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Entertaining voice talent and a variety of humor.
Since it's a spinoff of a popular animated franchise, you wouldn't expect The Penguins of Madagascar to be particularly good. Luckily the film subverts your expectations with a brisk globetrotting adventure that's hilarious and fun to watch. The movie boasts an entertaining arsenal of voice talent including Benedict Cumberbatch, Ken Jeong, Peter Stormare, Andy Richter, and the maniacal John Malkovich, who plays the picture's villain. It also has a variety of humor that appeals to all ages, from sight gags to one-liners, puns, and slapstick. The Penguins of Madagascar won't win any awards for originality and its messages about loyalty and being true to yourself are obvious, but at least its fast-paced narrative doesn't overstay its welcome.
Love these pengwings
I was wary of this after not liking any of the Madagascar movies, but good word of mouth led me to take my kids to it. They laughed a ton, and I loved just how dang smart this movie was. It takes a standard Evil Villain Schemes to Take Revenge plot and takes off running, with a fun octopus villain voiced by John Malkovich. The penguins' personalities are much better differentiated than in previous movies, and the movie makes you care (or at least take interest) in them.
The jokes come fast and furious and clever (a running gag riffing on celebrity names was consistently funny), and the action scenes are great (the Venice Chase scene stands out as one of my favorite action sequences of the year, actually). Fun is had by all. Recommended.
The evil octopus Dave vows revenge on the world's penguins for being more popular than him at every zoo he's been shipped to. It's up to Skipper, Kowalski, Rico, and Private to stop him, with a little help from the North Wind, a secret team of animal operatives.
Theatrical : 2015-03-27 : United Kingdom
Theatrical : 2015-03-27 : Republic of Ireland
Theatrical : 2014-11-26 : United States of America
Theatrical : 2015-04-02 : Netherlands
Theatrical : 2014-11-14 : China