One of my favourite categories at the Oscars is Best Animated Picture. It’s easily the most fun category because it’s all about which kids movie was best. This year there are five good nominees and I definitely enjoyed myself immensely getting to sit and watch these. I don’t have full reviews for all of these, so the explanations here for ranking will have to do! Trailers are linked for your viewing pleasure.
- Brave has Pixar’s first female lead and she’s a marvelous one. Princess Merida is brave and she’s a great archer. After breaking tradition and bringing chaos to the kingdom she has to use everything she can to fix a beastly curse. A story about changing your fate and accepting family, this movie was so amazing. I was laughing and crying along with all the characters. I felt so full of emotion by the end. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEHWDA_6e3M
- Pirates! Band of Misfits is a marvelous tale of the Pirate Captain trying to obtain the Pirate of the Year award and having the “most unexpectedly heartwarming adventure ever!” A great voice cast, wonderfully funny script, and predictable but very enjoyable fun this movie was lovely. Just what I needed for the night, I’m sure I’ll watch this again. It seems quite underrated, and the plot was a bit too predictable, so I’m not expecting a win for this one. I’ll be sure to keep this in my collection. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tqtcj20Z778
- Frankenweenie is Tim Burton’s latest movie. This movie was really cute. Vincent has a pet dog, Sparky who is tragically killed. While in science class one day he gets an idea to revive Sparky Frankenstein-style which has certain dangerous ramifications. There was lots about this movie that I recognized from previous Burtin films, specifically the windmill finale reminiscent of Sleepy Hollow. Burton’s last stop-motion The Corpse Bride had let me down, as had his latest attempt with Disney, Alice in Wonderland, so I was a little nervous about this one but I really enjoyed it. It felt like Burton and Disney had come together really cohesively. The most loving character of the movie is Sparky himself, he really brings out the emotions in this one! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cqI6hPra7c
- ParaNorman is the tale of eleven year old Norman who is labeled a freak by his town because he can speak to the dead. Although an unpopular opinion, I wasn’t too fond of this movie. If I had gone in with much expectation I would have been disappointed. My favourite moment of the movie was the offhanded comment about being gay. A gay character in a kids animated movie is so rare! I can’t remember a single time when that has happened up until now. The trailers consisted of most of the funny bits of the entire movie. Although it was probably more meaningful than Pirates! it definitely wasn’t as fun. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NbtltCSpcU
- Wreck It Ralph was something I expected to really enjoy but didn’t. It was a cool idea but executed poorly. Wreck it Ralph is a bad guy in his arcade game who no longer wants to be a bad guy but his quest starts to ruin the whole arcade. I think I laughed three times in this movie. There were a lot of cheesy kids jokes (did I really need five jokes about heroes ‘duty’) and no jokes catering to adults (saying ‘fun’ instead of ‘f*ck’ is not a joke catering to adults). I guess my dislike of Sarah Silverman wouldn’t help, especially with an even more annoying voice than usual. On the plus side, John C Reilly and Jane Lynch were much more fun to listen to and they brought charm if not humour to their characters.
These are in order of my personal preferences. Although I have Pirates second, I don’t expect it would come second in votes. For chances of winning, Frankenweenie probably is second best.