A groovy, socially conscious triumph, the Oscar-winning Happy Feet stands at the very top of the 2006 animated kid’s film class. It’s no surprise to discover that George Miller – the man behind Babe and its stellar sequel – is capable of crafting children’s entertainment that’s at once playful, intelligent and modestly profound, but his ability to make penguins seem fresh and fascinating after 2005’s ubiquitous March of the Penguins hype is more than a minor feat. In this rollicking tale, young penguin Mumble (Elijah Wood) becomes a pariah when it’s revealed that he can’t sing like the rest of his flock – their songs (imaginative hybrids of tunes by Prince, Boys II Men, and countless others) functioning as the lynchpin of the mating ritual – but instead has irrepressibly dancing feet (modeled on the moves of Savion Glover). Mumble’s toe-tapping saga is one of exclusion and intolerance, his difference derided but ultimately proven to be the key to the penguins’ survival, as the animals’ way of life is threatened by a severe fish shortage caused by humans. Especially during close-ups and picturesque master shots of the frigid landscape during snowstorms and sunrise, Miller’s CG animation is a wondrous thing to behold, and his two centerpiece action sequences (involving a seal and two killer whales, respectively) are both formally exquisite and technically breathtaking. What truly holds Happy Feet together, however, is the magical, mystical aura that envelops Mumble’s boisterous journey from arctic snow to caged zoo and back again, the director marvelously capturing a sense of the world’s grand beauty and strangeness – and, just as impressively, finding two suitable, distinct roles for that strangest Hollywood bird of all, Robin Williams.