Starting in Africa, where they were left in the second feature, Alex the Lion (Voiced by Ben Stiller – Tropic Thunder, Zoolander) decides on his birthday that they all need to be home back in New York where they belong. His buddy Marty the Zebra (Voiced by Chris Rock – Death At A Funeral, Grown Ups) seems to convince everyone they need to find the Penguins that abandoned them (with their witty and sarcastic leader Skipper voiced by the film’s director himself Tom McGrath) and use their now super plane to get back to New York.
On their way to Monte Carlo – where the penguins rule at a Casino with the wildly crazy chimps as their buddies - Gloria the Hippo (Voiced by Jedda Pincket Smith – Collateral, The Nutty Professor) and Melman the Giraffe (Voiced by David Schwimmer – Friends, John Carter) fall deeper into their romance with each other.
Enter the villain Captain Chantel Dubois, a mean and sadistic animal police catcher who prides herself by mounting her prey on her wall. Guess what species she is missing – A lion. This was incredibly voiced with such cleverness and French accented flair by the brilliant Francis McDormand (Fargo, Almost Famous). She even sings in French too! She is the reason the whole gang join the Circus – by accident.
Sacha Baron Cohen (Borat, The Dictator) is back as Julian as well as Andy Richter (Late Night With Conan) as Mort and even Cedric The Entertainer (Ice Age 2, Intolerable Cruelty) is back as Maurice. But with some great new and extremely funny charters created by Martin Short (Father of the Bride, How I Met Your Mother) as the incredible self-deprecating Seal Stefano and Bryan Cranston (Drive, Little Miss Sunshine) as the prickly Russian Tiger Vitaly, everyone plays their part learning what a circus team can really do and how friendships are important.
Directors Eric Darnell (Antz, Madagascar 1 & 2 – who also co-wrote this one), Tom McGrath (Megamind, Madagascar 1 & 2) and Conrad Vernon (Monsters Vs Aliens, Shrek 2) along with co-writer Noah Baumbach (Greenberg, Fantstic Mr. Fox) spent some time on relationships – a little too much in the middle – but paid it all off with a fast paced, fun and touching ending! Hans Zimmer (The Lion King) score is as always fanciful for this type of project.
The climax is fun – very colorful – and this was one of the better films that used the 3-D to its fullest advantage. Heartwarming is the ending, toe-tapping is the music, neon colors for the eyes and laughter is the ending. So, put on your ‘rainbow wig’ and see this Animated film first.
Movie trailer :