A new adventure awaits our old Ice Age friends in the latest installment in this series: Continental Drift. Manny the woolly mammoth (Ray Romano); Sid the sloth (John Leguizamo); and Diego the saber-toothed tiger (Denis Leary) find themselves separated from their families and loved ones when icebergs begin breaking apart as Pangaea itself separates into continents (thanks to Scrat). But to get back to their families they must learn to sail the seas and avoid capture by some dangerous pirates.
The pirates are led by the "primate-pirate pioneer" Captain Gutt (Peter Dinklage). He and his rag-tag crew wreak havoc on our heroes. After an initial defeat, the sultry saber-toothed pirate feline Shira (Jennifer Lopez) joins the gang and flirts around with Diego, but she can’t be up to any good. Meanwhile, Manny's wife Ellie (Queen Latifah) is busy leading everyone to a land bridge that could reunite them with their families while also dealing with her daughter's high school love triangle drama.
Continental Drift has a lot of fun with the series and its established characters. And the new characters they add provide plenty of amusing fodder for their adventures. It's also fun to guess which actor is providing whose voice, since the film is riddled with a wide-range of actors (like Wanda Sykes, Keke Palmer, Simon Pegg, Patrick Stewart, Sean William Scott, and even Nicki Minaj).
Just don't expect anything more than crisply animated fluff. It's an entertaining children's film and family adventure that even incorporates some great musical numbers. But unless you want to know what trouble Scrat is causing (like destroying an Ancient Greek-like squirrel civilazation), then this film isn't for you.
In the "Party with a Pirate!" viewing mode, Squint (Aziz Ansari) gives a comedic commentary of the film while incorporating interactive elements (like coloring pictures of the film). "Through a Pirate's Spyglass" involves actor interviews as they explain their approach in making this film. "Granny and the Stink of the Sloths" examines Sid's much talked about family. "Whale of a Tale" goes into the science and historical accuracy (or lack thereof) of the film's story. Two Scrat-related featurettes revel in the character: "Scrat Got Your Tongue" and "The Scratist" (an Artist-inspired look at Scrat's adventures). Plus there are deleted scenes, music videos, and a sing-along version of Captain Gutt's song.
"Ice Age: Continental Drift" is on sale December 11, 2012 and is rated PG. Animation. Directed by Michael Thurmeier, Steve Martino. Written by Michael Berg, Jason Fuchs. Starring Denis Leary, Jennifer Lopez, John Leguizamo, Queen Latifah, Ray Romano.