Ice Age: Continental Drift

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Ice Age: Continental Drift
Ice Age; Continental Drift.jpg
The Ice Age franchise jumped the shark with this film...
Genre: Animated
Directed By: Steve Martino
Michael Thurmeier
Written By: Michael Berg
Jason Fuchs
Starring: Ray Romano
John Leguizamo
Denis Leary
Nicki Minaj
Jennifer Lopez
Queen Latifah
Patrick Stewart
Photography: Color
Distributed By: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: June 20, 2012 (CineEurope)
July 13, 2012 (United States)
Runtime: 88 minutes
Country: United States
Prequel: Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs
Sequel: Ice Age: Collision Course

Ice Age: Continental Drift (also called Ice Age 4: Continental Drift or simply Ice Age 4) is a 2012 American computer-animated adventure comedy film produced by Blue Sky Studios and distributed by 20th Century Fox. It is the sequel to the 2009 film Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and the fourth film in the Ice Age series. The film was directed by Steve Martino and Michael Thurmeier from a screenplay by Michael Berg and Jason Fuchs. In the film's ensemble voice cast, Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Queen Latifah, Seann William Scott, Josh Peck, and Chris Wedge reprise their previous roles alongside Keke Palmer, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Jennifer Lopez, Josh Gad, Patrick Stewart, and Peter Dinklage voicing new characters. The film had its premiere on June 20, 2012, at the CineEurope film distributors' trade fair in Barcelona. It publicly premiered on June 27, 2012, in Belgium, Egypt, France, Switzerland, and Trinidad, and was released on July 13, 2012, in the USA. A sequel, Ice Age: Collision Course, was released on July 22, 2016.


Scrat's continuous pursuit of an infernal acorn has world-changing consequences for Manny (Ray Romano), Sid (John Leguizamo) and Diego (Denis Leary) when the continents split apart. The continental crack-up separates Manny and his friends from the rest of the herd, including Manny's mate, Ellie (Jennifer Lopez) and rebellious daughter Peaches (Keke Palmer). The pals are desperate to return home, but a pirate (Peter Dinklage) and his ragtag crew stand in their way.

Bad Qualities

  1. The film is inferior to the first three Ice Age films, and it lacks any charm or charisma of the first three, as it is completely unnecessary for various reasons and was made to cash in. The main reasons that it didn't need a sequel is because the third film had a good ending where it didn't need a sequel because Manny finally found a new family and it ended the franchise on a high note. In fact, its likely that Fox saw the box office of the previous movie and forced Blue Sky Studios to milk the series just for money.
  2. Diego and Shira's romance sub-plot seems pointless and serves no purpose to the actual story.
  3. It recycles most of the element stories it has from Ice Age: The Meltdown.
  4. All of the adolescent animal characters are portrayed as cocky, popular-teenager stereotypes.
  5. A pointless blink-and-you’ll-miss-it-scene of Buck and Rudy from Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, when Scrat is falling through the earth, which can be seen within the first 5 minutes.
  6. Several of the characters never got a proper introduction of how they became a part of the characters lives.
  7. Some of the humor can seem forced and nonsensical, like one hypocritical joke about mammoths going extinct and another mammoth claiming it as a "double burn".
  8. Manny's character has been flanderized in this, he went from a sophisticated, grumpy yet likable leader to a typical "overprotective father" cliché with Peaches, which was copied in Hotel Transylvania, that came out later in 2012.
  9. The film can run on several amounts of mean-spirited levels most of the time, like how Sid's actual family, who is unlikable and pointless, abandon him and his granny because they’re screw-ups & “dead weights” and how Peaches is bullied by the Brat Pack (except for Ethan who is likable) at the beginning of the film.
  10. They brought Drake and Nicki Minaj in just so the film could appeal to the tween demographic and hip-hop fanbase.
  11. Scrat's slapstick gag of failing to get his acorn went from funny to causing more conflict and chaos for our main characters; which makes him the villain rather than Captain Gutt.
  12. The film feels like it's trying to juggle too much subplots.
    • Manny trying to return to the Continent to reunite with his family.
    • Captain Gutt wanting revenge on Manny for destroying his ship.
    • Shira's redemption arc.
    • Sid trying to look after his grandmother.
    • Scrat using a treasure map to find his acorn.
  13. The humor in this film made the franchise lose its way as it relies on humor from the 2010s generation.
    • On that topic, while the previous Ice Age films relied on its own humor while staying true to its era to make it seem more realistic. This film goes full fantasy with some of its scenes, like the ending scene with Scratlantis.
  14. Peaches' behaviour and personality in this film is just a "bratty teenage daughter" stereotype.
  15. A few moments can portray as nothing but being filler, like the one with sirens trying to attract the Herd, heck it can even be an excuse to foreshadow the villain's defeat.
  16. Once it reaches its climax, the movie almost forgets who the main character is, juggling it between Manny, Sid, and Louis.
  17. The love triangle-story with Peaches, Ethan and Louis is incredibly pointless and feels clichéd.
  18. Overuse of movie clichés which we’ve seen several times in other films.
  19. The scene where Sid and Diego kiss each other is childish, cringeworthy, disturbing and unneeded.
  20. Questionable song choices for the Ice Age era that don't fit on each scenes.
    • At Ethan's party in the beginning, the song "Chasing The Sun" by The Wanted was used, a 2012 song.
    • In one scene, Manny sings "The Candy Man" by Sammy Davis Jr., a song that was released in 1971 for Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory movie.
    • The end credits song, "We Are", sung by the cast, while a good song, sounds too much like a 2010's pop song.
  21. Plot hole: Several of the animals aboard Gutt's ship are carnivorous - Shira and the elephant seal, for example - yet all the "pirate booty" is fruit and vegetables. What are these characters eating?

