Madagascar (2005) voices Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sacha Baron Cohen, Cedric the Entertainer directed by Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath Movie Review

Madagascar (2005)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Madagascar (2005) voices Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith

Escape from Zoo York

I've said it before but I will say it again, I am not a huge fan of modern animations, I enjoyed them at the start when the CGI animations were something new but I quickly grew tired as one after another was churned out with sequels coming a plenty. Some of these modern animations have worked better than others and when it comes to "Madagascar" it sadly isn't one of them. Part of the trouble is that unlike other modern animations "Madagascar" is very much a children's movie rather than one for the entire family with the jokes working at a low level rather than throwing in enough clever gags to amuse adults as well. But the actual quality of the animation is not as good, almost simplistic with a cartoon feel lacking the detail which has made other animations glorious exhibitions of talent.

Having hit double figures Marty the Zebra (Chris Rock) is feeling down as nothing changes at the zoo despite leading the life of luxury, being fed the best food by the keepers. Whilst his friends Alex the Lion (Ben Stiller), Melman the Giraffe (David Schwimmer) and Gloria the Hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith) love performing to the visitors and their pampered life Marty decides he needs more and decides he is going to the follow the example of the penguins and escape. When Marty goes through with it Alex, Melman and Gloria follow him and after being captured and sent to an African zoo end up washed up in Madagascar and having to fend for themselves in the wild, something which none of them have any clue how to do.

Madagascar (2005) voices Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith

So as I said "Madagascar" rather than catering for both children and adults is very much a movie whose target audience is young children. That means that there is very little in the form of innuendo and jokes going on which allow adults to be amused as much as their children. It doesn't mean there is anything wrong story wise with the movie as I am sure this simple story of zoo animals unprepared to survive in the wild is amusing for children but it is dull for adults.

But not only does it feel like half the jokes are missing but so is the animation quality. It was probably intentional to make it look more cartoon like but sadly not only does it mean the attention to details is missing the graphics look blocky. Again for young children it probably won't be an issue but it is far too simplistic for adults.

The one thing which "Madagascar" has going for it is the various recognizable actors who have voiced the characters. I wouldn't say that these are the best characters but the likes of David Schwimmer as the hypochondriac Melman and Chris Rock as Marty do bring some life to the movie.

What this all boils down to is that "Madagascar" is very much an animation for children rather than the whole family with its simplistic graphics and lack of innuendo making it a little dull for grown ups.