The Croods is easily one of the best animated films ever created. From the animation to the voice acting to the writing to the score, this movie has few if any equals. The opening breakfast sequence alone is pure cinematic gold. The Croods, a family of cavemen living in prehistoric times, survive by following the rules on the cave walls. Basically, anything new is bad, curiosity is bad, not being afraid is bad, etc. But when the end of the world comes, they are going to have to learn to adapt if they want to continue to survive. Forced to abandon the security of their cave and the mountainous desert that they know, they have to learn the new rules for the tropical jungle environment they now find themselves in. Here to help them, albeit unwillingly at first is “modern man” Guy.
There are so many things to love about this movie. The family dynamic is spot-on, especially during the “road trip” scene. Anyone who has ever had siblings or kids of their own will instantly relate. The blossoming romance between Eep (Emma Stone) and Guy (Ryan Reynolds) is too adorable for words. And over-protective dad Grug (Nicholas Cage) is absolutely hilarious. Grug’s interaction with his mother-in-law Gran (Cloris Leachman) also has me in stitches every single time. Mom Ugga (Catherine Keener), son Thunk (Clark Duke), and baby Sandy round out our family of cavemen and each brings their own contribution to the story.
I think what I love most about The Croods though, is the emphasis on healthy, loving family relationships. This family is vastly different from the dysfunctional type which is often portrayed in modern pop culture. Sure they don’t always get along nor are they perfect by any means, but they genuinely love each other. I am unashamed to admit that the “hug” scene makes me cry every single time. The Croods is a fun and funny, yet thoughtful and heartwarming film for the entire family.