By Akane McCann
A clever fox, an ambitious bunny, a gazelle pop star and sloths working at the DMV. Disney’s “Zootopia” is filled with beautifully animated animals with big personalities. “Zootopia” will have children and adults alike laughing out loud and smiling throughout the film.
In “Zootopia” young bunny Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) pursues her dream of becoming the first bunny police officer. She is assigned to the vibrant city of Zootopia where predator and prey of all sizes live in harmony. Upon arriving in Zootopia, Hopps realizes that life in the city will not be as easy as she hoped. Instead of assigning Hopps the big case she dreamed of, big bull Chief Bogo (Idris Elba) sticks her with parking duty. Determined to prove that she is a real police officer in a precinct of large tough mammals, Hopps accepts Bogo’s challenge to solve a case of predators going missing in 48 hours or give up her badge for good. To find the missing predators Hopps must team up with con-artist and eyewitness fox Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) in an adventure what will truly change both of their lives.
Directors Byron Howard, known for “Tangled,” and Rich Moore, known for “Wreck-It Ralph” along with co-director Jared Bush have created another film that is entertaining for the whole family. The animation for “Zootopia” is fantastic. Each character from towering elephant to tiny mouse has their own personality and the perfect facial expressions, movements and voices to match that bring the characters to life. Goodwin and Bateman voice Hopps and Wilde perfectly. You may also recognize the voices of J.K. Simmons as Mayor Lionheart, Jenny Slate as assistant mayor Bellwether, Tommy Chong as Yax and Shakira as superstar Gazelle. Gazelle’s (Shakira’s) song “Try Everything” is catchy and upbeat and will be stuck in your head for days reminding you of “Zootopia” long after you leave the theatre.
“Zootopia” is charming, wonderfully written and beautiful to look at. The movie is very cute so it will be entertaining for young children, but there are also many jokes that little ones won’t understand that will have adults laughing out loud. The city itself is stunning and very well designed. Watching “Zootopia” you can really tell that a lot of thought was put into the animals and their sizes. Each animal is their natural size, so while Hopps looks tiny at the police station filled with rhinos, bears and elephants, she looks like a giant in the small town of Little Rodentia. Each element of the city is beautiful and creative. You fill find yourself admiring the tall colorful skyscrapers to the miniature doughnut shops.
But don’t let the colorful city and cute animals fool you, “Zootopia” has an important lesson to share. For the young kids the movie will teach them that sometimes dreams do not come true easily and mistakes happen, but with hard work and dedication even unlikely dreams can come true. For older viewers “Zootopia” has a strong message of racism and its effects on society. In the city of Zootopia predator and prey are supposed to live together in harmony but prey make up 90 percent of the population. Even though times have changed and predators no longer eat prey, prey animals still treat predators differently. Even prey that are friends with predators find they are treating predators with an unconscious bias.
From big families with young children to full grown adults with no kids, “Zootopia” is a fun, hilarious and beautiful movie everyone should see. The film is rated PG for some thematic elements, rude humor and action. “Zootopia” is now playing at Maui Mall Megaplex Cinema.
“Zootopia” is excellent. My rating: 5/5 stars