CONTAINS SPOILERS AND SNOBBERY
Hurrah! It's another movie in 3D! But although I really like the new 3D polarisation process (rather than the old red/green that didn't work on objects or characters that were actually red or green and turned everything to a kind of dogmess brown) I'm not going to go and see everything. I passed on the handful of music concert films we've had: The Jonas Brothers, U2, even Hannah Montana, but obviously I'll go to horror movies in 3D (Scar, My Bloody Valentine) and there are more on the way - another Final Destination, a remake of Piranha. And I've tried a few "digimation" movies - computer animation of either the motion-capture or Pixar varieties, and generally enjoyed them.
But now there's Ice Age 3: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs, and I'm afraid it's damping my enthusiasm for the 3D process. Ultimately, whether it's in two or three dimensions is secondary to whether it's actually a decent movie or not and I really don't think this is up to par. It's certainly not up to the level of the first two movies - I don't see all the CG cartoons, but I do catch a few of them and both Ice Age and Ice Age 2 were more or less acceptable. This isn't. I don't think the characters are there, it isn't funny enough and despite all the slam-bang and scary monsters it isn't really exciting enough either.
I'm also slightly puzzled as to who it's aimed at, because while the first two were generally agreeable knockabout full of cute cartoon animals aimed at children, this seems on one level to be full of genuinely adult material. It's about pregnancy and childbirth. It's about midlife crisis. It's about parenting. It's about Moby Dick. It's also about terrifying big-ass flesh-eating monsters. But it's got a U so it should be fun for the kiddies, right? Even Jurassic Park only got away with a PG after a poster warning advising of its intensity.
I deliberately aimed for a one o'clock showing because I didn't want the place to be full of screaming schoolkids making a damned nuisance of themselves. Unfortunately this didn't exclude pre-schoolers and babes in arms who were placed on the row in front, just too far away to yell or throw things at and too young to realise what was going on (and certainly too young to understand the pregnancy and parenting stuff). The older of the two children - aged about four - wasn't even wearing the 3D glasses! As a result he whined endlessly but the mum was too busy trying (and failing) to shush the baby and she patently didn't give a hoot about anyone else disturbed by their noise. Really, just because it's a U doesn't mean it's somewhere to take the tiny tots if you can't even try and exercise some form of control over them. It's not a creche.
And on a similar subject: just because it's a heatwave doesn't entitle blokes to go around the cinema with their shirts off. Possibly, if you're sculpted like a Greek god with a physique that could turn Peter Stringfellow, you might get away with it. But when it's a middle-aged gut like a bowling ball in a plastic bag, please don't.
Amazon stock this: