- Movie Name:Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild
- Critics Rating: 2.5 / 5
- Release Date: 28 January 2022
- Director: John C. Donkin
- Genre: Adventure, Animation, Family
With reunions, sequels and spin-offs in the offering, it's not new for filmmakers and franchises to cash on the popularity of the previous superhit films. Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild is no different. The film begins on a nostalgic note, reminding the viewers of what happened in the last 20 years. As the narrator explains the events, new and old characters are introduced. The Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild, the sixth instalment in the long-running “Ice Age” franchise resumes the escapades of the beloved prehistoric mammals.
With an appetite for independence and in search of some space from their elder sister Ellie, the thrill-seeking possum brothers -- Crash and Eddie -- begin their expedition to discover a place of their own. But can things be this easy? Obviously no! The awesome possum brothers fast see themselves hedged in under an enormous cave below the ground.
To their rescue comes the one-eyed, adventure-loving, dinosaur-hunting weasel, Buck Wild. Together they face the unruly dinosaurs who inhabit the Lost World and have a little fun in the meantime. But only a little fun. The writing is devised practically for kids, with occasional quips for the grown-ups.
It appears as a film released 20 years ago, especially when you have animated films like Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Enacto and Soul in juxtaposition. Rather than offering a dazzling spin-off that would exhilarate the audience, the film seems chained.
Surprisingly, the possum brothers Crash and Eddie don't manage to grip you enough to sit through the run time of 81 minutes. Crash is voiced by Vincent Tong, while Aaron Harris inhabits Eddie. Whereas, Simon Pegg, who returned to voice Buck Wild is much more appealing to hear. He's entertaining and so is Justina Machado, the voice of Zee. The evil villain, Orson voiced by Utkarsh Ambudkar turns out to be the most enticing character to watch. He appears convincing enough to say that he deserved the end he met with.
Adventures of Buck Wild also tried to represent disability in an empowering way. Through Buck it sort of tries to explain how self-love and belief despite having limitations can make people look up to you. On the other hand, Orson, who all his life has been mocked at and bullied because of his grown brain symbolises the destructive outcomes of trauma leading to vengeance. Sadly, like everything else in the movie, the theme is not scoured in detail or with nuance. Likewise, the brothers, who were so keen on looking for independence, don't seem to question when someone else tries to dictate how their life should be. Technically, Eddie was doing the same in the beginning.
With a superficial plot and unexplored storylines and themes, the film leaves us longing to believe this make-believe world. For someone who's grown up enjoying Ice Age films, this was supposed to be the movie to come home to, sadly it's not. Previous films in the franchise served the audience of all age groups, however, director John C Donkin forgot his audience has aged. Released 20 years ago, the film had its quirks and wits that received thunderous laughter responses from the audience in the cinema halls. But, no matter how much you loved and relished a certain thing two decades back, chances are bleak that you'll enjoy it with the same sobriety now, Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild suffers. It is nostalgic and you feel good about it too sometimes. But that's very limited.