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ByCara Stobo

Oct 22, 2018

Smallfoot, an animated film by Karey Kirkpatrick (Chicken Run [2000], The Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy [2005]) and Jason Reisig (Shrek [2001], Spider-Man 2 [2004]) is the fifth movie by fairly new production company Warner Animation Group.

It follows the lives of the yeti community who, for as long as they remember, follow a number of stones, who profess how to live their lives. Whilst training for his new job as gong-banger (to wake the sun), Migo (Channing Tatum), ends up finding an elusive smallfoot, or human to the audience. Banished by the tribe for disregarding the stones, Migo seeks the help from the SES — other yetis who believe in the smallfoot. These members include Meechee (Zendaya), the stonekeeper’s daughter, Migo’s love interest, Gwani (LeBron James), and Kolka (Gina Rodriguez). Together, they hatch a plan to reach the bottom of the mountain to try and find proof of smallfoot’s existence.

Meanwhile in the town, Percy Patterson (James Corden) is filming his nature programme which is currently lacking in viewers. Before long, Percy and Migo meet and, through language difficulties, manage to help each other out. Migo and the rest of the SES must then try and convince the tribe that the smallfoot is not the enemy.

The movie, which is a musical, is a fun family flick, with laughs for both kids and adults. Animation wise, it is apparent to the audience how much detail has gone into this film, from the fur of the yeti to the constant snow drifts that frame the Himalayas. The music itself doesn’t stick to just one genre, with the song ‘Wonderful Life’ being an obvious choice for ex-Disney Channel Princess, Zendaya. However, ‘Let It Lie’ could easily have been pulled straight out of the Hamilton soundtrack. This allows the movie to keep the audience on their toes and not become samey, like so many kids musicals are.

With common family film tropes come quick laughs for the children, including poop jokes and slapstick humour. What is different about Smallfoot though are the clear adult references, such as a Top Gun (1986) and Pac-Man that would go over the average child’s head. Even the language used is clever enough that the adults in the audience will get enough laughs to keep what could be an average kids film entertaining.

The story itself has a sweet message about staying true to yourself and standing up for your friends, which would have even the stoniest of hearts become a little weepy.

Image: Warner Bros. Pictures

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