Excellent seafaring adventure, kind of in the same tonal vein as How To Train Your Dragon.
Animation, performances and production design are all top-class, with great action and colourful creatures for the kids, and elements of historical revisionism and imperialist undertones for the adults.
Would be genuinely surprised if this didn’t turn into Netflix’s flagship animated film franchise, since there’s plenty of room to grow from here.
Look, it’s missing a bit of the punch and slickness of editing and action that made the anime series so memorable, but the cast is great, the soundtrack bops and it’s mostly a fun, silly scifi romp.
Not without its criticisms, however. The extension of the villain’s story does little to establish him as a credible threat, and some of the VFX look very unfinished. Action can be kind of stitled, which is a shame because it has glimmers of real creativity and excellence that shine through and unfortunately serve to highlight the flaws.
But mostly the characterisations are fun, albiet slightly different takes to the original. If you want slavish dedication to the source material, just rewatch the anime. The prime three (John Cho, Daniella Pineda and Mustafa Shakir) are all totally on point for this interpretation.
My main disappointment was that the show didn’t adhere to the brilliant sylisation of the promotional segments, or at least leaned harder into some kind of hyper-realism to make it pop. That could have been truly special.
If you’re willing to take this on its own terms, it’s a totally serviceable space action adventure.
A high water mark for animation, bringing fantastic art design and execution to a rich and detailed fantasy world.
From my understanding, knowledge of League of Legends (the game franchise this is based on) is unnecessary, and it certainly seems interested in making itself both accessible and engaging.
Action is kinetic and complimented by exceptional VFX work. Characters are complex, and their relationships shift and change to keep you wondering who will survive, ally, betray. It’s a big cast, but it’s very well balanced, even when it occasionally feels like it’s spreading itself thin across too many threads.
Plenty has already been said about the stunning visual style, and it’s all warranted. Better though, the story feels like it barely scratching the surface of a huge world.
Already renewed for a second season, and incredibly promising.
A colourful celebration of Latin American music, soundtracked by and starring Lin Manuel Miranda as the titular kinkajou.
Skews to a younger crowd, with bright colours and high antics. Some of the designs are honestly pretty ugly but the story has heart and the songs are all original Mirandas, including some great performances from Gloria Estefan.
Good for the kids, but lacking that extra layer of depth that makes an animated film truly great and memorable.
Possibly the lightest, summeriest Pixar film to date — one that’s thankfully not interested in heavy emotional subject matter but would rather just present a nice, simple story and it delivers a delight.
Two young sea monsters sneak up on land to win a triathalon so they can buy a Vespa. Friendships are formed, hijinx ensue.
The visuals take on a sort of extremely advanced claymation quality, complimented by saturated colours and an expressive animation style.
Charm in spades, it’s a warm and easy film that unfortunately might end up overlooked due to skipping a theatrical release in favour of jumping straight to Disney+.
Solid family adventure film with the obligatory gorgeous Disney Animated visuals.
At what point do we stop commenting on how pretty each new one is, given that the next one will inevitably somehow manage to surpass it? Nonetheless, design aesthetics are fantastic here, and unique among their animated collection.
It’s a Disney princess film with a SouthEast Asian setting, no love interests and a vaguely post-apocalyptic bent.
Potentially questionable moral for young children about trusting untrustworthy people, but overall it’s pretty great.