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Four Manhattan zoo animals escape to the wild island of Madagascar.

What I Thought

First of all, I apologize this review of a really good and funny movie took so long to get out. But I have an excuse.

I went to see this film a few weeks ago (about 2 weeks after it got released). As we were watching the previews, the fire alarm in the movie theater went off and all of us had to scramble to get out of there.

Of course, since then I just had to see Mr. and Mrs. Smith and that masterpiece of modern cinema, the third Star Wars movie, so this one got bumped out further. That was sarcasm back there for those of you who didn't read my Star Wars review.

Then, of course, when I finally get to the theater to see this movie (again), the theater people make us wait in line until 5 minutes before show time because the theater is being cleaned. Can we be getting punk'd when we walk into the theater and it's a filthy mess? No, just plain and dull reality. Let's just say the manager and I had words.

This all, of course, has nothing to do with the movie itself, but just thought I'd share with you all some of the sacrifices I must go through for you, my dear reader. And I have that in the singular because, really, is there more than just one person who reads this anyway?

Anyway, on to the movie.

It's hilariously funny.

You want more than that? *sigh* Well then.

This is a computer generated tale of four animals who were raised in the Manhattan zoo, right next to St. Patrick's. And if you think that talking animals is movie magic, try seeing where the zoo would actually fit in the real Manhattan, where St. Patrick's is surrounded by skyscrapers.

Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, and Jada Pinkett Smith provide the voices of the four animals (lion, zebra, giraffe, and hippo, respectively). They're very well cast and bring a fun spring to the movie. Special kudos go to the great Sacha Baron Cohen as the King of the Lemurs (if you don't know who Cohen is, you're missing HBO's Da Ali G show, an amazing biting comedy show... where else will you have a ghetto Ali G from London's West End interviewing a hip-hop-rhyming Newt Gingrich?).

The storyline moves along very well, and there are plenty of jokes for the older crowd. Think maybe a campier (but yet more young'un accessible) version of Shrek.

If this movie is still in your theaters, I highly recommend it. I'm sorry to see it's been eclipsed by, shall we say, other movies that aren't nearly well written, directed or acted *cough* *cough* Star *cough* Wars *cough*. It's already on my "must buy on DVD" list.


All photos and text copyright Ryszard Kilarski, unless otherwise noted. Clip art, drawings, paintings are either free domain or copyrighted by the artists.