Hot Take: It’s as if someone took all of the unfunny parts of Happy Feet, Ice Age, The Penguins of Madagascar and Minions and tossed them in a film blender. Norm of the North is the horrific concoction that would ooze out. (We could call it an Arctic Shake… if you see the movie, you’ll get it.)
I’m not really sure what to say about Norm of the North. It could have easily been made a decade ago and been sitting in a studio’s film vault collecting dust. Look at the voice cast — Rob Schneider, Heather Graham, Colm Meany, Ken Jeong, Gabriel Iglesias — and most of them are no more relevant now than they were in 2006. At least if it came out in 2006, maybe some of it would have been new.
Norm of the North offers absolutely nothing new. We’ve seen what it has to offer many times (and done much better). Right down to the indestructible sidekicks (in this movie, they are the Lemmings. In others they are lemurs or most recently, Minions) who aid Norm in his effort to save his Arctic homeland from terrible humans who plan to colonize his home. (Spoiler Alert: Norm goes to New York and wins over the humans by doing his signature dance — because all Arctic animals have a repertoire of choreographed dance numbers — the Arctic Shake!)
There’s literally nothing for adults here unless bathroom humor is your bag. Apparently, a side effect of being indestructible is the Lemmings are unable to control their bladder and have a gas problem. There’s no reason to see Norm of the North unless you are dragged to it by a pre-teen who can’t get enough of animated bears.
“Spoiler Free” Pros
- 86 Minutes
At least it’s over quickly. It might feel like forever but you’ll be back to your day quickly.
- Seat Selection
At the showing I went to, I was the only person in a 400+ seat theater… and this was on opening night.
“Spoiler Free” Cons
- It’s Recycled (And Not In A Good Way)
The only thing that makes Norm of the North ecofriendly is it’s affinity for recycling things other animated films have already done.
- Don’t Think About the Plot
If you don’t heed the warnings above and you do see this horrible film, at some point you might be tempted to analyze the plot. Warning: DON’T DO IT! Your brain will hurt at the holes big enough to slide a dancing polar bear through. You’ve been warned.