As the credits rolled on Zootropolis after a preview screening, my 7-year-old turned to me and said, ‘That was a very good movie.’
That, my boy, was an understatement.
Zootropolis is simply brilliant. It’s a madcap, action-packed and stomach-clutchingly funny tale set in a world where animals have evolved past their basest instincts. In the imaginary city of Zootropolis, prey and predators live together as one.
Except it’s not all sitting around campfires holding hooves and singing kumbaya. Despite the fact they school and work in an integrated setting, the mammals still find it hard to shake their innate stereotypes and, in some cases, outright fear of each other.
For Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), a fox who’s faced rejection and scorn for his ‘wily’ nature, you might as well give people what they expect and outfox them at every turn.
But for Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin), a small town bunny with a big city dream, it’s about challenging perception and going the extra hop, step and leap to prove herself.
Having made it to Zootropolis, she butts heads with police chief Bogo, (Idris Elba) a buffalo who has zero patience for this fluffy little upstart. Then a mysterious case of some missing animals, and a chance entanglement with foxy Nick, leads them to uncover a crime that strikes at the core of the city’s divisions, as well as their personal prejudices.
Zootropolis is an incredibly sophisticated animated feature that combines the best of film noir, screwball comedy and buddy flick — with clever nods to classic movies, from An Officer and a Gentleman to The Godfather.
The script zaps along, offering a layered exploration of tricky topics like bigotry, without ever feeling heavy-handed. There are hilarious scenes (look out for the sloths) and heart-tugging moments, and the animation is in a class of its own.
Disney Pixar continue to raise the bar and Zootropolis goes straight into the next update of our Top Family Films of all time. Sheer joy.
(reviewed by Ezra, age 10)
Bite size Review: ‘A bunny called Hopps joins the police in Zootropolis and she’s put on parking duty. But when 12 predators go missing, an otter asks Hopps to help find her husband (Emmett). The Chief doesn’t want Hopps to go on a mission, but he gives her 48 hours to find the missing otter. She meets a fox called Nick who she finds suspicious at first, but he winds up helping her solve the case.’
Memorable Moment: ‘When they find out why the animals have gone savage’ – Ezra. ‘When the police boss was playing a video game and pretending not to. It was funny.’ – Jed
Rating: ‘5 stars’
Age Guidance: ‘4 and above, because some scenes may be a bit frightening for younger ones’
Message: ‘You can be anything you want to be.’ – Ezra
Zootropolis is showing at cinemas across the UK
Find more Family Film screenings in our Easter in London 2016 guide