‘The Croods’ Caveman Take On Father-Daughter Tension

Stories about daughters and their overprotective fathers sometimes seem to stretch all the way back to, well, the cavemen. But I have to admit I’m kind of excited by Dreamworks twist on that dynamic in The Croods, which features Nicholas Cage as an overly cautious caveman dad who tells his children stories that all end with the moral, “One day, she saw something new and died,” and Emma Stone as his adventuresome daughter, who gets her family out into the sunshine:

I dig that the daughter’s adventurous spirit isn’t just a way of asserting her right to make her own decisions and to be trusted by her father, but as a means for her entire family’s evolutions. And it’s cute that her name is Eep, a name that sounds an awful lot like Eve when spoken aloud, which is appropriate for a girl who’s leading people into a world garden, especially if she doesn’t get blamed for screwing things up this time around. Hopefully her father gets to be something more than the garden-variety animated neurotic or oaf, or both, as cartoon fathers so often tend to be.