My trust in IMDb starts to crumble down in moments like these: I went to see how much lower the score for Madagascar 3 is compared to the first two animated movies and it turns out it is better, 7.2 against two scores of 6.7. Same thing happened in Rotten Tomatoes but luckily Metacritic was on my side and rated at least the first movie better than the third. So what happened? Was I just that tired or was I just waiting for something much more amazing – I guess both but still, it is not better than the first two, the numbers are wrong!
What became a weak point for me was the inability to tell a coherent story. Everything was mostly fine but a certain reality was lost when the animal control lady started sniffing around like a spider! I get that they wanted to create an interesting and dynamic villain but the first lady who kept kicking the lion with her handbag and portrayed the evil woman was a bit more realistic. I guess that’s the key of my dislike towards this very colorful animation – the reality aspect was missing. And I know that Madagascar is about animals who talk and can do tricks and stuff but still, some kind of logic should still be kept.
Pixar does it even with fish, and I mean, even DreamWorks Animation’s own Shrek and How to Train Your Dragon have a certain human like quality to them and they don’t need a tiger jumping through rings and keyholes ten times smaller than he is (once even together with a zebra)! Am I really getting too worked up over this logic thing while discussing an animation!? Yes, and I am well aware how silly it might sound but if you have seen Madagascar 3 and the whole colorful circus act they never actually show, you start to wonder if they lacked imagination and just made everything colorful, swirly and 3D to distract us from the fact that the actual story fell flat. Or is it the fact that they managed to make an animation that leaves all logic behind and leaves everything to the imagination of the viewer – well I feel like it is a negative rather than an interesting new angle.
Alex (Stiller), Marty (Rock), Melman (Shwimmer) and Gloria (Smith) have almost made it back to New York but are hunted by this spider-woman I was telling you about because she wants Alex’s head on her wall, literally. They stay in the circus, they buy the circus, they save the circus and they realize that they want to stay with the circus instead of going back to the Big Apple. That’s the whole story and while there are several new characters, including circus animals Gia, Stefano and Vitaly (Chastain, Short and Cranston), nothing can take away the effect the penguins and the lemurs – small roles that steal the show. Even the friendship between the main four is lost somewhere in the spectacle of the whole color-explosion and the final feeling after the movie was certainly an overwhelming disappointment.
To be fair, I’m the girl, or technically already a woman, who watches animated movies quite often and just the other day I revisited How to Train Your Dragon because I like it. So my review isn’t for the purpose to insert dislike towards animations, it is just an opinion regarding this specific film that seems to be liked by the general public more than it actually deserves. I would never watch Madagascar 3 again but if time passes I might forgive Alex, Marty, Melman and Gloria. When that happens the first two installments are very welcomed to make me laugh again. Still, as a conclusion, Madagascar 3 is an animation only for the kids, but as I’ve witnessed, the best animations (even the first two Madagascar ones) are also suitable for the kid-like grownups. Now, since I appreciated the first two and I still adore the penguins, the lemurs and lets face it, the monkeys!, I will rate this one a bit better than my first reaction.