Friday, February 14, 2014

Movie Review #7: The Croods

The thing about the movies I plan to watch on my movie nights is that they're mostly movies that have been recommended to me by one person or another. To some degree, I'm already interested going into them. I go in expecting to like it. This has kind of colored my movie reviews up to now: most of my movie reviews are very positive because I aim to watch movies that I expect to give a positive review.

That was not the case with The Croods. I watched this movie on a Netflix whim, so be prepared for anything.


Very pretty, but mostly empty.

To clarify, the visuals and the animation are very pretty. The movie is fun to watch. However, the story is predictable, the moral is questionable, and it lacks any sort of subtlety.

That said, if Dreamworks movies are your thing, don't let me stop you from seeing this movie. However, don't go in expecting to walk away with inspired and filled with new ideas that will change your life for the better.


The Croods are a family of cavemen who have managed to survive by spending as little time outside of their cave as possible, hiding from the environment and predators. However, the daughter of the family, Eep, is tired of the cave, tired of her family, and tired of rules.

The family's daily routine is turned upside down, though, as tectonic forces force the family to leave their cave and seek safety with the help of an unwilling stranger.


If you've ever watched a sitcom, then you're already intimately familiar with every character in this movie, but with the confusing aspect of sometimes (not always) acting like wild animals, even though for the most part they act very modern.

The moral of the story seems to be that we should always be open to change and invention, and it conveys this concept with all the grace of a brick through your window. In fact, one of the things in the movie is that the father would gather the family and tell a story that's only a thinly veiled way to show that some recent transgression if a good way to get people killed. The moral of the movie is about as subtle as the stories the father tells.

Obviously, it turns out that Eep had it right all along, the family needed to get out and live more, the father needed to learn to think for himself, and at some point during the story the father and the new guy come to respect each other. Nothing new here.

The most redeeming part of the movie is the visuals: the movie is colorful, as are the various chimera creatures that inhabit this strange, "prehistoric" land that the Croods inhabit. The animals, the plants, even the characters actually look good.


The Croods is not a bad movie. It's simply depressingly mediocre, bringing nothing new to cinema, with nothing to teach that we didn't know already. It's probably a decent movie for kinds, since they haven't necessarily seen enough enough movies to know this story structure through and through. However, there's no real reason to sit through this movie otherwise.

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