Posted: 10/28/2009


Ice Age:Dawn of the Dinosaurs

by Elaine Hegwood Bowen

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Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is a heartfelt, hilarious animated story starring Ellie the elephant (voiced by Queen Latifah) and Manny the elephant (voiced by Ray Romano) as a couple anticipating the birth of their first child.

Sid plays the nasty, stinky sloth who might be just a bit jealous that his good friend will become a dad and not have much time to hang out with him anymore.

As the big day approaches and Manny is hyped about a playground that he has built for his newborn elephant, Sid runs across three eggs that just happen to belong to a dinosaur who lives underground from where Sid, Ellie, Manny and the rest of the herd (which is comprised of a gazelle, aardvark, beaver, mole hog and other animals) reside.

This is the sequel to Ice Age: The Meltdown and things have changed a bit. However, Scrat is still hunkering for a bit of love from Scratte, while they both fight over an acorn. Diego the lion is trying to flaunt his power and authority and gets more than chance to do so, once the young dinosaurs’ mother comes to hunt Sid down.

They all end up in the strange underworld and are befriended by a one-eyed weasel named Buck, who has an answer for everything and who’ll eventually help Manny, Ellie and the gang rescue Sid before he’s eaten for dinner.

I didn’t see the first Ice Age, but this movie was so good, I have to admit that I was a bit ashamed that I didn’t have a house full of youngsters over to enjoy it as much as I did.
Ellie finally gives birth to a beautiful little girl, with the proud Manny barely making it back to witness the occasion. Diego saves the day, while coaching Ellie along. In the end the dinosaur mom, whom Sid calls Momzilla doesn’t devour Sid but allows him to have a good farewell with the three young charges that he briefly was able to believe were his own.

And just when things seem to calm down, Rudy (the colossal fossil) provides much entertainment for Buck, while the herd go back to their home above the underworld and get down to the business of raising young “Peaches the elephant,” while Sid, Scrat, Scratte and the rest of the animated, assorted bunch go back to what makes them the happiest—being a family of one, united front, even though they are from different backgrounds and species.
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is available on DVD from 20th Century Fox and features the voices of Denis Leary, John, Allegra and Lucas Leguizamo, among others.

Elaine Hegwood Bowen is an editor, writer and film critic in Chicago.

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