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Zootopia - Film Review

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Published April 11th 2016
All that Glitters isn't Utopia
Disney animations have come a long way from sketches of Mickey and Minnie prancing around to movies like Big Hero 6, Inside Out and now Zootopia. Who ever thought that cartoons will one day beat human characters at the box office in opening weekend earnings. To say the least, animations are also getting spectacularly better by the day. Zootopia, which is both visually stunning and the highest grosser of 2016 till now, is a comedy targeting not only children but also us adults.

Zootopia Poster ( Walt Disney Animation Studios)

Directors Byron Howard and Rich Moore have done a commendable job in bringing to life the brilliant screenplay by Jared Bush and Phil Johnston. The animation (especially of the lead character) is so perfect that one gets a real perception of the softness of a rabbit's fur and paw. Through all this sweet cuteness, the movie does not refrain from pointing a strong finger at various vices plaguing modern society.

Citizens of Zootopia (image from

Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) is more than a normal bunny from BunnyBurrow (it is funny to see how fast the population meter at the station counts up to keep tab of the ever expanding rabbit community). She is smart, ebullient and brave as a lion. Aspiring to be the first rabbit police officer of Zootopia, Judy resists her parents' fears and tackles all hurdles at the Police Academy to graduate at the top of her class. Brimming with confidence, a starry-eyed Judy arrives in the glamorous and glittering city of Zootopia to join her first post.

Judy Hopps ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Judy's Parents ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Life is easy in Zootopia. There is unity in the diversity of preys and predators. But all is not as it appears. Judy's dreams are soon foiled when she is assigned parking duty by police Chief Bogo (Idris Elba) while her colleagues are tasked with missing person cases. Prejudices, reservations, ill motives and hustles thrive under the overlying blanket of harmony.

The Police Chief ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

The Mayor ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Hopps in Action ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Undeterred by the setback, Judy starts attending to her job with renewed determination. One day, while doing her rounds she witnesses a fox named Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) and his cute son being discriminated at an ice-cream parlor. Eager to lend her services, she helps them out. To her dismay, she later discovers that they are, in truth, conmen. She confronts the fox but is derided by him. Judy returns home disappointed. Thereafter, frustrations start piling up, until the day when she is asked for help by a disgruntled pig who has been robbed. Judy is quick in her pursuit of the thief and succeeds in catching the weasel. But rather than accolades, what awaits her is Chief Bogo's wrath. Fortunately, Mrs Otterton pushes her way through to the Chief's office pleading with him to find her missing husband. To Bogo's displeasure, an empathetic Judy assures to help her. His irritation shoots beyond bounds when Assistant Mayor Bellwether (Jenny Slate) comes in applauding Judy and immediately updates Mayor Lionheart (J.K. Simmons) of the new development.

Walt Disney Animation Studios

Shuffling through the case file, Judy finds nothing except a single page with scarce information. But our witty rabbit cop, confronted by a 48 hours deadline from the Chief, finds a lead in the photograph of the disappeared Mr. Otterton. Cunning Nick is cleverly roped in by Judy through tax evasion scare. Unearthed by the duo is a mess of twists and revelations. Misunderstandings lead to mistakes. Friendship blooms and realizations dawn. Goodness is matched against its age old enemy, Evil. And as a Disney norm, Goodness finally triumphs and Truth prevails.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

The movie is targeted at a wider audience rather than just kids. The fun involved in various scenes is more of intended pun to awaken awareness in adults. I couldn't help laughing when a disheartened Judy peels the cover picturing three thick fleshy carrots on a ready-to-eat meal box to find a single, small, sorry baby carrot lying inside. On multiple occasions, the viewers' attention is also drawn towards stereotypical comments in disguised references.

Prey and Predators Rock Together ( Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

No doubt animations are getting better by leaps and bounds, but are we supposed to just marvel at the skills of the animators or should we be acting on the messages they convey?

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Your Comment
This is a great movie. I took my daughter and my 2 year old granddaughter. It was Jazmin's first time at the movies. It was a good movie with great themes. It was a bit scary at times. Great review of a fun movie.
by CassandraJoy (score: 3|1021) 1570 days ago
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