Latest Featured Reviews RSS icon

page: 1 | 2 | 3
Toonboy's avatar
KF Animation Editor
Reviews: 319
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Star vs. the Forces of Evil © Disney / Daron Nefcy Productions
rated it:
posted: Jun 19, 2016

I picked up watching this show in bits and pieces here and there, with nothing really standing out to me enough to become a constant fan. But let's face it. Disney XD shows are really good at that quality. Upon watching the season one finale recently, however, something about the episode forced me to pay closer attention to the show. It could've been the pitch perfect voice acting, over the top as it may be with Marco's parents. It could've been the not too shabby animation. Whatever it is, it culminated in some of the most earnest cartooning in an action/comedy hybrid format this side of The Powerpuff Girls, 2016 reboot notwithstanding.

At a basic level, SvtFOE reminds me of an odd mix or Courage the Cowardly Dog and Sailor Moon, were Sailor Moon somehow made into a witch that looks like Betty Spaghetti and saddled with freakish magical powers strong enough to destroy the very fabric of all space and time(as well as turn stuff into fluffy laser shooting puppies).

As I was watching Marco and Star do their... dimension hopping thing(done via a black hole carving pair of scissors), I realized that Marco and Star had chemistry, chemistry I haven't seen in a cartoon since, well, probably Batman and Robin or the aforementioned Powerpuff Girls. In any standard cartoon, Star would've been the damsel in distress, written in only for romance, with Marco being the one to save the day. Or a male and female hero team would've gone off into obvious directions, such as irreconcilable differences between girly and macho. While there might still be time later on to sneak in the mushy stuff, it is never heavily leaned on that there could be romantic tension between the two. Despite her magical pretty princess outward appearance, Star is also quite capable of delivering a punch to the face. Marco is karate expert but is also just a normal human boy(and is thus probably the more likely of the two to get captured). He also likes a ringtone called Space Unicorn.

The characterizations of these two honestly made me start to care for them. Certainly enough to laugh at the lame jokes and sight gags, as if they were played straight. And certainly enough to go along for the ride during the episode's intriguingly gripping climax, upon reflection of which, I never realized this show's episodes HAD climaxes. It was such a shame the writers had to sabotage the emotional impact somewhat by resorting to a deus ex machina. Even so, I can't wait to see what weirdness Season Two brings. They really should try and kick up the villains.

lonely_princess's avatar
KF Animation Editor
Reviews: 106
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Bambi © Disney
rated it:
posted: Jun 17, 2016

Firstly I want to point out I never cried when Bambi's Mum got shot as she was used too many times in other films such as Jungle Book and Rescuers to name a few to make me beleive she was really dead when I was a child.

Now thats over with lets get on with the review shall we.

Animation wise this is absolultly stunning its like watching a work of art. Except sometimes theres confusion whether they want realistic looking characters e.g The Great Prince or cartoony ones e.g Thumper. The backgrounds are the best I have ever seen in an animated film to the point I wish I could remove the action and watch them instead.

Musicly this is beautiful especially my faverite background music of any film "The Gallop Of The Stags". The songs are nice though the singers can get a bit too operatic at times thank God for subtitles.

Story wise this is a nice coming of age story though like the Nostalgia Critic said after Bambi's Mum is shot and he meets up with his Dad we are hardly given time to take it in when they start bombarding us with happy thoughts so it felt like we wernt given time to breathe and take it in.

I highly recommend this film

Toonboy's avatar
KF Animation Editor
Reviews: 319
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Zootopia © Disney
rated it:
posted: Jun 10, 2016

This is a tough movie to review. It simultaneously screams four stars like a lion while whispering three stars in the background noise like a quiet lamb. Ultimately, it's hard to ignore that this is the single most positively reviewed Disney movie of all time save for perhaps Toy Story 2, which still boasts an astounding 100 even after all these years.

Watching Zootopia, I got a vibe similar to Cats Don't Dance. Bright eyed, fresh face youngster hops on a mode of transportation, rides through a pretty title sequence away from Podunk America and towards a bright future in a big city, but instead finds injustice. The difference between the two movies is in the way it handles the social themes. Cats Don't Dance seems to tackle straightforward stereotyping and ends in a chipper "nothing can go wrong" attitude.

Zootopia, on the other hand, seems to tackle society's stickier ills. It tries to hold up a mirror to the real world and go "This is what you are." I couldn't help but think of the discussions and fights over today's more contentious societal topics, like the battle over transgenders and where to use the bathrooms or the rights of homosexuals to get married. Sadly, I imagine most parents won't even broach these sticky topics with their kids or, even worse, remain just as thoroughly dense to it as the children and see only the cute, fuzzy animals cracking wise. There's also no such happily ever after ending here.

Zootopia doesn't linger on this heavy stuff too long. It thankfully drops it in small doses in between the more relatable story of Judy Hopps and her personal obstacles, which weaves in the thematically similar but more digestible lesson regarding "You can't do X because you're Y." Plus rude neighbors. Who hasn't dealt with that?

The question many viewers will probably wonder is if Zootopia should be watched as some kind of lesson preaching movie or as a movie to take in for the funny stuff(it is hopefully assumed that most people realize by now that this movie has next to zero musical numbers). It thankfully does a lot of the second, probably far better than the first. While I wouldn't say that I guffawed a bunch of times like some of Disney's classics, there are a number of good zingers in this movie, all played with impeccable facial expressions and comedic timing, and with hardly any usage of groan inducing puns or pop culture references, although this movie does breathe new life into the classic butt joke in one moment that's both tense and hilarious.

That's also not to say that this movie isn't really good when it's not trying to be funny either. In fact I found the characters so charming that it was easy to become emotionally invested in them during key heartwarming moments.

It's just a slight letdown that this movie stumbles, but only slightly, in fits and spurts here and there. Underneath the hefty messages lies a cop story. It is in this territory that the movie doesn't quite gel. It's not hard to spot how this movie drops macguffins and plot coupons left and right. It also gets slightly clumsy in the deliverance of its messages of diversity and tolerance, through which the movie intermingles its "you can be anything you want" themes. If it is to be believed that Zootopia tackles all of today's topical ills plaguing society, such as the current battle over transgenderism and homosexuality--I mean let's face it, the twin barbs mentioned within of "fear is a powerful motivator" and "we are the majority" could be applied to anything--then the continued usage of the word "predator" would probably seem rather icky, as "predator" is the exact word real life bigots use to justify their worldviews. Likewise, there's an underlying theme of "you can rise above your nature, your biology", which is a lovely sentiment, but in human-land certain natures aren't anything that's broken and shouldn't be seen as something that needs fixing, altered or "risen above".

I can't say if this movie justifies the glowing reception it's been given, but it does feel like a very important film for Disney. I imagine the mascot for the film's message, the very sexy Gazelle, will soon become a favored character. It's the kind of movie that feels like a soothing warm bath that takes away your aches, yet you discovered you burned the batch of coffee you're trying to enjoy with it. It could just be me reading too deeply into things. Yet I couldn't imagine anyone watching this film just to sit back, turn off brain, and look at the cute, fuzzy animals.

Even so, when it comes right down to it, it IS the characters, it IS the fact that we are watching cute fuzzy animals and that their personalities are so charming that raises this movie up and makes it stick with you.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Alpha and Omega © Lions Gate Films / Crest Animation Productions
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

This movie had potential, but failed. I wouldn't call it a truly bad movie, but it's just...There. Nothing about it that could really stick out, it's easily forgettable.
The animation is decent, however the character models and anatomy looked really off and weird, disturbing at times.
Backgrounds are one of the redeeming qualities, being pretty nice to look at and feeling alive.
The movie's interpretation of the wolves' howl was pretty interesting, and I enjoyed it.
Plotline wasn't very interesting, it kept being too distracted by continuing out-of-place humor that I couldn't get invested in it properly. However, I must admit that Humphrey's feelings were pretty relatable, and I liked his character. The contrast between him and Kate was pretty nice too.
This one felt like a basic popcorn movie that leaves no lasting impressions. While it is not a complete failure, unlike all of its sequels, it really can be ignored.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Oliver and Company © Disney
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

This movie is so underrated, when it REALLY SHOULDN'T BE. I love this movie so much. Everything about it. The story, the backgrounds, the animation, the atmosphere, the characters, the music...Everything works so well.
First of all, I love how many conflicts this movie has, both internal and external: (SPOILER ALERT) Olivers torn loyalty between his friends and Jennifer, Dodger having to sort out whether he values his gang identity or actual relationships more, Fagin's external struggle with Sykes and internal moral conflict...I could go on. (END OF SPOILERS) All of them work together really well and bring a very interesting and emotionally compelling story.
The music is fantastic. I love the 80's music style, and it's done especially well in this movie. Every song was great and didn't feel out of place - they all worked well to convey the emotions and struggles of the characters.
Sketchy look of the backgrounds looked excellent and did a great job maintaining the atmosphere of the always-in-a-hurry NYC.
Characters were all very nice, and there wasn't a single one of them that could have been left out - they all served a role in the story, contributing to the conflicts. All of the designs were also really great and distinct.
I honestly cried many times throughout the entire movie - there are many relatable, believable moments in the movie that just tug at the heartstrings with their purity.

