Quality Children's Entertainment Family Movie Reviews

Early Man – Unique Storyline, Exquisite Action Scenes, Rollercoaster Events

A plucky cave man named Dug, his sidekick Hognob and the rest of their tribe face a grave threat to their simple existence. Lord Nooth plans to take over their land and transform it into a giant mine, forcing Dug and his clan to dig for precious metals. Not ready to go down without a fight, Dug and Hognob must unite their people in an epic quest to defeat a mighty enemy — the Bronze Age. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Samantha M. comments, “This fantastic, animated film from Nick Park and Aardman Animations had me laughing the entire time. Hands down, it is the best movie I have seen this year.” Morgan B. adds, “Early Man really caught my eye with all the quirky characters, fun scenes and the excitement throughout the film. It is sure to be a film that you will never forget.” See their full reviews below.

Early Man
By Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 18

This fantastic, animated film from Nick Park and Aardman Animations had me laughing the entire time. Hands down, it is the best movie I have seen this year. With a unique storyline, exquisite action scenes and a rollercoaster of events, your eyes don’t want to leave the screen.

Set in the Stone Age, when cavemen and wooly mammoths inhabited the Earth, Chief Bonbar and his tribe are driven out of their homeland by a Bronze Age army, led by Lord Nooth (Tom Hiddleston). Lord Nooth claims the Stone Age is over, and Chief Bonbar’s (Timothy Spall) tribe is forced to remain in the volcanic badlands outside of the new city. A young caveman named Dug (Eddie Redmayne)  tries to attack, but is knocked into a basket heading to the city. He tries to hide, but ends up being mistaken for a football player. When Dug and Lord Nooth finally meet, they make a deal: If Chief Bonbar’s tribe beats Lord Nooth’s team in a game of football, then the cavemen can have their valley back.

Dug looks at every situation with optimism. He cares about his tribe and will do absolutely anything for them. Even though he knows he could lose his valley, he constantly perseveres and doesn’t think about giving up. Hognob (Nick Park) is the funniest character in the film. He is Dug’s pet boar and, although he has no dialogue, he makes the weirdest noises. Hognob is so adorable that I want a pet boar now. The relationship Hognob and Dug share is loving and reminds me of the relationship I have with my pets.

The animation is ingenious, because each character is unconventional. With crooked teeth, messy hair and big eyes, these characters are ones you haven’t seen before. My eyes were peeled the entire time, because I couldn’t stop admiring the unique animation. My favorite part is when Dug tries to steal some balls from the Bronze Age city. Hognob distracts Lord Nooth and has to play the harp for him, while he takes a bath. Hognob tries to sing and play the harp, but it sounds so terrible that it makes you laugh.

The message of this film is to never give up under any circumstances. Don’t ever feel intimidated by somebody, because with teamwork and optimism, you can accomplish absolutely anything. Appreciate your differences and remember that nobody can bring you down.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars, because I have never laughed so hard while watching a film. I recommend it for kids ages 8 to 18, and adults would enjoy it too. It is perfect to watch with your family and friends, because it will put a huge smile on your face and show you how important it is to follow your heart.

Catch this film in theaters nationwide on February 16, 2018. Find out what it means to be an early man.

Early Man
By Morgan B. Bertsch, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Get your footballs out and be ready to time travel back into the past! Early Man has to be a terrific film especially when the award winning people who brought you Chicken Run, Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep Movie are behind it. Early Man really caught my eye with all the quirky characters, fun scenes and the excitement throughout the film. It is sure to be a film that you will never forget.

The claymation in Early Man is terrific. It is astonishing all the different movement these characters make. There is a huge variety of characters, including a giant mega-teeth mallard duck.

Set your time machines to the Stone Age because that is when Early Man takes place. I like that this film  takes place in the Stone Age because it helps with the character development, settings and their lifestyles. I love that the characters are different from the people that we normally see in movies and on TV, because they don’t have technology, furniture or much education. Also the setting is very different because there aren’t very many houses, billboards or fast food stands like we have today. Instead, they replaced all those things with trees, volcanoes, hills and a giant palace. Since the characters don’t have all these things, it makes their personalities very lovable and kind. The tribe wants food and a bit of love from the ones they care about. Lord Nooth only wants gold and a winning team of football players. Then he will be richer then the Queen.

Dug (Eddie Redmayne) is a kind a silly boy who loves his tribe. He is my favorite character because when I see Eddie Redmayne playing a caveman after he played the stupendous scientist Stephen Hawking in the film, The Theory Of Everything, shows what a diverse actor he is. Eddie Redmayne has come a long way from playing Stephen Hawking to Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beastss and Where to Find Them to a comical caveman saving the world.

Goona (Maisie Williams) is the beautiful and fearless girl who saves the day along with Dug. She loves soccer and is the best in her sport. They do indeed need a good coach and she is just the one. Hognob (Nick Park) is the adorable pet sidekick who helps his friend Dug no matter what. He is willing to be a football golly, a spy, a masseuse and most importantly a cuddly friendly pet for his owner. Fun fact: This is the first time that Nick Park will have directed by himself. He is also the producer and a cast member of the film.

Lord Nooth (Tom Hiddleston) is the evil villain who we love to hate. He wants to keep all the land for himself. He also loves bronze coins and uses football games to get people to spend all their money on tickets and things that the games have to offer. One scene that I found to be visually astonishing is the football scene. I love that they spent so much time and effort on this scene and it all pays off in the end. I love the inside jokes that are in this scene and how each of the charters’ personalities shines. Also, when you really think of it the claymation in this scene is just mind-blowing. They had to move each character ever so slightly so they could capture a moment and they do it a million times to complete just this one scene in the entire master piece.

I recommend this for ages 5 to 18. Kids will love the silly charters and funny scenes while teens will like the story and relationship that the charters have. This is definitely a film for the entire family because there are jokes and puns for everyone. Also there is a bit of history so kids will have a bit of education while having a good time. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. It opens in theaters February 16, 2018 so be sure to check it out.

All Photos, courtesy of Aardman Animations



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