"Maybe we could rapidly evolve into water creatures.
- That's genius, Sid.
Call me Squid."
'Ice Age' was a hit and the best animation in its release year. It lost the Oscar to 'Spirited Away', an Asian animation but it was so obvious that a sequel would be coming at some point. It took 4 years and 'Ice Age: The Meltdown' was released. It was an even more bigger success than its predecessor but was it better than the original, which I gave a 5 star rating?
As the first one, this sequel also begins with a scene starring Scrat, the sabretooth squirrel. And it comes as no surprise when I'm telling you that he (yep, it's a boy which is shown in the third film) still has an obsession with the damn acorns. The following scene shows the mammals enjoying waterslides and the heat. They've clearly skipped the fact that the ice is melting. When this is proven, the whole bunch start their journey to safer grounds.
On the way, the three protagonists of the first film, Manny, Sid and Diego, meet two opossums that suffer from really bad ADHD. They introduce the bunch to their sister, Ellie, who is in fact a mammoth but believes to be an opossum. Manny, who was sure that he would be the last of his species, is happy about the truth that he is not alone. Will Manny convince Ellie that she is not what she believes before it is too late? And by late, I mean before the two hungry water beasts rip 'em apart! The horror...
If 'Ice Age' looked great, this sequel looks even better. The film is richer in detail and the enhancement of character design has made 'em even more alive.
There's some new characters with Ellie the mammoth, played by Queen Latifah and two opossums, played by Seann William Scott and Josh Peck. Queen Latifah contributes with an excellent role as the lovable mammoth who amusingly believes to be an opossum. The two opossums have probably been created to give equally as many laughs as Sid the sloth but it's just not possible. For example the scene were the miniature sloths capture Sid and hold him as their God is one of the funniest scenes in the film. Scrat succeeds to deliver, again, several funny scenes and in the end scene, these two hilarious characters are united. Almost has the same magic as De Niro and Pacino in 'Heat'...
But is it as good as the first one? Here it goes: The story is less sympathetic than its predecessor and it feels as if the makers have wanted to make more of a faster, funnier etc film. But more isn't necessarily better. 'Ice Age: The Meltdown' lacks the charm, wit and heart of its predecessor but is in no way a bad sequel. The film itself is a fun ride but like so many other sequels, it just doesn't recapture the same feeling as with 'Ice Age'.