Friday, August 3, 2012

"The Secret World of Arrietty" Review

    Little people live in my house in steal my stuff. Can I get an animated movie? This is The Secret World of Arrietty!

    I am not that familiar with Studio Ghibli films. I know, as a film critic I should have seen all of their movies, because, after all, they are famous for making so of the greatest animated film of all time. So maybe, The Secret World of Arrietty wasn't the greatest introduction to their films. It's not that the film is bad, it's just that it isn't really... there.
    The film follows Arrietty (Bridgit Mendler), of course, who is a member of a family that is part of a group called "The Borrowers". They're little people who will that only what they need to survive from humans and must never be seen by them. So, after Arrietty gets seen by human Shawn (David Henrie), her mother Homily (Amy Poehler) and father Pod (Will Arnett) begin to pack up and leave their home, away from the danger of humans and live with their fellow Borrowers, including Spiller (Moises Arias). However, when the housekeeper Hara (Carol Burnett) finds out about The Borrowers, she do anything she can to catch them.

Run! The black walls are closing in!
    The Secret World of Arrietty is a visually stunning film. The only other film released this year (Animated-wise) that is this spectacular was The Pirates! Band of Misfits, mostly because that was all handle made. This film is a better example of why 2D animation is still more beautiful than CG animation. And I like CG animation. The other thing is that the characters are great. They are immensely likable and I would pay to see them in another film, though sometimes the acting could be a little hammy.
    But then, there are some major problems with the film. For one, Shawn is a terrible character. Even though he has some sort of mysterious heart condition, did he really need to talk that quietly? Or be this shockingly bland and uninteresting? And Hara. She never really explains why she's so interesting in catching the Borrowers. There's mentionings that she trying to prove she's not crazy, but, they never said that any other character though she was crazy so... Plus, the story has flaws. It's one of those stories. You know the ones. Where it never feels like anything that important is happening. Like the film missed it's cue to ramp up the story and the drama. The film continues on with it's light pace and without much real intensity.

Just... look at that.
    Okay, so this isn't a great movie. It has a bad villain, one of the worst characters I can remember seeing in a long time and a slow, sleepy pace with not a lot of drama. But it's still beautifully animated and the rest of the characters are very relatable. You know, for being 4 inches tall. This is defenately worth at least renting, especially if you have a family with kids in it. The Secret World of Arrietty gets 4 stars out of 6.

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