Directed by one man who made Antz and another who used to work on Ren & Stimpy, this movie is virtually plot-free -- a scene or two from The Great Escape cut and pasted into an episode of Survivor. Its threadbare storyline, about four animals who escape from the Central Park Zoo and wind up stranded on a jungle island, sticks with you about as long as a small box of popcorn. Yet after the chum that was Shark Tale (also from DreamWorks' animation division), better a skimpy plot riddled with smart gags than a dense story sunk by leaden jokes that drown on the ocean floor. Madagascar, with the voices of Ben Stiller as a lion named Alex and Chris Rock as his best friend and zebra named Marty, is worth sitting through if only for a bit involving caged monkeys who want to see Tom Wolfe speak at Lincoln Center just to fling their own poop on his white suit, the fantasy of anyone who just got through reading I Am Charlotte Simmons.
Director: Eric Darnell and Conrad Vernon
Writer: Billy Frolick and Mark Burton
Producer: Karey Kirkpatrick
Cast: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer and Jada Pinkett-Smith