Colorful but slow to earn your attention this new Disney piece is cliche -ridden and a tad didactic. Parents score high and so does following your dream, respecting diversity, and learning to hustle. Life is complicated, and drugs can turn you rabid.
The deranged predator and meek prey storyline is not logical, and the animal stereotypes are mocked while they are upheld. On the positive side, the sloths are hysterical as Department Of Motor Vehicle employees. My favorite line, for some reason, was “Did you steal a traffic cone?”
The entrepreneurial fox is both chastised and lauded for his frozen paw popsicles. The reselling of the stick holders as “red wood” can be seen as recycling or scamming. Nick Wilde as con fox is cynical, but learns from the young bunny over their adventure. The animation is top notch. The chase scenes are fast and fun. Some of the details are precious. I loved the elephant trunk as ice cream scooper, though the scoop was cited for health reasons. And the howlers were cool.
This is a film that models goal setting like issuing 200 parking tickets before noon. The five-year- old I viewed “Zootopia” with found a few scenes scary. Chief Bogo as bully bull was frightful in the way he kept our new recruit Judy Hopps ” handcuffed”.
The hidden messages using fear and distrust to control outcomes is timely. But this animated pic is way overrated in my view.
My favorite line in the Pixar-Disney Animated Studio’s new summer release is the off-hand lament : “Facts and opinions look so similar.” This remark should not be surprising since five core emotions rage on screen: Joy, Anger, Fear, Disgust and Sadness. Abstract thought is waiting in the wings as the inner workings of a child’s developing mind is awash in these emotions characterized and animated in colors and duties. Another favorite tossed off truism is “Emotions can’t quit, genius!”
This inventive film uses French fry forests,a bag of yellow joy balls, a Brazilian helicopter pilot,caramel corn curls and flowing ice-skating sequences to entrance and delight. Emotional intelligence has never been so teachable. Emotions work together. It is evident that psychologists were consulted as the mind’s interior workings are illustrated in the development of baby Riley. The storyboard takes us to Riley’s eleventh year as she deals with a cross-country move from Minnesota to San Francisco. Her “train of thought” is a train. Her personality aspects are “islands”,for instance,Goofball Island and Honesty Island. Memories go “long term” during sleep. We stack memories and have to work on keeping them with us as “core memories”. Memories fade to the “dump” when we don’t take care of them. The “mind library” is made concrete. And in terms of technology,one wants Joy to be in control of our “console”.
Core emotions tussle. Anger yells “the foot is down”,and imagination as an amalgam of animals is named Bing Bong. He has adorable heart-shaped nostrils and saves Joy with a Radio-Flyer rocket transport. The co-directors Pete Docter and Ronnie del Carmen are also the writers and they keep the voices of Amy Poehler (Joy) and Diane Ladd (Riley’s mother) especially strong.
The labyrinthine mazes in getting back to headquarters were hard to “find the fun” in,just like in real circumstances, but the suggestion that we “could cry until we can’t breathe” was presented as a silly option. The fact was stated and shown that Sadness is needed to return to Joy. As we grow our “console” expands and we even incur a “curse word library”.
No cursing will be done in viewing this sweet celebration of our emotional workings. Take a youngster and find that talking about feelings need not be a subconscious fear. I am certain that a sequel is in the offing. The pin-ball like gaming and the air transport tubes may have a drone or two added as those brain fragmentations and incidents of déjà vu present themselves.