Not necessarily. I canít really tell whatís special about this flick that would warrant such an international phenomenon. Not only is it pretty much the same as the first ICE AGE movie, but itís generic enough that it feels distractingly similar to a lot of animated movies weíve been subjected to over the years. (Three movies in and theyíre still learning the same lessons about being a family!) All the characterizations, plot points and even the jokes are all pretty standard and unoriginal. The jokes and gags are more ďcutesyĒ and suited for young minds, which is fine but I wouldnít expect adults to get a whole lot of entertainment out of it.
The film moves at a fast pace, which makes it easy to digest at least. Thereís also some nice guest voice work from the likes of Simon Pegg, Bill Hader, Kristen Wiig and Jane Lynch that will perk your ears up for a few seconds, even though in most cases theyíre talents are wasted. And I do enjoy the character of Scrat, whose corny romance is the one dependably enjoyable recurring segment of the movie, reminiscent of the sorely missed Looney Tunes-style shorts.
ICE AGE 3 isnít a horrible movie; it just doesnít seem to be aspiring to be actually good. I made the mistake of rewatching UP the night before this movie and it only made its flaws more evident.
Filmmaker Commentary: Director Carlos Saldanha and other various crew members discuss the making of the film in detail, with a few lighthearted anecdotes, but nothing that makes it really worth listening for the average viewer.
ICE AGE Storybook Maker: This activity feature for kids lets you use screenshots to create your own ICE AGE book, complete with your own story. Itís commendable theyíre trying to put something more educational on a DVD, but I just donít see a young kid (the target audience for this sort of thing) sitting down and actually making a storybook using a remote control.
Evolution Expedition: Learn about some of the actual animals that are featured in the movie, including a trip to the La Brea Tar Pits. Iím not a kid, but I still thought some of this was cool.
Buck: From Easel to Weasel and Falling for Scratte: Two short pieces on the creation of the filmís two newest characters, one of which (Buck) is voiced by the great Simon Pegg.
Unearthing the Lost World: A look at the dino-filled underground oasis and what the filmmakers went through to come up with it.
Deleted Scenes: Thereís only two presented in storyboard format and neither were that interesting. Skip it.
Fox Movie Channel presents Making a Scene: These two featurettes are your standard behind the scenes pieces with talking heads and a quick tour through production from start to finish. Kind of bland, but kids might enjoy an intro in to the world of animated filmmaking.
Fox Movie Channel presents In Character: Three interviews with John Leguizamo, Ray Romano and Queen Latifah. (Yes, you read that right, no Simon Pegg!) All three seem ecstatic about their easy paychecks, I mean franchise.
Scrat Pack: This section is made up of different segments, including two shorts featuring Scrat, all of which are pretty entertaining. There are also a featurettes with the character, including one that shows you how to draw him. Kids will love it.
ďWalk the DinosaurĒ Music Video: Queen Latifah went from rapper to this. Wow.
There are also some Trailers and BD-Live material.
Extra Tidbit: Roger Ebert gave this 3 and a half stars. Whatís going on with that dude lately?