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Prince of Egypt is my favorite by far. I've liked some of their others but none have stuck with me quite like that one. That one a had a wonderful story, beautiful animation, and music crafted by the Hanz of God himself, Hanz Zimmer. I'd post the Plagues but someone already beat me to it; I have that track on repeat quite often and it has driven most of my family and friends crazy.

 

It's just a wonderful movie. I like how they toned down God's role in the plot some to focus on the conflict between Moses and Ramses. They also made Moses more human and believable as a character; in the Bible he doesn't give two shits about what happens to Egypt. In the movie he's both Hebrew and Egyptian, and feels for the pain of both people. Instead of the Pharaoh dying like in the Bible, he's just left with having lost everything screaming for Moses to come back... it's a powerful moment.

 

But have this track instead:

 

 

The express goal of this song, with its imagery, was to make the audience immediately side with the plight of the Hebrews. I think they succeeded wonderfully. Was it old men being whipped because they couldn't take the labor? The mass slaughter of innocent babies? The powerful, saddening lyrics? The tearjerking moment of Jochebed having to send her son down a crocodile-infested river in the slim hope he will survive the massacre?

Edited by Ogilvie Maurice

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Prince of Egypt is AMAZING and so under appreciated. Just listen to this!

 

 

The music and songs are unbelieveably good, the animation is beautiful and for an adaption of a Biblical story it truly respects it and can get really dark at times. Another underrated 2D film by Dreamworks is The Road to El Dorado, which is very funny and fun to watch.

 

Other Dreamworks films I like are Shrek 2, HTTYD and Kung Fu Panda. I can't wait for the sequel to HTTYD, it should be really good!

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Prince of Egypt was beyond epic. But does anybody find it hilarious that it was actually banned in Egypt during its theatrical run?

 

Not too hilarious; it's perfectly reasonable.

 

For nationalist purposes, Ramses II is a very popular pharaoh, commonly considered one of, if not, Egypt's best.

 

In addition, the Koran forbids depiction of religious figures. They showed Moses, so that's a nono.

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So, a nice little bump's been in order for awhile, mainly because I've seen Rise of the Guardians about five or six times now and feel compelled to give some thoughts on it. Seeing The Croods and the recent status fad on top of it just put me in the mood for a revival. So without further ado:
 

rise-of-the-guardians-50457b2fcc549.png

 
The Guardians are essentially The Avengers of Childhood: North, Bunnymund, Sandy, and Tooth fulfill their duties in the name of protecting innocence and the holidays. Odd one out is Jack Frost, a nymph with a mysterious past who instead uses his powers for creating snow days, reduced to invisibility as modern children merely know of him as a turn of phrase. When the Man in the Moon calls on him to become a Guardian in the wake of the boogeyman Pitch threatening the world's children, Jack must band together with the group to stop Pitch and ultimately find out his purpose in life.
 
I admire this movie from multiple angles, all of which generally point to the fact that it's a heartwarming callback to childhood and the awesomeness of magic, when animated films and the holiday spirit were more fanciful and fun, imbued with a sense of wonder that's as innocent as it is nostalgic. There's no cynicism here nor a whole lot of darker "Pixar" depth or even attempts at such. But that's okay; Guardians is instead wholly optimistic and carries with it a spirit of hope that just leaves you feeling good. The ensemble of heroes are nicely developed personalities and have logical and fun relationships with one another (for example, Bunnymund and North have a slight rivalry as the two big, annual gift-giving figures), but even beyond that their camaraderie and individual passions for what they each stand for and believe in is enjoyable.

 

However, I've got two big reservations with the actual storytelling which downplay the conflict, both through a muddying of the film's mechanics and by bringing up something that's just irrelevant and gets in the way, and if you view Guardians solely from the perspective of an action movie then you may be disappointed:
 


1.) The belief system makes no sense. Belief basically grants a mythical figure physical and magical strength, as well as the ability to be directly seen by any believer. The more children with faith, the more powerful a mythical figure becomes. In the beginning, everyone believes in the official Guardians, and no one believes in the villain Pitch. So you'd think they would've been able to handle his ass before he began sabotaging the holidays and customs, yet he managed to actually kill Sandy! Even more confusing is that in the finale, a mere five or so children believing in the Guardians completely revives them, which further raises the question "How strong are they when the entire world believes in them?" It weakens the conflict as a whole and makes it more circumstantial than anything.
 
2.) Jack's insistence on finding out his past feels tacked on because it adds nothing to his dilemma that couldn't have been solved by his far-better relationship with Jamie. We get no development time with his family, a natural consequence of keeping the whole thing a secret, while Jamie is a recurring protagonist throughout and is thus pivotal to the conflict. Couple that with the fact that Jack displays love for his job more often than not, and that the discovery of his "Center" doesn't hinge on knowing who he was, and I feel you could've cut that all out together in favor of developing his issue with not being believed in instead.


