Roll out the red carpet for Skipper, Kowalski, Rico
and Private as they waddle to the world premiere of their
first feature-length DVD! You may think they're just a cute
pack of penguins but these flightless birds are actually an
elite strike force with unmatched commando skills. And if
they want to maintain order in the zoo, they'll have to outwit
resident party animal King Julien! Roger that, Boys!
not uncommon for supporting characters to outshine the main
ones in terms of popularity. Take for example the recent CG
animation, "Despicable Me" where the minions and
the three orphan girls left a more lasting impression than
the main protagonist, Gru. And in the popular DreamWorks’
animation "Madagascar", the four cheeky penguins
are so in demand that they now have their own spin-off television
features on Nickelodeon.
Penguins of Madagascar" is a collection of the first
ten episodes shown on the network channel and each episode
runs approximately at a swift 11 minutes. The four penguins
namely the leader of the group, Skipper, Kowlaski the group
strategist, Rico the weaponry expert and Private the rookie
gets to different mischief at their home in the Central Park
Zoo together with their fellow friends, King Julien, Maurice
and Mort. Most of the recognizable supporting characters from
the movies do appeared in the TV series with the exception
of the main four leads of course. There are even new recurring
characters introduced like Marlene, a fiercely independent
otter, a harmless alligator Roger and Max the stray cat.
episodes supposedly took place after the second movie, "Madagascar:
Escape 2 Africa" though it is never clearly stated or
explained. The writings are neither sharp nor witty though
there are hints of potentially cute humour. One of the strengths
of the series is the heavy reliance on the crazy antics devised
by the penguins. For example, one episode sees the penguins
traveling to the lunar moon on a makeshift shuttle and on
another episode helping their alligator friend fighting against
a group of sewer rats. And they even escaped from the zoo
in broad daylight just to have snow-cones. Perhaps King Julien
is the second funniest character in the show given his often
exaggerated self-indulgent ways.
the standard of the CG is a triumph. Though done by vendors
in Taiwan and India, the series retained the colourful setup
and palette seen in the movies. In fact, kids and adults alike
will find the visual pretty appealing and it will be unfair
to compare this to the almost perfect rendering and highly
detailed in other words bigger budgeted movie versions.
the sub-par stories, the enthusiastic younger audience will
lap up the energetic action sequences courtesy of the four
penguins. Personally, Nickelodeon’s immensely well-received
Spongebob Squarepants is a far more perfect blend of gags
and story-telling. Parents will not necessary be entertained
by the uneven balance of kiddy and adult humour but console
yourselves that there are far worse animations out there in
the market and fortunately, "The Penguins of Madagascar"
isn’t one of them.
SPECIAL FEATURES :
special features include Trailers for DreamWorks animations
and Nickelodeon’s Spongebob Squarepants. DreamWorks
Animation Video Jukebox is a collection of MTVs featuring
past DreamWorks Animation feaures of course.
features Dolby Digital 5.1, dialogue is clear and occasionally
makes good use of the surround for action scenes. Visual transfer
is almost flawless though it shows clearly the poor rendering
of characters at times.
MOVIE RATING :
by Linus Tee
on 16 August 2010