Smart, original and surprisingly satirical, Zootopia is a very fun ride that might turn out to be the best animated film of the year
Director: Byron Howard and Rich Moore
Cast: Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman, Idris Elba, Jenny Slate, Nate Torrence, Bonnie Hunt, Don Lake, Tommy Chong, JK Simmons and Octavia Spencer
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Zootopia is a very welcome breath of fresh air to the animated film industry. Like last year’s critically acclaimed ‘Inside Out’, this film deals with practical issues and is highly original. Moreover, it has warmth, emotional depth and is packed with genuine comedic scenes.
Zootopia is set in a world that is entirely populated by animals of all kinds. However, these animals can walk, talk, and carry out their daily lives similar to way human beings do. This sets up a really interesting premise to the whole film. The film’s protagonist is a rabbit called Judy Hopps who is from the rural town of Bunnyburrow (pun intended, right?). She fulfills her childhood dream of becoming the first rabbit police officer in Zootopia, the urban utopia of the animal world. But things are not a walk in the park for her in Zootopia. She faces constant discrimination in the police force due to the fact that she is a rabbit (which is considered to be one the weakest animals in the whole animal kingdom) and soon starts to discover that Zootopia is not the perfect city it appears to be on the surface. Judy’s passion and determination helps her to keep going on. She soon forms an unlikely partnership with a con artist fox to uncover a major conspiracy about the governance of the city.
The setting of the city of Zootopia is very imaginative and is brought to life with some really exceptional visual effects. In fact, the animation throughout the whole film is quite aesthetically and visually appealing.
The writing is one of the films greatest strengths. Themes of breaking stereotypes, self-belief, challenging the status quo and prejudice are beautifully woven into the narrative. Moreover, what makes Zootopia a real standout film is its satirical undertones. There is also a really smart and hilarious homage to ‘The Godfather’ in the movie.
Hence, Zootopia is a film you should definitely watch regardless of whether you are a child or an adult. There is something in this movie for all age groups. It will definitely be nominated for ‘Best Animated Feature’ at the upcoming Academy Awards and as things stand right now, is the frontrunner to win it. Zootopia is a classic example of the transition that animated films are undergoing nowadays that is they are dealing with real life themes and issues. I believe that this transition is a healthy one and might play a pivotal role in reviving the golden era of animated films that we witnessed in the early 2000s.
FINAL RATING: 4.5/5
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