It seems like today whenever people watch a movie they are looking for some kind of deeper meaning. What does this film say about morality? How does this movie make me re-evaluate who I am as a person? Although it is great when movies provide insightful ideas about the human condition, there is a lot to be said for movies that are just downright fun. It may not be a movie that is very thought provoking, but Madagascar 3 is the most fun I’ve had watching a movie in a long time.
After leaving Africa and going to Monte-Carlo, the gang of four unlikely animals and their friends join a traveling circus in an attempt to return to New York and escape the evil animal control officer, Chantal Dubois. The usual all-star cast is back, featuring Ben Stiller and the always-funny Chris Rock, along with some new additions including Bryan Cranston and Martin Short, who notably voices the funniest recent addition to the animal crew. With a cast like this, as well as some really top-notch comedic writing, Madagascar 3 doesn’t disappoint.
After having mixed feelings about the first two Madagascar films, I expected more of the same from the third installment, but as soon as this movie started, I knew I was in for a treat. While most series seem to tire out by the third installment, Madagascar 3 just might be the best film of the bunch. While the films have always been a little nonsensical, Madagascar 3 throws caution to the wind, ridiculously ignoring any kind of seriousness or even basic physics, while comically poking fun at that fact all along the way.
If there is one complaint I have about this movie, it’s that the laughs trail off a little bit in the third act. While serious is not a word I would use to describe the later parts of the film, it certainly shifts the focus to developing the plot. Even though the ending was a little sappy and predictable, it was nice to see that the characters actually showed a bit of emotional growth by the end, and ultimately that’s all you can really ask for in a family film like this.
While it never really reaches the prowess of something like Toy Story, and even though this isn’t likely to become a classic animated film, it’s probably the best movie going experience I have had in a while. No matter how old you are, I would recommend this movie; even though there’s a pretty good chance you’ll feel ridiculous laughing out loud at a movie that was made for six year olds who think lions are cool.
Rating: 4 out of 5