– It’s Indiana Jones blended with the Legend of Zelda series told as a stop-motion Kurosawa* film.
– At some point, you’ll think that this movie was entirely computer generated because the stop-motion** in it is that damn great***.
– A real breeze of a movie, as the story never truly slows down. Once you’re immersed in their world, it just keeps going.
– Fun characters that you can actually get behind.
– Some creepy character designs as well, lending to some somewhat scary sequences for kids. BUT, that doesn’t mean they can’t or shouldn’t watch the movie. This isn’t “SAW”.
– Embraces Japanese culture, especially Origami.
* Akira Kurosawa was one of the most famous and GREATEST filmmakers EVER. He made contemporary films dripping with social commentary BUT he’s most famous for his films that took place during the Samurai (or “Edo”) period in Japan. Some notables are “the Seven Samurai” (which was remade TWICE as “the Magnificent Seven” [including this year’s version]) and “the Hidden Fortress” which influenced a little movie called “Star Wars”.
** If you don’t know what stop-motion is, “Stop motion is an animation technique that physically manipulates an object so that it appears to move on its own”, per Wikipedia. Y’all’s favorite movie “the Nightmare Before Christmas” was made in stop-motion. I taught myself stop-motion as a child after watching A LOT of Gumby but never any behind the scenes featurettes (there was no youtube in the 80’s). After some exploration of the video camera my parents had bought, I was on the ground running, making little movies with my action figures.
*** So seeing a movie like this and what they did with the medium, I’m re-inspired after not having done it myself since the late 90’s.
– The end credits have a fantastic Beatle’s cover by Regina Spektor.
– Final Letter Grade: A-
Jose Zuazua is editor-in-chief of Quick Lunch Break Reviews. He has an associates degree in film production. He’s on twitter (twitter.com/josezuazua) and instagram (instagram.com/josezuazua).