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Starring (the voices of): Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Queen Latifah, Simon Pegg, Seann William Scott

Director(s): Carlos Saldanha, Mike Thurmeier

Writer(s): Michael Berg, Peter Ackelman

Cinematography: Mike Knapp

Original Score: John Powell

Running Time: 94 Mins.

With Dreamworks releasing Monsters vs. Aliens at Easter and Pixar’s Up not opening on this side of the Atlantic until October it is left to that third leg in the CGI animation stakes to plug the gap in the summer market, 20th Century Fox who come at us with the continuation of their ever lazy Ice Age franchise, and get this kids, it’s in 3D!

As you can probably tell my anticipation for Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs was at an all time low given that the previous entries were both lazy and showed a total lack of heart, ingenuity or any attempt at something fresh, churned out by Fox as seems to be the case with the studio’s general output lately, simply to make money, at whatever cost. This fact serves to highlight how good Pixar films really are, in fact Dreamworks weaker efforts also best Ice Age 1, 2 and now 3 by quite some way. The best thing I could say about this entry is that it is not the worst in the series, that honour still belongs to number 2.

But before getting too bogged down in the negatives I must first at least acknowledge that there are very meagre vaguely enjoyable morsels to be sought, coming courtesy of Simon Pegg and the ever reliable John Leguizamo, both standing head and shoulders above anyone else’s vocal input sounding like they are at least having fun and raising the odd titter. But with Queen Latifah being the low point at her most annoying, and Ray Romano and Denis Leary sounding as bored as the audience, regardless of the emotion their character’s are meant to be feeling.

Character developement could be overlooked though were the film actually remotely engaging or at the least amusing, lest it is neither aside from Pegg and Leguizamo’s best efforts with the weak script, yes I am fully aware I don’t fall into the demographic audience for Ice Age but with children accustomed to much better fare from Dreamworks and even Sony (Pixar is undoubtedly too high for them to try and reach with standards as low as they are currently!) there is no excuse for something this lazy.

So while kids are poorly catered for with only the cutesy addition of dinosaurs and a multitude of baby animals the adults, or anyone above the age of 8 will struggle to find anything remotely sophisticated with only one or two more “sophisticated” jokes feeling totally out of place in the context of the rest of the feeble attempts at jokes.

The most frustrating thing has to be the attempt at using 3D to try and sell the film furthermore, it is by far the laziest use of what seems to have become a gimmick rather than a story telling tool adding nothing to the visuals or story, with the saddest factor of the whole debacle being that due to a lack of competition to make money at the box office Ice Age 4 is as inevitable as death and taxes!

VERDICT

Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is lazy, lazy, lazy with only the additon of Simon Pegg as a form of solace, and don’t let the 3D gimmick fool you, for that is all it is, a gimmick.

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