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Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa [DVD]
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In this sequel to Madagascar, all of the loveable characters are back - Alex the lion, Marty the zebra, Melman the giraffe and Glori a the hippo, King Julien, Maurice and the penguins. They find themselves in the wildest place of all - the vast plains of Africa - w here our zoo-raised crew encounter species of their own kind for the very first time. While discovering their roots, they quickly fi nd the differences between the concrete jungle and the heart of Africa. Despite long-lost relatives, romantic rivals and scheming hu nters, Africa seems like a great place.
The sequel to the animated movie Madagascar gives more of everything audiences loved in the first movie: More of the penguins; more of Julian, king of the lemurs; more musical bits of classic rock; and many, many more lions, zebras, hippos, and giraffes. In the first film, a quartet of coddled zoo animals found themselves shipwrecked on the island of Madagascar in a misguided effort to return them to the wild. InMadagascar: Escape 2 Africa, a failed attempt to fly back to New York maroons Alex the lion (voiced by Ben Stiller), Marty the zebra (Chris Rock), Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith), and Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer) in an animal preserve on the African continent, accompanied by the four deranged penguins and the lunatic lemur king (deliriously voiced by Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat). By wild coincidence, this is where Alex was born--and where his father is still the alpha lion, and where his malevolent uncle seeks to take over (let's call this an homage to The Lion King). The other beasts have their own story arcs, but really it's all an excuse for daffy comic bits. Though the result is disposable, it's also entirely entertaining. The action sequences pop with dizzying spectacle; though some jokes are mainstream fodder, more often they're surprisingly quirky and engagingly oddball. This is the best kind of cotton candy filmmaking--it dissolves into nothing, but it's oh-so-sweet to the taste. --Bret FetzerSee all Product Description
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Behind the wise-cracks and inevitable mayhem there are some issues to think about, such as the importance of water for animals in the African desert, the rite of passage that a lion goes through within its pride, and I suppose shyness and insecurity and how to deal with these in a would-be relationship. You could say that in their different ways the four friends (the lion, the hippo, the zebra and the giraffe) go through differing challenges relating to their own identities now that, for the first time, they are back in their natural territory among hundreds of similar creatures.
From start to finish though the film's main purpose is to amuse and to entertain and it does that very successfully. Given its main target age group it can't really be criticised as I am sure children will love it. As far as mine are concerned, they have already asked me to get the DVD and I am confident that it will be repeat-viewed just as the original has been.
A very funny animated film suitable for all ages. My favourite character - and I don't seem to be alone here - is Skipper, the penguin 'boss'.
UPDATE 8th April 2009 : Just bought the DVD and watched it again with my children, I haven't changed my mind about it and nor have they. They were laughing throughout. I can now see the similarity with the Lion King better than I did before, but M2 is still more entertaining for children and of course a whole lot funnier.
But wrongly so, it would seem.
Where the first film never seemed to go anywhere or be particularly funny, this film removed itself from that with a definitive storyline and developed the characters much better than before. Even the irritating King Julian became an integral part of the fun.
It felt much more like the Dreamworks films I enjoy so much, with their individual style, offering something for adults with subtle humour and references and plenty for the kids with their wonderful animation and great comic timing and slapstick. Infact you might say that the later Dreamworks films are catering even more for the adults watching with their kids.
This Madagascar offers a direct lead on from the first, having the ever resourceful Penguines fix up an old crashed plane, to fly the stranded zoo animals back to New York. They end up crash landing in Africa where they are all originally from, so obviously they all hook up with their native species and find out what like is like in the wild. Alex the lion meets his dad (voiced by the late great Bernie Mac), and accidentally mistakes a fight for a dance contest and gets his family banished, oh, and has to wear a silly hat.
Meanwhile the Penguines hatch a plan to rebuilt the now twice crashed plane by hijacking tour jeeps, with hilarious consequences, the brave granny who beats up Alex the lion in the first film is back, and stranded after her tour jeep is hijacked by the Penguines creates a primitive colony of her own with the other tourists.
It's all very outrageous, and very good fun.Read more ›
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Still an annoying movie though. So many better animated films out there.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer