Aparna (inspirethoughts) wrote,

Movie Critique 2016 – 06/30/2016: Zootopia

Continuing with the critiques I started in 2015, here is the next in series – a movie review.
Prologue: Go here.

Stars: 4.5 / 5
Recommendation: Much needed life's lessons taught through simple animals and seemingly complex twists.

Zootopia is a 2016 American animated comedy-adventure film released by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the 55th animated film by Walt Disney Studios. This became the third highest-grossing film in 2016. At first I had no inclination of watching the movie. However the talk about it was so much that it piqued my interest and thus my watching it and then writing this review. Zootopia is set in an alternate world where the animals are anthropomorphic. The concept of that is very close to humans that it creeped me a bit during the movie, yet I still enjoyed it well.

The plot begins in Bunnyburrow, a small rural town, with Judy Hopps - a rabbit - fulfilling her childhood dream to become the first rabbit police officer in Zootopia - an urban utopia. Judy Hopps realizes it is indeed a utopia upon reaching. The train she travels makes through three different regions of Zootopia - an outer most desert,

a middle icy snowy region

and an inner rainforest region

before reaching the central urban Zootopia.

However when she reports at the central police station, Chief Bogo puts her on parking duty.

Despite her disappointment she thrives on becoming the best parking police. In the process she meets Nick Wilde - a sly fox - and Finnick - another fennec fox - two con artists. Nick slyly escapes an arrest by quoting that he hasn’t done anything that was not within the law. The next day she Judy ends up abandoning her duty and arrests Duke Weaselton - a thief who stole plant bulbs . Instead of praising Chief Bogo reprimands her. In the midst of it, Mrs. Otterton enters his office and begs him to find her husband Emmitt who had gone missing. Despite Bogo's objeciton, Assistant Mayor Dawn Bellwether gives the assignment to Judy for which Bogo gives 48 hours to find Mrs. Otterton or else!
In her investigation she finds that Nick was the last person to see Mr. Otterton alive. She blackmails him into becoming her partner and help her find Mr. Otterton.

In their investigation, they find out a much bigger secret than what they had imagined. The so called predators that Chief Bogo has been assigned to hunt, are they in real predaotrs? What is happening in Cliffside Asylum? What is Mayor Lionheart's hand in it? Who are the "night howlers"? The duo Judy and Nick set on this path of investigation and finally expose the real culprits behind the entire scandal.
I liked the movie as it hit so close to home when we are facing so many lives being killed. Blue Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter, Brown Lives Matter - so many slogans we are seeing around. But the simple thing is ALL LIVES MATTER. That was the message being sent through this movie. All lives matter as they bring balance and semblance to nature. One cannot eliminate one race, say predators, attesting to biological reasons - for not all predators come with claws or bite. Excellently depicted message and perfectly used animals for each role - so close to their nature yet so different from what they actually do.
All in all a well made animated film that leaves a distinct mark behind.
Spoiler Alerts:
1) Tommy Chong played the role of Yax, a laid-back yak who is the owner of the naturist club Mystic Springs Oasis in Sahara Square. How so suitable for Tommy who had played so many marijuana-themed movies.
2) J. K. Simmons played the role of Leodore Lionheart, a lion who is the noble, but pompous Mayor of Zootopia. I remember him as the serious Dr. Emil Skoda on the NBC's Law & Order franchise and as a level-headed Assistant Police Chief Will Pope on TNT's The Closer.
3) Don’t forget Shakira as Gazelle, a famous pop star who rocks the charts at the end.

4) Nick becomes the city's first fox police officer at the end. He teams up with Judy in solving crime.

5) Nick and Judy's cop car has a very interesting name. :)

Tags: critique by amateur, movies, reviews

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