Amazing, touching movie. Definitely one of the greatest Disney works, and one of my all-time favorite animated movies for many reasons.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic © Hasbro / Studio B Productions / DHX Media
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

Excellent, one of the best children's series airing nowadays, it definitely deserves all the attention it gets.
Characters are incredibly well designed and thought out, their personalities unique and consistent throughout the series.
Plotlines are very interesting, have a great balance of comedy and serious moments. While some resolutions might be hasty and rushed, I'd like to blame that on the 22-minute time limit rather than poor writing, because, well...The writing definitely isn't poor. Each episode and each season gives something new and refreshing to both original stories and those who have been done in previous TV series and movies.
I especially like the morals, life lessons that each episode gives. Those are honestly really great, useful for both children and adults.
All in all, interesting plotlines, great visuals and character development, also perfect, relatable morals all put together to one great TV show.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Zootopia © Disney
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

Surprising and inspiring.
You can call me oblivious, but for the most of the movie I honestly didn't foresee the direction this movie would take, and most of the choices that would be made or revealed. It started out as a story of one character trying to prove the world wrong and destroy stereotypes, but then it expanded while taking a different direction too. And its amazing.
The Zootopia's design is amazing, and it is obvious how much work was put in it, because it looks very believable and sorted out to the smallest detail - all the areas, cooperation of different species of animals, their personalities, etc. The city felt really alive, an inspiration for tons of brainstorming, fanwork ideas.
Plotline was great - surprising, yet consistent, with great balance of comedy and serious situations.
Characters were really likeable and believable, their personalities and goals were fleshed out very well, and were never forgotten throughout the movie.

Excellent modern animated movie, surprising and well thought out. Definitely one of the better nowadays Disney's works.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
The Lion Guard © Disney / Mercury Filmworks
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

Harmless and cute continuation of the great Lion King trilogy, and a great way to introduce younger audience to this classic.
Sure, it takes some time for those who have long known the original movies to get used to different voices, models and roles of the main characters, but it's a minor thing honestly.
Animation wise it looks okay, nothing too spectacular. The movement and basic models of the characters seem off, but I honestly don't expect more from TV show. The backgrounds are pretty nice,not too impressive, but pretty enough to look at. Music is honestly one of the harder aspects to judge - while there are many songs that just feel like filler and have no redeeming value whatsoever other than to move the plot along, some are indeed catchy and nice. So, I guess I should say the music is mediocre.
The plotlines, though predictable, rushed and suited for younger audiences, are still nice and don't actually get annoying unlike they do in some shows.

Yet, the thing that I like the most about The Lion Guard is that it makes the Pridelands feel much more alive. In the original trilogy all we get to see of Pridelands outside our main lion characters and sidekicks are just animals playing cameo roles and walking around to serve as a background. In this series, animals other than lions are constantly used in the plotlines, get their own personalities and are there to actually serve the story. This way we get to learn more about the lands themselves outside just the Pride Rock inhabitants, which, in my opinion, is really nice and entertaining.

Fun series, definitely worth seeing if you're a loyal Lion King fan.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Bambi © Disney
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

Work of art in motion. Well, I guess all animated movies are like that haha, but this one really feels like a painting in motion. Honestly, everything about this movie showcases the best of animation of its' time.
Backgrounds are fantastic. They are not artificially brightened and don't have any special effects on them to look more ''cheerful'' or anything, no. They are natural, blend in well, excellently conveying the monotone, slice of life feeling of the depths of the forest, and they don't overwhelm the characters while still being gorgeous to look at.
Animation is excellent, smooth and natural looking.
However, what really stands out is the music. It's powerful and emotional, portraying and complimenting the situation really well.

This film didn't need words, action and dialogue to succeed. The emotion in it and obvious dedication behind it does the job.
Masterpiece.

Serra20's avatar
Fledgling Reviewer
Reviews: 8
Share this review
Share review on Facebook
Bambi 2 © Disney
rated it:
posted: Apr 25, 2016

I honestly really hold this movie high for probably one reason - it expands what was begun in the amazing original movie, and gives it character. Main characters are no longer mysterious and quiet, and while in the original they seemed elegantly distant, here we can actually get a glimpse of their personalities and relationships with one another through actual dialogue. This is that one thing I really enjoyed this movie for - for making me love the characters I took a liking to in the first movie even more.
Backgrounds are really well done, not too detailed, looking like a painting at times, yet still lively, which is a great callback to the original Bambi.
Animation is really smooth and well done, movements looked natural. And I swear, the designs of the characters are excellent, especially the Great Prince - he looks gorgeous.
Music, while nothing too extraordinary or spectacular, is still very nice. Definitely had some stuck in my head for some time.

Also I honestly believe that Bambi and Bambi 2 can be used to compare and see how much times have changed, how the same story is seen and portrayed through different points of view, understanding.And that is very valuable.

Sweet, enjoyable film.

page: 1 | 2 | 3