Right. Rabbit wants to be a cop. Rabbit succeeds by overcoming her limitations. Rabbit still has to prove herself and takes on a huge case that tumbles into a larger mystery. She succeeds, the end.
That’s what you get because I don’t want to spoil it. Sure, due to how late I make these, it’s for the benefit of those that buy the home release more than anyone else but I’m keeping tight lipped for now on that. Mmmhm! Nope! Not saying a thing. Honestly, the trailers probably do too much of that anyway.
As per usual, da-di-da-di-da.
But, further analysis? I don’t know if I can avoid spoilers but I shall try.
So, Disney has been doing stellar work recently. Inside Out, Wreck It Ralph, Frozen. All movies which captivated audiences and have helped put Disney on top. More so now they’ve got Marvel with them too. It’s getting a little too incredible that these guys haven’t stumbled yet. Kick out Isner and look whatcha get!
So, instead of a Sisterhood reunion, a protracted therapy session and a huge mental metaphor, now we're getting social and political commentary for 8 year olds!
Time to sit and listen to the Teacher while they tell you all about how
judging based on looks is bad.
The theme at the centre of the film are simple enough: use your own passion and skill to overcome your obstacles. You have to prove yourself to get ahead and adversity can even be simply no one believing you're capable of anything. Our main character, Judy, is that little rabbit that could. She’s surrounded by huge animals in comparison and it’s quite clear she’s physically inferior to the lions, elephants and wolves around her. Yet, she succeeds, beats the odds and becomes an officer.
It’s about dreaming big then doing big.
This is a wonderful film. It's vibrant, it's full of neat ideas and it's funny as all hell. I love this movie. It's one of those few films I'd want to see again. Oh yes! It's 'Repeat Watch' good. Even 'My Cinema's going to know me by first name basis' good. This deserves your time and money.
But everyone's probably seen it already by now. I do have something to add to the discussion.
The only thing I could spot as a chink in an otherwise highly entertaining movie, it’s that it can be on the nose. There are many parts where it shows it wants to be a message movie. It is an Aesop’s fable with cellphones. The beginning is the big part where we’re told everything we need to know about the movie. It’s themes are flagged up and any subtext the film could have had is brought to the forefront nakedly. There is a speech about the joys of complacency, for crying out loud! As well as a direct confrontation with an example character contradictory to what she believes about the two species that populate this world: prey and predators. It does not pull back with the ideas it want’s to push, instead planning to rub your nose in them to ensure you know loud and clear what's up.
A friend of mine quoted me as saying I hated the movie for it. Which is ridiculous but let me clear up any misconceptions. I love the movie. This part bothered me as weird as it seemed like the better of the available options. The movie is talking to kids the loudest and most directly than anyone else. It also has a kinda complex moral to convey as well as having to establish our world, the rules, the main character, whatever supporting cast is nearby and some stakes on the line for Judy should she fail.
As if I'd hate a movie like this! HA! Now, I'm eternally miserable about
Ratchet and Clank being crap (according to reviews as it's not out in the UK yet (I think))
and I was holding out hope Angry Birds might have been fun. A foolish fox, I am...
So, they be upfront with it but always trying to make something either memorable, funny or pull double duty as both character building and world building. The opening scene of Judy performing in the little school play about Zootropolis introduces the place to us and shows off how passionate Judy is about what she does. That continues in her conversation about her dream of becoming a Police Officer in the big city with her parents. The complacency spiel is square on the nose but it’s illustrating her parent’s panicky nature as well as being part of the mentality a lot of Prey species have in this. They’re not much for aspiring to the stars here. Judy seems like a huge outlier in that sphere.
The confrontation with the fox cub was like a brick to the side of the head, especially when he's specifically talking about being a big bad nasty fox. I get it, he’s the personification of everyone else telling Judy she’s going to fail in her ambition. He’s the assumptions and fears that Prey have against Predators. He’s supposed to be that unspoken dominance Predators are alleged to command. But I got all that and so did everyone else. This is a new world and new characters. The movie hinges on you being onboard with Judy from the get go. You have to care about her and you have to know what’s up.
Ah! Reference to a funny line in the movie and showing how literal the symbolism
gets in this.
Within about ten minutes, I know what Judy believes, what she’s like, what the environment she’s in is like, an inkling of what other Prey animals are like, an idea of what Predator’s are like, what our stakes are, where we’re going, how we’re getting there and the tone for most of this movie.
Even better, because Judy bested the fox cub at the start, we know she can walk the walk too. The audience needs all of this going forwards for the rest of the movie to work. Ordinarily, you’d sprinkle that throughout your movie, because no one likes exposition dumps except fans and the person writing said dump. Zootopia manages to get away with it because it keeps things entertaining. There is comedy and drama right when it’s needed. This is a ton of information all for the benefit of the audience, so that were all on the same page for the adventure in the big city later on.
In fact, being entertaining is heavily true for this film. This movie got me to laugh hysterically at barely anything happening whenever a sloth was on screen. It was able to keep me hooked from start to finish.
Let’s also give it over to Max Wilde too, Judy’s cynical counterpart. Again, a natural fit but also a genuinely enjoyable character to be with. He serves as Judy’s foil and partner throughout the movie. He’s great contrast.
The one issue with him was his own moment as a kid that mirrors Judy’s scene with the angry fox cub bully. All I was thinking was how much the movie vilifies these kids. I know, I know! We’re not supposed to like these kids and I can attest to how horrible children can be but bloody hell! They’re psychopathic! Is it really so weird that he'd want to join this damn club?!
Heh, there's a Simpsons Quote for everything.
Therein lies my issue with the movie. I think I fell into the same rough groove that a few other critics got to with this thing where they did see these little cracks. It's a little forced in places to ensure the characters get where they're supposed to do making the movie feel unnatural when it had clearly strived to make the world as believable as possible. It seemed over the top in a world that appeared so detailed and real, you could just drive there if you knew the way. This dissonance manifested itself the strongest when I was sitting there going 'Good grief, what's wrong with you people?!". It actually takes me out of the movie. I'm not angry with the kids, I'm angry with the movie itself for being so needlessly cruel. I'm a first-hand witness to how needlessly cruel children can be but what they did seems closer to cartoonish with how utterly humiliating it was.
I'd still recommend you see this though. This is probably more me with my personal mindset where I pick things apart and study them. I like to. I find it makes things more rewarding if I know how they tick. Clearly this issue wasn't a deal breaker if I'm urging you to see it. It's a movie where I laughed hysterically at barely anything going on whenever a sloth was on screen. The movie got me to laugh at itself literally wasting time, loving every moment of it. That's an incredible feat all on it's own. Watch it.
How about Hamster Business Men? Look at them! SO CUTE!~ I just want to snuggle one until their market share in hugglitude went up!
You need to be logged in to comment