Ice Age meets Batman in The Dark Nut Rises
|NEWS - MOVIE NEWS|
A cool parody, but it might have been more pun if they’d included Mr. Freeze…
With Ice Age 4, aka Ice Age: Continental Drift, coming out on July 15, and Serious Batman 3, aka The Dark Knight Rises, coming out on July 20, now would seem the perfect time for some sort of totally-not-contrived crossover between the knockabout animated family comedy franchise and the serious, gritty examination of the nature of superheroism. Well, here it is, and it’s brief but amusing:
Your move, Batman.
And standing perfectly still and half-heartedly growling in a deadpan voice: “I am Scrat. I am some kind of weird, funny squirrel-rat thing. Oh, where is my acorn? I must find my acorn…” just won’t cut it.
This is just the latest in a series of Ice Age short films, joining the likes of Scrat Gone Nutty, the half hour Christmas special, and The Artist spoof The Scratist. However, it probably has most in common with the latter, seeing that it’s a very short, promotional piece that spoofs one particular film. As such, it’s similar to the series of brilliant parody trailers for The Muppets, though not quite as amazingly delightfully wonderful as most of those.
Incidentally, and as Shadowlocked's NY Editor Nicole Ugrin reported a while back, Denis Leary prefers Batman to Spider-Man, despite being part of the cast of The Amazing Spider-Man. Denis Leary voices the sarcastic tiger Diego in the Ice Age films, who’s a little reminiscent of Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. (Basically, he’s sarcastic and awesome, and tries to be all tough and evil and “grrr”, but reluctantly finds himself on a redemption arc.)
And sorry Spider-Man, you may be an iconic character, but you can’t compete with Batman, Spike, and a tiger. (Incidentally, the name of my next band. Or comic book. They’re like The Expendables of fictional characters. Wait, tigers are fictional, right…?) Not that there’s any logic behind pitting them against each other in some kind of absurd competition…or any logic in this tangent/digression, for that matter. Where was I? Australia! (But with the Continental Drift, where’s that?)
It seems like the Ice Age franchise will just keep on going, all cosy and familiar and wacky and brilliant. And I have no problem with that.
All the Ice Age films have rather on-the-nose titles and subtitles, but somehow/weirdly, it doesn’t seem to matter: Ice Age, Ice Age: The Meltdown, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Ice Age: Continental Drift. At this rate, it wouldn’t be surprising if the fifth instalment were called something like Ice Age: Watch Scrat Be Funny. He is deservedly the breakout star, even if he’s largely incidental to the core (and heart) of the franchise, the found family between the other main characters.
In this short film, Scrat dons a rudimentary Bat-helmet, and becomes…Scrat-Man! (Yet still with high-pitched squeaks in the place of a growling, intimidating voice.)
The comparison is not only witty, but also apt. In a way, Scrat is like Batman. Scrat and Batman are both kind of tragic superheroes (though without superpowers). Scrat brings hilarity, while Batman keeps Gotham safe. Scrat, despite the almost Joker-like chaos caused by the conveniently inconvenient obstacles he faces, is forever chasing his acorn, which he hopes will provide the connection and family that the other characters (to a certain extent) have. And Batman’s forever fighting villains, though no matter how many he defeats, it’ll never bring his parents back.
But we still need the laughter, and Gotham still needs Batman to keep them safe.
IF YOU ENJOYED THIS ARTICLE, PLEASE HELP SUPPORT OUR SITE, AT NO COST WITH ONE CLICK ON THE FACEBOOK 'LIKE' BUTTON BELOW:
If you're interested in writing for Shadowlocked (disc and screening reviews, etc, or just getting some extra coverage for your extraordinary writing talent, get in touch with us.