The Ice Age is coming to an end, and the animals are delighting in their new world: a melting paradise of water parks, geysers and tar pits.
I liked Ice Age, the first movie, very much. That’s why I was a bit worried when I watched Ice Age: The Meltdown‘s trailer for the first time. There was Scratch, the squirrel, searching again for the unattainable seed, there were the same ol’ chaps from the first movie escaping again from an imminent danger… I feared that the upcoming movie would just aim to make cash by using and abusing all the things that made the original famous. Now I that I finally saw the movie, I’m happy to say I was wrong…
… Well, to some point I was right: there’s more of all those things that made the original famous. But, and that’s a big but, there’s a lot of good taste in this movie; so much so that, although there’s little new material, everything looks fresh. Scratch’s appearances are dosified so that they don’t bore, and everytime the squirrel is on screen it shows some new tricks which make the audience burst out in laughter. The plot is, so to say, the same as in the first movie (by the way, this Ice Age was kinda short), but the subplots focus in developing the main characters’ personalities and fears so that the story never loses interest. To make things better, all the new characters that have been added are relevant and interesting to the plot and by themselves: I love those awesome possums! The vultures and minisloths bring up two of the most memorable moments in the whole film, two songs which recall the best of Disney’s musicals, and Ellie, the mammoth with personality disorders, adding very nicely to the pack. From a technical point of view the film is fantastic without being pretentious, from the character’s animations to the brilliant score by John Powell (which improves as the film moves on).
All in all this is a film you should see, regardless of whether or not you like animation movies or if you haven’t seen the first one. It stands as much more than just a sequel, and it is an exercise in style, showing how to tastefully “recycle” material to the limit without insulting the audience’s intelligence.