When Judy Hops (Ginnifer Goodwin), a forthright and idealistic rabbit, leaves home to become a police officer in the animal kingdom’s capital of Zootropia, she soon learns that life in the big city isn’t exactly what she’s come to expect. Not everybody gets along in Zootropia and soon she must face her fears and prejudices, working alongside a street-smart fox, Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) in order to solve a missing person’s case.
From the creators of Tangled, Bolt and Wreck-It Ralph, Disney delivers a vibrant wonderland of anthropomorphic animals in a contemporary style that tackles prejudice, celebrates the differences in everybody and does so with wit and heart. Zootropolis is in no way preachy or thematically ham-fisted but instead utilizes a colourful array of likeable characters and a strong narrative to educate and entertain all ages.
As an all-encompasing, family animation, the visual gags and in-jokes come thick and fast with a number of references that will shoot straight over the younger spectators heads. From The Godfather to Breaking Bad, Dodgy DVDs to a wry poke at Frozen, the creative team pack in so much that it will take repeated viewings to fully appreciate the intricate efforts made to fill every frame with good-spirited, Disney magic.
The aforementioned Goodwin and Bateman make for an affable tag-team as they bicker and crack wise. They each get a chance to shine and their arcs are satisfying come the final reel. Rounding out the numerous wildlife roles are Jenny Slate, Idris Elba, JK Simmons, Bonnie Hunt and Nate Torrence to name a few. The inclusion of both Shakira and Tommy Chong shows how all encompassing the voice cast and cameos are, each performance being something new from the jamboree bag at the House of Mouse.
A vivid colour palette, glorious CG and a joyously realised script makes Zootropolis (Zootropia in the US) an absolute must-see family movie. Come for the cuckles, stay for Flash the Sloth and leave with a lesson learned and a warm feeling if your heart. After Wreck-It Ralph, Frozen and Big Hero 6, Disney has pulled themselves into what we may look back on as a masterfully earned renaissance.
Zootropolis will launch in the UK on March 25th
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