Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Ice Age 1 2 and 3

And now for some things very different. I cannot remember if I have seen one of the Ice Age movies from start to finish in one sitting, but since they had been shown on television I had seen the most if not all the three films todate at various sittings. The overall theme is that of a buddie movie of very different and unlikely characters. Each film covers the adventures of Scrat a sabre-toothed squirrel and his struggle to find and keep prized acorns. In the first film Scat has various adventures trying to find somewhere to bury and hide an acorn, including an incident which starts an avalanche which he tries to flee from, is struck by lightening so that the acord becomes a kernel of pop corn. He is frozen into an ice cube which on reaching a tropical island thaws but the acorn is washed out to sea. He then thinks coconut is a giant acorn which he tries to bury causing a volcanic eruption.

In the third film of the series Scrat has a romantic liaison with a female called Scattie and which causes various conflicts of interest giving up opportunities to have an acorn rather than lose his beloved. However as the film ends the two fight for possession and in the final scene he escapes to the surface leaving Scattie trapped underground only to then lose the acorn to her.

The main characters are all pre historic creatures with Manfred, a wholly Mammoth, and he appears in all three films, believing he is the last creature of his size in existence until he meets Elle, a female Mammoth voiced by Queen Laifah in the second film Ice Age: the Melt Down. When an infant she was separated from her parents and the herd and comes across two opossums named Crash and Eddie, along with their mother. She forgets her origins and thinks she is also an opossum which includes sleeping upside down by their tails. During the meltdown they come across the herd which Elle having adjusted to being a Mammoth needs to rejoin while Manfred remain loyal to the rest of the gang, until reminded as what is important by the others and goes off to join Elle, but they both return deciding that they do not want to eave the gang. In the third Ice Age: Age of the Dinosaurs, Elle is left behind at one point in a precarious position and when they return they find that she has given birth to their daughter who is called Peaches!

It is only in the second film that we meet Crash and Eddie twin opossums whose mother saved Elle and the three are raised as siblings which raises conflicts of loyalty when Elle is found by Manfred and two pair off. They are competitive and playful rascals who have a love hate relationship with Sid, a giant ground sloth shown in all three films as one of the main characters. He is clumsy, and fast-talking and longs to be loved. He also develops the ability to create fire which proves useful

Diego is a sabre Toothed tiger who is the joint leader of the gang who makes sarcastic comments without being malicious and by the third film begins to worry that he is losing his predatory abilities and considered staying in the underground world of the dinosaurs. There are other characters who appear in one of the films or who have roles outside the group.

In the first Ice age a human child is found with his mother who dies pleading with Manny to save her child. Diego’s role is duplicitous at first leading into an ambush but later helps them to overcome and kill the leader of the sabre toothed tigers and they are then able go off in search of a warmer environment.

In the second film the plot is described in the title as the gang have to escape the melting down of the ice. The new character is a Fast Tony a con artist spiv with the voice of Jay Leno.
In their efforts to escape the flood they are required to move across water and Diego refuses to admit his fear until challenged that if fear is for prey the he is the prey of water and overcomes his fear.

Sid is captured by a large tribe of mini-sloths who treat him like a God repeating every word he says and every movement. Sid finds this wonderful given his experiences with the gang to date but then learns that he is to be sacrificed to a volcano in an effort to stop the world being flooded by the meting ice. The others do not believe him until they are confronted by the tribe who want Sid to be their leader because they believe he has saved them from the flood. It is at this point Diego tells Sid how important he is to the group and persuades him to stay with them. There is a joyous moment at the end of the second film as Scat falls into a fissure in the giant wall of ice that has formed a dam and finds himself in a heaven full of acorns. He is about to start enjoying this new existence when he is pulled away having been found near death by Sid who has resuscitated him.

In the third film, with another planned for next year, Sid is taken by a female Tyrannosaurs after taking her eggs and enters a subterranean tropical lost world. Sid finds and looks after the three eggs which hatch and becomes part of the family.

The show stealer is a weasel, “missing his right eye and wears a leaf as an impromptu eyepatch, and seems slightly insane (he claims that he woke up one day, married to an ugly pineapple, but he still loved it, and Manny calls him a "deranged hermit"). According to the official website, Buck is one-eyed and relentless in his hunting for dinosaurs. Buck's archenemy is a large albino Baryonyx he calls Rudy, who gouged out Buck's eye and whose tooth he later sharpened into a knife that he carries with him. In fact, Buck is the only inhabitant of the dinosaurs' world who does not fear Rudy in the slightest, though he possesses a deep respect for him. Due to living underground for so long, he has an extensive knowledge of the dangers of the dinosaur world.

After Rudy's potential death, Buck, having lost his purpose in life, decides to join the herd and live on the surface. Upon hearing a distant familiar roar that tells him that Rudy survived their battle, he chooses to stay and causes a cave-in that seals off the path between the surface and the underground jungle, trapping him inside and everyone else on the surface. He and Rudy proceed to continue their battle

While the films are aimed at young children with their families, as with all such films there are sad moments and scenes which will disturb some however unintentional.

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