Movie Review: Onward - Makes you laugh and cry

Ronita TorcatoUpdated: Saturday, March 07, 2020, 01:52 AM IST
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Film: Onward

Cast (Voices): Tom Holland, Chris Pratt, Octavia Spencer, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Mel Rodriguez, Ali Wong, George Psarras, John Ratzenberger, Lena Waithe, Tracey Ullman, Kyle Bomheimer

Director: Dan Scanlon

Rating: ****

Imagine a world in which elves, trolls, centaur cops, Minotaur chefs, feral unicorns, goonda pixies, lesbian cyclops and other fairy folk live happily together. Zoom into the home of two elf brothers, introvert, lonely Ian (voiced by Tom Holland) and exuberant older sibling Barley (Chris Pratt) Light foot whose favourite game is Legends of Yore which he insists is representation of life before science and technology kayoed magic.

On his birthday, Ian is gifted a magic staff which can bring back their long-deceased dad Wilden for a day. How could they say no, specially when Ian had never known his dad? But things go awry with the magic incantation and morbidly, only the bottom half of dad materialises. Now, the brothers must leave their doting mother Laurel (Julia Dreyfus) and pet dragon behind and proceed on an epic quest to complete the spell.

Naturally, they find themselves in dangerous situations with monsters and other fairy folk like angry biker-pixies who have forgotten how to fly! Meanwhile, the Minotaur Manticore (Octavia Spencer) vandalises her own restaurant and joins Laurel in hot pursuit of Ian and Barley who are already being chased by centaur cop Colt Bronco (Mel Rodriguez).

Lots of adeptly orchestrated adventures later, the brothers learn to to truly connect with each other and with their true selves. There’s quite a bit of fun before the climactic scene which is sad and moving.

All in all, Onward shows young viewers the importance of being true to yourself and coping with loss and grief. It also underlines themes of family, brotherhood, teamwork, courage, faith, perseverance, and selflessness. Needless to say, the voice cast is terrific; Spencer and Pratt in particular are in top form.

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