Have you ever watched the zany TV series Minuscule? It's normally on just before the evening news on the ABC. It provides a bit of light relief before the impending doom and gloom of the news broadcast. For those of you who are still in the dark, Wikipedia explains it quite well: "Minuscule - the private life of insects, is a French-made series of short video animations giving a bird's eye view of insects' day to day existence, distorted through a burlesque, yet poetic lens."
The creators of this quirky TV series have now decided to expand their repertoire into an 88 minute long 3D movie and tell the story of a lone little ladybug and his adoption by a small army of black ants. The ants discover some sugar cubes at an abandoned picnic site and head home to their ant hill with their treasure and new found friend. Along the way they come under serious threat from some nasty looking red ants. The journey is fraught with danger and it culminates in an epic battle. A few adult themes and morals are thrown in throughout the film to show that good always prevails over evil and of course there is a dash of romance in true Hollywood style.
The story takes place in the French Alps and with the help of your 3D spectacles you feel as though you are at one with nature. The animation is fascinating as is the language that the insects speak. The music score was unfortunately lack lustre and repetitive - it needed a bit more of an ants in your pants kind of tempo!
Kids love all things animated and with the added impact of 3D they will have a big hoot watching Valley Of The Lost Ants. Sadly for those of us who are a bit older you may find 88 minutes just a tad too long to sit and watch silly insects trying to kill each other. I will be honest and say that I did catch myself snoozing during a few parts of the film - some scenes were just too drawn out to keep the adult viewer on the edge of their seat. The TV series of Minuscule is short, punchy, and has a dash of good old fashioned potty humour. Valley Of The Lost Ants sadly lacks enough of these elements to keep you compelled for the entire film.
I believe that the creators of Minuscule should continue with their original theme of minute movies. But in saying that, most family movies will always delight the children in our lives, so as adults maybe we just need to see the time we spend watching them as an opportunity to catch up on a few Z's?