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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Three More Of My Favorite Animated Movies

It's no secret that I love animated films.  I did a post a little while back mini-reviewing five of my favorite animated movies, as well as doing full reviews of both Tangled and Frozen.  Since my mini-reviews, I've watched three more animated movies (actually, I've watched more than that, but some of them don't deserve a review - like Ice Age 4) that I love, so I'll be reviewing those today.  I'm sure that when I started this blog, I wouldn't have dreamed of reviewing animated movies (since it was strictly period drama), but I've broadened out since then and I don't think animated films are just for little kids.  My mom loves Up and likes Despicable Me and, of course, I like pretty much every animated movie I watch.  So there.


Thanks for the adventure- now go have a new one! "Up" has the best message about grief/loss for people of all ages

Up is pretty much the animated film to end all animated films.  Everyone, it seems, has seen it and loved it, and after watching the 'Married Life' montage, I knew I had to too.  It's an amazing film, with much more heart than is usually seen in animated films (and a unique take on marriage for this day and age).  The music is beautiful (I believe the film won an Oscar for Best Original Score - totally deserved it).   Let's see...the characters.  I'm not sure I have a favorite character.  They were all pretty much the same in my character rankings.  Carl was probably the best one, though.  The way his priorities shift throughout the film is done well - in a subtle way, but there nonetheless.

Russell was another favorite character (he's probably my top favorite, actually).  He certainly earned his 'assisting the elderly badge' (or, the Ellie it bad that I teared up just a little bit typing that?).  Charles Muntz/his dogs were creepy (except for Dug, of course).  This film was definitely gorgeous in terms of cinematography...the jungle, Paradise Falls itself, the balloons - I loved all of it.  It was more of a tearjerker than I thought it would be.  I knew the montage was sad, but the adventure book scene was even more tearjerking, in a way.  And, of course, the Ellie pin scene.  Happy tears all around.

Despicable Me

Despicable me 1 (2010) en 2 (2013)

The first time I watched this film, I laughed so hard.  Harder then I've ever laughed for any other film (with perhaps the exception of the animated Robin Hood).  The minions are hilarious, and pretty much everyone has funny moments.  Gru, Vector, Gru's mom, and Agnes, Edith, and Margo.  After watching it about five times, my family now has an inexhaustible supply of quotes to go to for practically any situation.  Seriously, a day can't go by without someone quoting something from DM.  In the appropriate tone/accent, of course.

Anyway...I really love the music in this, but it's extremely rare.  You can't find it on Youtube, or any other site (I don't even think the CD is for sale anymore), but having watched the film so many times, I can still hear it in my head.  The characters are pretty much the best part in the film (after the minions).  I love Gru's character change (please tell me I'm not the only one who gets a lump in their throat when he reads his book to the girls...) but my favorite character would be Vector.  "Oh, yeah!"  I know he's the villain, but he's so funny and arrogant and just...yeah.  I like him.  A lot.  Now, I didn't care much for the sequel.  It was funny and all that, but it wasn't as sharp as the first one, if you know what I mean.  Gru being a villain can't be beat by him turning good and making jams instead of rockets.  So the first film is definitely my favorite.


Epic Black and White

This is the animated film I've seen most recently and it's one of my new favorites.  When I started it, I thought from how the plot was going that it was going to be one of those 'my mom died so now I'm an angsty teenager' things, but MK (Mary Katherine) was actually really good about it all (she was even working through the Five Stages of Grief on her own).  Now, I have to admit that the filmmakers had to be pretty sure about their movie to name it Epic because what if it had turned out to be...not so epic?  But it was.  One reason I think I liked it so much was the characters (I've said it before, and I'll say it again - good characters are what makes me love a book or movie so much).  There was MK, of course.  She was great.  And Nod (who reminded me of Flynn Ryder - face, voice, and actions).  But the character I really loved was Ronin.  He was amazing.  Even though we didn't get to see much of their relationship, he and Queen Tara (who, by the way, was epic [pun intended]) are my new OTP (I know it means 'one true pairing', but I have several of them).

This is the kind of film that begs for a prequel.  How did Ronin know Nod's father and why did they go to the Boggan headquarters together?  And what was Queen Tara and Ronin's relationship like as kids?  Anyway...the Boggans were creeepy (especially their leader, Mandrake - one thing I liked about him as villain, was that he was a little bit human with how he loved his son.  I like that kind of thing) and even though the battles were epic (there's that word again...) in the fullest sense of the word, they were also pretty intense (I wouldn't recommend this film for children under ten).  But, yeah, it's really good.  The animation is beautiful (all the greens!), the music is good (though not really outstanding), and there are a couple of minor character who keep the whole thing from being too serious.  Highly recommended.



Kiri Liz said...

Up and Epic are definitely favorites of mine as well!! And I have to say this... in the defence of Epic... it's waaaaaay more epic than the book! I read the children's book by William Joyce, I think it was, and it's totally in every way NOT EPIC! The movie is epic. Okay, I'm done.

Eva said...

Sometimes the movie just happens to be better than the book - very rare, but it happens :)

Lydia said...

Love DM and Epic. But I am not a fan of Up. Like at all. I LOVE ronin too! He and the queen are also one of my many OTP'S :)

Maribeth B said...

Oooh, I hadn't ever thought about an Epic prequel, but that would be awesome! Up is definitely one of my favorite Pixar movies, too, though I don't know if it's my ultimate favorite. I really love Toy Story 3...

Just wanted to let you know, too, that I tagged you at my blog!

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