perfect for fans of animation, comedy, and spy movies alike!
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