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Laramie Movie Scope:
The Croods

Cavemen adapt to changing world

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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April 6, 2013 -- This animated 3D family film is filled with brilliant colors, strange animals, fantastic landscapes, along with some fairly interesting characters and a pretty good story, too.

The story revolves around a caveman, Grug, and his family. Living in prehistoric times, life is so perilous that Grug and his family spend most of their time hiding in a cave, coming out only briefly to forage for food. Grug preaches caution and fear of everything new, and he virtually forbids curiosity. His rebelious daughter, Eep, chafes under these restrictions and one night she escapes the cave.

Eep sees a strange light at night and sneaks outside the cave to follow it. She finds a strange young man, Guy, who has discovered how to make and control fire. The light she saw from afar was a torch. Guy is just the opposite of Grug. He is smart, curious and adventurous. He is also somewhat of an inventor, having invented shoes, among other things. He tells Eep that the world she knows is about to end, and if she wants to survive she will have to make a long journey towards the setting sun.

Sure enough, Guy's prediction comes true. An earthquake destroys the cave that Grug and his family have been living in. Grug and the others are persuaded by Guy to follow him to distant mountains where he says they can find caves to live in. Grug doesn't like the fact that his daughter is attracted to Guy. He likes it even less that everyone has started to ignore him and follow Guy, relying on his intelligence, rather than Grug's strength and experience.

Grug is not used to living out in the open without the protection of a cave. Eventually he begins to see the value of Guy and his ability to use his brain to adapt to changing conditions. It is a big world out there, filled with a lot of dangerous animals. Wits are the only thing that will save these cavemen from destruction.

As they travel around, they pick up some pet animals, including dog-like and cat-like creatures. Guy has a kind of monkey who helps him. One of the most dangerous things they face is a flock of meat-eating birds. They also face earthquakes and rivers of molten lava as they continue on their journey. If you are looking for prehistoric science, you won't find any in this film. You have strange animals like lions that are shaped all wrong, things that look like flying turtles, and geologic events that billions of years out of time with the corresponding animal life. It's crazy, but it looks great.

Actors doing the voices in the movie include Nicolas Cage (Grug), Emma Stone (Eep), Ryan Reynolds (Guy), Catherine Keener (Ugga, Grug's wife) and Cloris Leachman (Granny). This is a very nice little family film with excellent visuals and interesting characters. It rates a C+.

Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in digital formats, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 2013 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)