An underrated Benedict Cumberbatch movie is finding a lot of love on Netflix this week, and it’s one you probably forgot he was even in.
Last weekend saw 2014’s Penguins of Madagascar added to the streaming giant’s library in the US and subscribers are lapping up the film, as it’s currently sitting as the third most-watched pic on Netflix this Wednesday, according to FlixPatrol. Only recent original Outside the Wire and Thomas Jane thriller The Vanishing currently rank above it.
A spinoff of both the Madagascar movies and the TV series of the same name, Penguins of Madagascar follows the quartet of quirky flightless birds – Skipper, Kowalski, Private and Rico – as they get swept up in a globetrotting adventure in order to foil the evil schemes of Dave the Octopus (John Malkovich). Cumberbatch factors into the film as Classified, a British secret agent wolf who works for North Wind, an all-animal international intelligence agency which also includes Belgian seal Short Fuse (Ken Jeong) and Norwegian polar bear Corporal (Peter Stormare).
Penguins was met with warm reviews when it came out, and it sits as the second highest-rated of the Madagascar series on Rotten Tomatoes with a cool 73% – only Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted beats it, with its Certified Fresh 78%. The site’s Critics Consensus reads a little harsher than the score would suggest, though. “Penguins of Madagascar is fast and brightly colored enough to entertain small children, but too frantically silly to offer real filmgoing fun for the whole family,” it summarizes.
Unfortunately, the spinoff also ranks as the lowest-grossing of the DreamWorks animated franchise in terms of box office, though it still managed a respectable $373 million worldwide. Thanks to Netflix, however, countless users are now getting to rediscover the movie from the comfort of their sofas, whether they come for the voice of Benedict Cumberbatch or not.