Starring: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett Smith
Director: Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath
Running Time: 87 mins
Madagascar is an American film about a four animals living in the Central Park Zoo who are unexpectedly taken from their accustomed habitat and thrust into the wild, on the island of Madagascar.
This has to be right up there with Shrek as one of the funniest animated films of the modern era. Sure, it may not have the storytelling ability of the Pixar movies, but Madagascar is all about the laughs, and it delivers on that promise perfectly from beginning to end, thanks to a fun screenplay, cartoonish animation and some brilliant voice acting.
Madagascar is a short, snappy and very witty movie, and that’s what makes it so much fun to watch. The most enjoyable thing about it by far is the comedy, with a heap of slapstick, pop culture references and ‘for the adults’ jokes thrown in to keep you laughing non-stop throughout. There may be one small period towards the end where the film goes a little too far with its story focus, meaning the comedy suffers slightly, but apart from that, it’s laughs galore from beginning to end here.
The screenplay is full of great jokes, and what it also does really well is give you a brilliant variety of wacky characters. All of the animals have got their own hilarious personalities, and, with some of the finest comedy actors voicing them, it’s pretty much impossible not to love everything that comes out of their mouths.
It’s not necessarily a character-driven movie, but the fact that you do have a fantastically funny lead quartet accompanied by some of the zaniest secondary characters ever makes it hugely enjoyable to watch alongside the written jokes.
Another positive of this film is the animation. Whilst the backgrounds look pretty good, they don’t compare to the brilliant animation of the animals. They all look exactly like a cartoon, and the way that they’re anthropomorphised makes them even more fun to watch. This movie never takes itself too seriously, and because of that, you’re able to have a great time sitting back and watching it like a simple, but hilarious Saturday morning cartoon.
The story may be pretty thin, and there is that one lull period where the film doesn’t quite manage to deliver, but apart from that, this is a hugely enjoyable watch. Kids and adults will definitely be laughing right the way through, and with some great animation and brilliant voice performances, there’s a lot to love about this, so that’s why Madagascar gets an 8.2 from me.