By Tracey Matheson
Welcome to Zootropolis!
The latest in the line of blockbusters stood on the foundation that was built by Disney himself, this family friendly film will no doubtedly become a hit that will survive the ages as it tells the story of a curse that has plagued the world since the beginning of time. Prejudice and discrimination.
These two issues are portrayed in the film in a way that children can understand and people of all ages are taught to stand up in the face of adversity. This issue is show through the characters of Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin), a small town bunny trying to prove herself in the Zootropolis Police Department and Nike Wilde (Jason Bateman) a cunning street wise fox who has successfully conned his way through life until meeting his match in Judy. Co-director Byron Howard tweeted that his inspiration for Zootropolis came from his love of the 1973 classic animated version of Robin Hood, which the title character is played by none other than a fox and it really shines through as Nick is an instant hit at least to the audience.
The pair are shown to be an unlikely couple, especially considering the amount of prejudice prey have against predators, making them out to be savage and untrustworthy with the fox being one of the most untrustworthy mammals in the city. Judy witnesses this first hand when Nick is refused service at an ice cream parlour with his supposed son. Although falling into his a con, Judy put aside her own feelings and did what was right even though at the beginning of the film she was shown to be attacked as a child by her a fox named Gideon.
The jokes within the film prove to be appealing for both kids and adults, with a lot of pop cultural references (such as a not so subtle nod to breaking bad). It just goes to show the message in the film needs to be aimed at both adults and children as it is designed to appeal to both.
The whole point of the film is to show that unity within the city was something that could only be achieved by trust and would be destroyed by intolerance and panic. Panic within the city spread hate and mistrust and that in itself reflects the real world in a way that’s relatable for both children and adults alike. But more than that, it shows that just because somebody says you can’t doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try.
A wise man once said that there are no dumb animals, they are all smart in their own way and this is showcases in this film. Sly and cunning are used as insults toward Nick in the film, Judy is always criticised for being small and cute, but both use them to their advantage and it proves that despite what anyone says its your belief in yourself that matters. This message is so important to children who are still being told they can’t do things because of their size, race or gender.
Zootropolis goes above and beyond what’s expected of ‘just’ a kids film and exceeded my expectations ten fold. If it wasn’t for the unnecessary character of ‘Gazelle’ played by Shakira it would be five stars. But if you can grin and bear it through the obvious plug it’s more than worth a watch