Good Qualities

  1. Decent animation that's a big stand-up for the previous Ice Age films.
  2. The voice acting is pretty decent like the first three films.
  3. The only new characters that got a proper introduction were Captain Gutt and his pirates and they can actually be entertaining villains:
    • Shira is a great new character.
    • Louis is quite likable too.
    • Ethan (the leader of The Brat Pack) is alright too, as he doesn't bully Peaches unlike his friends do.
  4. Wanda Sykes' performance as Granny can get a good laugh once in a while.
  5. Nice soundtrack, such as Captain Gutt's villain song "Master of the Seas" and the end credits song, "We Are".
  6. There is a one good moral about never leaving a friend behind.
  7. Some funny moments like when Sid got sick from eating the berries, drank saltwater, and the "Holy crab" joke.
  8. The cameo of Buck and Rudy, while very quick, is a nice easter egg to the previous film.
  9. At least contains a reference to the first film, with Diego mentioning his former pack while talking with Shira.
  10. The relationship between Manny and his daughter Peaches is heartwarming.
  11. The ending is really emotional especially when Manny reconciles with Peaches.
  12. Scrat is still hilarious and his subplot where he searches for Scratlantis is funny and creative.
  13. Unlike Manny and Sid, Diego isn't flanderized. Instead, he remains an likable character.


Ice Age: Continental Drift received mixed reviews from critics and fans alike. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 37% based on 134 reviews and an average rating of 5.09/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Ice Age: Continental Drift 3D has moments of charm and witty slapstick, but it often seems content to recycle ideas from the previous films.". On Metacritic, the film has a score of 49 out of 100 based on 29 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale. At the time the, movie was considered the worst movie in the franchise until Ice Age: Collision Course (released four years later) came out which got worse reviews.



  • This movie would've taken place in the modern times with Manny, Sid, Diego, and Ellie being defrosted in a museum.
  • Gutt was originally conceived as a tiny rabbit (which would later be transplanted to Squint), and also as a bear, but the designers had trouble designing the character. Someone hit on the idea that a primate would be right at home swinging through the rigging of a pirate ship, and thus Gutt became an ape.
  • Jeremy Renner was originally cast as Gutt. He presumably exited the role due to scheduling conflicts with The Avengers.
  • Ray Romano's eldest daughter Ally voices Meghan one of the snobby teen girl mammoths, following suit of her younger brothers Matt and Greg (since at least one of Ray's kids have voiced a minor role in almost every sequel).
    • John Leguizamo's kids Lucas and Allegra also provide additional voices (Like Ray, at least one of John's kids have voiced minor roles in the sequels).
  • The idea for Ice Age: Continental Drift was actually partly inspired by the Odyssey, as where Manny gets separated from his family, he is stuck in the middle of the ocean, and his goal is to get back to his family.
  • Peter De Seve, the character designer, had a lot of fun designing the new pirates. When making Captain Gutt he realized he could make him have a pirate outfit just by changing up his hair to make Gutt look like he is wearing a pirate hat.
  • The team wanted to expand on Scrat, instead of him being to the side of the main plot, he would be the one to actually cause the main plot.
  • In this movie, the Blue Sky Studios team decided Diego would have more focus and a bigger character arc than he did in the last two films.
  • Ice Age: Continental Drift and Ice Age: Collision Course were not directed by Carlos Saldanha (the co-director of Ice Age and the director of Ice Age: The Meltdown and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs), which may explain why Ice Age: Continental Drift and Ice Age: Collision Course are sort of awful films.
  • Steve Martino, who was a director along side Mike Thurmeier, actually went to Latin America and hiked up a glacier to see what it looked liked, and to see the textures of the glacier, for when they were making the film.
  • The film was accompanied by the short animated film The Longest Daycare featuring Maggie Simpson. Ironically, this short film was better received by than this movie and some even paid to see this movie only to see Maggie's short and then left the theater.
  • As a promotion for Ice Age: Continental Drift, Fox released two 3-minute short segments from the film, titled Scrat's Continental Crack-up and Scrat's Continental Crack-up: Part 2. The first part premiered as a theatrical release attached to Gulliver's Travels in 2010, and it was released on-line on January 6, 2011, on iTunes Movie Trailers. The second part was released on November 16, 2011, on iTunes, and debuted in theatres with Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked. The first part shows how Scrat's actions lead to split of the continents, while in the second part, Scrat's underwater pursuit of acorns leads him to a pirate ship.


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