 
They don't serve to completely destroy the movie, as once again I feel it's more of a love letter to its themes than an action film. This is especially present in its aesthetics. Everything is rich in detail- expected of a big studio CGI flick- but the entire look comes across like a storybook illustration instead: Lots of atmospheric lighting, speckled sand effects, stylized fluff for hair and fur, and finely detailed yet fantastic set pieces showing off where the Guardians live. This can be a little overwhelming sometimes, especially during action pieces where constant movement and motion blur stacks on top of it to obscure the fight choreography to some degree, but most times it's just disgustingly good-looking. Also be on the listen for its orchestration by Alexandre Desplat, which is a little more grandiose and classically-oriented than what you'll hear from Dreamworks' usual team of Zimmer and Powell, especially this gorgeous credits song performed by Renee Flemming.
 
Guardians isn't the absolute best by any stretch of the imagination. As a movie, it has some notable flaws, and the fast pacing might make it feel a little thin, but it honestly believes in itself and is dedicated to it themes in a way that is refreshing and lovely. If you don't leave it with at least some admiration, or a smile, dare I say you're kinda heartless.
 

 TheCroodsLogo.jpg

 

Meanwhile, The Croods. They're one of the last families in the area, due in part to patriarch Grug's obsession with being over-cautionary for survival's sake. Hunt in the day, go back before nightfall, fortify the home, and stay safe in the dark is the only routine they know, although rebellious daughter Eep doesn't much like it. Her curiosity eventually leads her to meet Guy and his sloth belt named, well, Belt. He's a veritable genius who's aware of upcoming apocalyptic disaster and is hightailing it out of there. As he leads them away, Grug must contend with the thought that surviving doesn't necessarily equate to living.
 
The Croods is a whole different breed of film. With Chris Sanders (Lilo and Stitch, How to Train Your Dragon) at the helm, it instead values fast-paced goofiness and a fascination with close calls, tumbles and hard impacts, and split-second bodily harm reminiscent of Ed, Edd, n Eddy. The Croods also- surprisingly enough- act like cavemen and cavewomen, by which I mean their physical strength, speed, and bestial habits are freaking amazing, and it's put to excellent use in Roadrunner-styled sequences of hunting and dodging predators. All of this serves as the framing for a narrative that intertwines the themes of light versus dark, conservatism versus novelty, and strength versus intelligence.
 
It's all amusing but regardless you've seen these characters before, and subsequently you've probably got most of the plot and development figured out. But the movie knows this and doesn't care. Rather, it uses the stereotypes to its strength, trotting around to have fun with the cast through some defining dialogue and comedic timing, even in the tamer social interactions. Also, I say you probably have most of the plot figured out for a reason: The climax does a veritable Toy Story 3 by presenting a moment sheer hopelessness, and it actually does it better considering it relies on its previously introduced assets and conflict rather than deus ex machina to pull it off to some surprise and suspense.

The art is unique, to say the least. It's difficult to praise the designs of the humans beyond them having great silhouette, because in general it looks like Sanders' humans were finalized by a more conventional artist who's in love with sharp angles. It's a case of personality over looks, but the animals fare far better, especially the Saber-toothed tiger whose face will remind you of Stitch and Toothless, an impossibly-big-headed kitty cat whom you'll grow to love after two great scenes. But ultimately, landscape is the winner of the day: Exotic rainforest and plains landscapes are done justice after Dreamworks set to reformatting its technologies and pipeline, and it boasts some of the best explosive and dust effects I've probably ever witnessed in an animated film yet.

So, The Croods is pretty much pure popcorn fare, but it's the good kind of popcorn fare: It's not reinventing the wheel, but it still sticks squarely to the basics of nice animated storytelling to present a rollicking little romp.

That's my verdict on those two movies. Feel free to discuss them, or if you've got nothing to say on either, discuss Dreamworks' upcoming summer blockbuster extravaganza! =D
 

 
O u guise. 939

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I've been really wanting to see their latest two movies sometime. The Croods in particular seems better than some of the trailers make it out to be (although I did enjoy the very first one that mostly focused on Eep).

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Let me tell you about one of my favorite movie series, and why Dreamworks will always have a special place in my heart for creating it.

 

 

 

Kung Fu Panda

 

One thing that surprised me about Kung Fu Panda was how great of a film the sequel was. It was one of those rare times when a sequel to an original film turns out to be very good. Dreamworks deserves a lot of credit for that.

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One thing that surprised me about Kung Fu Panda was how great of a film the sequel was. It was one of those rare times when a sequel to an original film turns out to be very good. Dreamworks deserves a lot of credit for that.

 

 

Yeah, to this day I'm still shocked at how the sequel actually managed to make me cry during that one scene. That's something Pixar could do with most of their movies (TS2 and 3, Up) but never with DW despite knowing that they've done at least one movie in their early days that had a dramatic tone (Prince of Egypt). 

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Oh look DreamWorks might make a good movie again.

What's this about? There last meh movie was probably Monsters vs. Aliens. They make good shit all the time.

IDK, what was their most recent movie?

The Croods, which was freaking awesome.

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