ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Zootopia: movie review

Updated on March 13, 2016
popcollin profile image

Collin's been a movie critic since 2009. In real life he works in marketing and is also a novelist ("Good Riddance" published in Oct 2015).

Zootopia
Zootopia | Source

Zootopia is on a mission. From its opening frames, straight through to the Shakira-tastic closing credits, it seems to have only one true purpose-- to tell everyone that stereotypes are bad and can’t we all just get along?

It’s an honorable idea, but there’s something about it just getting beat into your head ad nauseum that takes away some of the magic of the movie. And that’s not even taking to account the fact that Zootopia actually goes against its own message on more than one occasion.

Don’t misunderstand-- the film is cute, funny, and whimsical, and the voice cast is about as good as ever. And certainly there are worse messages to convey-- Disney does have its heart in the right (and timely) place.

Zootopia revolves around Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin), an idealistic young bunny who wants to break through the glass (or rabbit) ceiling and become the first cop of her kind. Her brutish boss, Chief Bogo (Idris Elba), is none-too-pleased to have her on board, so he gives her 48 hours to prove herself by solving a nearly impossible case-- find an otter who’s gone missing, or resign.

Hopps quickly recruits (via blackmail) con artist Nick Wilde, a sly fox voiced with perfect greasiness by Jason Bateman. They team up and run from one corner (tundra) of Zootopia to the other (rainforest).

Along the way there is no shortage of brilliant Disney moments, including Hopps’ visit to a nudist colony (where no animal wears even a stitch of clothing) to a Godfather-like bit that finds Hopps and Nick just seconds away from sleeping with the fishes.

There’s never any doubt, of course, about Hopps and Nick accomplishing their mission, and it also gets telegraphed early and often exactly how they’ll do it, but the real issue comes with the movie not even listening to itself.

Disney has never really worried about being too heavy-handed with his mantras, but Zootopia takes it to arguably a whole new level. For all its preaching about accepting all animals and being tolerant and inclusive, there sure are a lot of jokes about animal stereotypes-- from slow-as-molasses sloths to wolves forced to drop what they’re doing and howl at the moon to Judy herself poking fun at her species’ propensity for procreation. It all just seems a bit odd.

The director trifecta of Byron Howard (Tangled), Rich Moore (Wreck-It Ralph), and first-timer Jared Bush do manage to put together a brisk film full of brilliant art and colorful characters, and there’s plenty to look at and laugh at along the way-- for both kids and their parents.

Conclusion

The fact that Zootopia’s story is credited to not one but seven different people, however, tells you all you need to know. It’s haphazard in some places and trips on itself in others. The end product is perfectly fine and dandy, but it pales against Disney’s last two outings-- Frozen and Big Hero 6. The kids won’t care, obviously; surely they will want to re-watch it again and again-- which is great, as long as they get the (right) message loud and clear.

Rating

3.5/5 stars

Worth the 3D glasses?

Not especially-- there were only a couple swoopy, 3D-worthy moments. The visuals are solid enough on their own that you're safe just going for the basic 2D option. Give the bridge of your nose a day off for this one.

'Zootopia' dinner

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)