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Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted
Category Comedy , Adventure , Animated , Family
Year: 2012
Time: 93 minutes
Production: Dreamworks Animation
Director: Eric Darnell
Cast:
Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett Smith, David Schwimmer, Sacha Baron Cohen, Tom McGrath, Frances McDormand, Martin Short
MPAA PG
Our Rating 4/10 - It's a bad sign when even the Penguin cartoons are better ... and funnier. Nowhere near as good as Madagascar 2
Watchability 4/10 - Based on 2 things -- the excellent London circus sequence, and that song!
 
Plot:

Alex, Marty, Gloria, Melman and the others have grown tired of Africa, and long to return home to New York. When they don't hear from the Penguins who took the plane to Monte Carlo, they decide to swim for it and find their little friends. Sure enough things don't go to plan and soon they are being chased through the city streets by the tenacious Captain DuBois of Animal Control ... their only hope of escape is to join a passing circus, and earn their ticket back to the Big Apple as part of a new show -- the "Afro Circus".

 
So, how does it end?

The animals reach London and pull together to work through a mult-million dollar budget and perform the greatest animated circus act sequence you've probably ever seen to Katy Perry's "Firework".  (It's a little better than Dumbo)

The American promoter is sold, and signs the contract with "The King of Versailles" (one of the monkeys in disguise) to bring them over to New York.

Meanwhile Captain Chantel DuBois breaks out of jail in Rome, returns to the hospital in Monaco and sings "Non, je ne regrette rien" to revive her men, and break them free of their casts.

While in New York the secret is out, and Gia and the others learn that Alex and pals are zoo animals. They were used as a means to get them back home. Alex, Marty, Gloria and Melman leave to return to the zoo, while the circus animals must struggle to put on a show themselves.

Alex and the others reach the zoo, and realise that it's not how they remembered it. It's very small, with walls to divide them. Suddenly DuBois shows up and the animals are hit with tranquiliser darts. Julien manages to stumble back to the circus to warn the others.

The Zoo Keepers arrive just in time to stop DuBois taking them away, but she takes credit for their capture. 

Later, they hold an impromptu event to thank DuBois publicly for bring back Alex the Lion ... and friends, who are all locked behind tall barb-wire fences. DuBois is presented with a cash reward, but she tears up the cheque and loads a poisonous dart. She aims the gun towards Alex ...

When suddenly the circus is back in town, and the others have somehow flown in to the rescue. All the animals perform their circus acts to escape -- Vitaly squeezes through a keyhole to save Marty, while Gia and Alex perform "Trapeze Americano" to get out of his cage. Stefano the Sea Lion falls, and DuBois is almost onto him. Alex jumps to rescue his friend. The little dogs power up their jet-powered skates, and the animals perform the final number - Alex is falling to earth with DuBois, but the little dogs attach themselves to his back to form some sort of jet-pack and he flies to safety. The crowd goes wild.

DuBois is tranquilised, goes a little mad, and knocked senseless back into Alex's cage.  Later she is shipped to Madagascar with her men in crates similar to the first movie.

Everyone else is back together to keep the circus on the road, and perform the Circus Afro song one last time.

 
Comments

I know it's only a movie ... and an animated kid's movie ... where animals talk .... but at least you have to have some rules, otherwise what's the point?  So the animals decide to swim from Africa to Monte Carlo - but why stop there? Just keep on swimming over the Atlantic and you'll be home dry.  And what's with the giant Tiger jumping through hoops the size of a ring?  They should have stopped at the head-size ring which, although a bit crazy, you can just about get away with. The ring just breaks the rules again, for no reason.

And there's no point to the weird little English dwarf dogs -- surely it would have been better to use Maurice and Mort more and give them more screentime, and the jet-powered skates. Mort is the one of the best things about the franchise, and is barely in it.

All the charm, and comedy, from Madagascar 2 is missing here -- and there's a bit around the middle where you will just be bored for a good ten minutes.  I used to love this franchise ... please, no more -- or bring in new writers!

 
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