Epic is about a teenage girl who finds herself caught in the middle of a massive battle between good and evil when she is brought to the world of the Leafmen, an elite band of tiny warriors sworn to protect the forest from the Boggans, a ghoulish army bent on destroying it.
M.K. (played by Amanda Seyfried) tries reconnect with her estranged father, the quirky, absent-minded and reclusive Professor Bomba (Jason Sudeikis), who devotes his life to seeking out a hidden miniature civilization living in the woods. M.K. is naturally worried about her dad’s sanity, but when Tara (Beyoncé Knowles), Queen of the Leafmen–and life of the forest itself–comes under attack while choosing a new heir (in the form of a flower pod) M.K. becomes shrunken by Tara’s magic and enlisted to help the Leafmen save their world, and make sure the Boggans and their ruler Mandrake don’t tip the scales in favour of rot and ruin. M.K. gets helps from Ronin, the commander of the Leafmen (Colin Farrell), Nod, a rebellious young Leafman in Ronin’s care (Josh Hutcherson), Mub and Grub (Aziz Ansari, Chris O’Dowd), a slug and snail duo charged with protecting the heir-pod, and Nim Galuu (Steven Tyler), a charismatic, charming, and wise old caterpillar. Together they must bring the pod to the safety of Moonhaven, the Kingdom of the Leafmen, before the full moon.
Blue Sky Studios, director Chris Wedge and the creators of Ice Age Trilogy and Rio bring all their animation chops to Epic , resulting in their most visually satisfying film yet. The forest the characters live in feels rich, full and textured. But while the visuals make Epic a real pleasure to watch there isn’t much groundbreaking material in the story itself, with a great deal of familiar territory being covered here. While the dialogue is funny and intelligent and the characters likeable, it’s a little bit predictable when hummingbirds, flowers and tiny but beautiful humanoid beings equals Good, while bats, crows, underground rodents equal Evil, and you never really doubt who’s going to win in the end.
Mandrake, the evil lord of decay (played by Christoph Waltz) is a classic dark lord type, dangerous because everything he touches with his staff dies instantly. And although his vocal stylings aren’t always successful in making Mandrake seem threatening, Waltz does bring a performance that makes him a little more unique among the cartoon rogues’ gallery. M.K. isn’t a warrior-type but thankfully she’s still scrappy and never falls into the damsel-in-distress stereotype. Mub and Grub are the obvious comic relief, but everybody, even the more dower characters like Ronin get to show their funny side. What also makes this film unique from others like it is how the conflict comes from within this microcosmic universe, and doesn’t get too preachy with any themes of humans versus the natural world (see: Avatar , Fern Gully: The Last Rainforest ); that worldview is assumed from the get-go.
Is Epic opening-weekend worthy?
You can definitely wait until after opening weekend to catch this one. But even though there are moments when you might feel like you’ve seen this movie before, the 3-D does compliment the visuals without being distracting, and its adventure, action and humour are enough to make it worth taking the trip to the theatre with your kids (or your significant other/friends/self).
Epic Production Gallery
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