FILM REVIEW: Disney’s Zootropolis


By Fia:
Zootropolis has had the misfortune of being underestimated by Disney and they are only now realising what a gem they have on their hands. The most advertising I’ve seen done for this film is the hype it has been quietly generating from fans on social media platforms such as Twitter and Tumblr, and a couple of super short clips in the ad breaks on TV. I went to see the film with a friend I’ve known since uni and with both of us being in our mid to late twenties, we weren’t expecting to find the film as funny and engaging as we did. We laughed loudly throughout the film and our attention from the story and plot never wavered.

The visual side of the film was amazing and I’m just sorry we didn’t get several hours worth of footage of just the different `zones` of the central Zootropolis city (I was particularly fond of the Amazonian Rain forest type suburb) A lot of work went in to animating all the different animals and it really paid off, I would say Zootropolis trumps all other computer animated efforts from Disney and that includes their `human` characters from films such as Frozen and Tangled.

Plot wise I was only able to find one issue I had and it’s not a massive one – unfortunately I cannot say what it is as it would be counted as a spoiler – but other than that it was a diverse and interesting story that showed such adult concepts as privilege, prejudice and injustice between classes in a relatable and understandable way for all ages of audience. I especially liked how even though we see Judy Hopps overcoming other people’s assumptions about her and the adversity that caused, she was not excluded from being shown as having her own unconscious social prejudices.

Over all Zootropolis is definitely a film I would love to see again, especially in the cinema where I can properly appreciate the visuals once again. 5 out of 5

By SilverFox:
“In an else-world utopia where multiple species co-exist in relative harmony, a young idealistic female rookie cop forms an uneasy alliance with a cynical crooked small-time street hustler, in what at first appears to be a missing person case no-one is interested in solving, but may well develop into a conspiracy that threatens their entire eco-system…”

That’s my take on this film, and if that doesn’t read like a typical Disney animation plot-line, honestly – it’s pretty much the story-line. Okay, maybe Disney films have always had an underlying grown-up theme beneath the cartoon-ish veneer, but also perhaps some of that Marvel DNA is starting to trickle in as well – we can only hope.

Taking my spin on the story line, the story concerns a feisty rabbit, Judy Hopps, who leaves her parents’ small-town carrot farm to come to the big city of Zootropolis as their first rabbit police officer. Zootropolis is a sprawling mega-city divided into sectors such as Arctic World, Jungle Land, the Savannah etc (very Disney theme parkish!), linked by a massive rail network, where all of nature’s species (predators & prey) co-exist through the underlying foundation that the predators no longer have the instinct to turn on prey (how they sustain themselves is never revealed – probably a lot of soya). Coming from her small-town, Hopps has a mistrust of foxes, but is forced to confront her prejudices when she has to rely on the streetwise Nick Wilde, a low-life con-fox, who was the last witness to a missing person incident.

One of the most impressive things about Zootropolis is the execution of it’s setting, something that Disney does well anyway. The city is modern, the animals dressed, and performing functions / jobs in their eco-system that play to their physical attributes, e.g. the street-vendor elephants using their trunks to scoop ice-cream into cones. The characters are not original but are well-done nevertheless: Hopps is idealistic, optimistic and by-the-book in her approach to her role, even if her colleagues view her as a token attempt at rabbit integration; Wilde (voiced by the brilliant Jason Bateman) is a product of social rejection that has turned to crime, but clearly has a heart of gold (in true Disney fashion). The humour is brilliant: aimed firmly at the children (my 6 year-old was smiling all the time), with plenty of subtle “older” jokes that will keep adults entertained.

Checking with the target market (the children around me in the cinema as well as my own), the entertainment response was very high – my daughter said that she enjoyed this as much as Frozen (you have no idea what a big compliment that is!), and as soon as we got home, she insisted that we have to see it again with her brothers & mother! So Disney, from SilverFox & daughter, that’s 5 of out 5!

GS Rating: 5/5

GS Blogger: Silverfox


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One comment

  1. So they call it Zootropolis in the UK.

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