By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)
4K, DVD & Bluray Release
Feb 23, 2021
Movie review can be read here.
Fans of The Croods will definitely have a better appreciation with the new film after checking out the bonus material in the home video release. Even a greater respect is earned after seeing how much time was spent on story development. Joel Crawford and the writing team certainly struggled to figure a balance between the picturesque wonder that makes up this newly expanded universe, and a sequel worthy tale
The finale is established when Eep leaves the nest for good to create a family of her own with Guy. Part two is about the obstacles they face, including testing whether this teenage romance is just that, or can it be more?
Besides the usual package of added material–two new shorts, the gag reel and director’s commentary–there’s deleted scenes (seven pieces in all, and one is a variant of another), a “family album” introducing the characters and the performers providing their voices, the “Evolution of” segment showing how the film was put together, and with four how to activities for kids to do with parents. They include how to draw the Croods and how to make a few tasty delights featured in the film.
This release is far better than the first one. I bought the Walmart variant which came with a Belt stuffed doll. No Sash is spotted yet, but hopefully a future package will offer the two sloths together. This second film has an exclusive which isn’t as exciting–a puzzle and water bottle. At least Target is offering a variant which includes an art book since no official one is being offered when compared to the first film’s colourful tome which is now out of print.
Not to be forgotten in this release is an original animated piece, To: Gerard, which not everyone will take note of. DreamWorks shows they are able to create that PIXAR level magic. This short about an elderly man using the power of magic to brighten the day of a young girl is particularly enchanting (pardoning the pun).
From the material about the Croods, I particularly enjoyed “Family Movie Night: Little Red Bronana Bread” more than the “Dear Diary: World’s First Pranks.” The former offered a better look at how The Croods entertained themselves. We get more details as to how they made the puppets and this detail is better fleshed out. While this hijinks gets played out, Eep must keep Gran and her delectable bread safe from the punch monkeys. Technically, they have been having fun with this type of theatrical entertainment since Netflix’s Dawn of the Croods. The latter is more of a who can out do each other with the pranks.
Thunk provides the comedy relief and anyone who doesn’t know Clark Duke will notice how alike he is to his animated counterpart. It’s terrific to watch how much he’s contributed to this under appreciated character.
Ryan Reynolds shines with “Guy Gets Mad.” This deleted piece is one I wished that wasn’t cut. This actor is a talent who shines when not playing clean roles, and I love him for it. The role of that Guy to keep the franchise going is better understood when following the director’s commentary. Without him appearing in the next animated series (if there is one), I suspect this second movie is the last one. When considering this sequel took a long time to be made, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone at DreamWorks wants to retire this family much like the Penguins of Madagascar.