Starring: Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary
Director: Chris Wedge, Carlos Saldanha
Running Time: 81 mins
Ice Age is an American film about a prehistoric sloth, mammoth and sabre tooth tiger who form an unlikely trio in returning a lost human child to its tribe, amid the height of the ice age.
You can’t help but love Ice Age. A real pioneer of modern computer animation that deserves to stand alongside the likes of Shrek, Toy Story and more, this short and wonderfully sweet prehistoric adventure is an utter joy from start to finish. Not only a beautiful film to look at, Ice Age is filled with laughs, zany characters, great voice performances and some amazing tear-jerking moments that you won’t forget in a hurry.
Running for just over 80 minutes, Ice Age may be brief, but its impact is in no way small. First things first, the film is an absolute delight for viewers of all ages. The cuddly and imaginatively-presented prehistoric animals make great heroes for young kids watching along, while the charismatic voice performances and witty screenplay means there are more than enough laughs for adults too.
The animation style too is just irresistibly lovable. Though by the standards of 20 years later Ice Age may look a little basic, there’s real beauty in that simplicity, with a fresh, uncluttered portrayal of a mystical frozen Earth that’s open to all the possibilities in the world, as we follow our trio of heroes traversing all manner of landscapes and adventures in the process.
And much like other classics of modern animation, the characters in Ice Age make it the memorable adventure that it is. With fantastic voice acting from Ray Romano, John Leguizamo and Denis Leary and Manny, Sid and Diego – a motley crew of animals stuck together – you form such a strong bond with the film’s heroes over the course of its short runtime, and that makes their journey to return a lost infant all the more epic.
Not only is Ice Age a film that feels epic, though, because it’s chock-full of fantastic emotional depth. Amid the harsh world of a frozen landscape that rips families apart, the film brilliantly unfolds with enthralling drama and heartfelt depth that will easily have you in tears come the heart-wrenching finale. There are plenty of laughs along the way – not to mention Scrat’s hilarious laughs along the way – but Ice Age really hits the heights with its moving character depth and soaring, epic storytelling. So, that’s why I’m giving Ice Age an 8.1 overall.