About three months ago we went to the cinema and saw a trailer for Zootropolis. Both children were desperate to go and see it, so I made sure to keep an eye on the release date so that we could watch it. We were then contacted by the lovely people over at Disney and asked if we'd like to receive a goody bag of merchandise and visit our local cinema to see the film, obviously we jumped at the chance. The last Disney film we'd seen at the cinema was The Good Dinosaur, which we had all sobbed through, so I was prepared to feel emotional about this one!
Thankfully I didn't need to get my tissues out! Disney have been incredibly clever with this film. It's enjoyable for children, but there are so many political undertones which make it equally entertaining for adults to watch, albeit a little uncomfortable at times! The anthropomorphic slant means they can allude to elements of racism, fear, sexism, prejudice, the media and tolerance with ease. It also makes it easier to discuss with children how important it is not to judge people and how we should treat everyone the same, no matter what they look like or what their interests are.
The film is based around a bunny called Judy Hopps whose dream is to become the first ever bunny police officer. She follows her dreams and doesn't give up, even when her goal turns out not to be as rewarding as she had hoped. In spite of corruption at the highest level, Officer Hopps, proves, once she gets rid of some prejudices of her own, that she should be a police officer and that it is possible to make the world a better place.
There was one moment in the film when we all jumped, literally bottoms off seats jumping, possibly accompanied by a little scream! There were laugh out loud moments, including one where I laughed at a joke purely for adults and my children then looked at me rather strangely. There are nods to adult shows such as Breaking Bad which don't go unnoticed. The film doesn't drag at any point and keeps you hooked from start to finish. The sloths in the Department for Transport were a particular favourite of mine and the children's, although for very different reasons! If you've ever been stuck on hold to a call centre then you feel Officer Hopps' frustration.
The animation is absolutely incredible. So completely crisp and clear. Honestly, there are some moments when you forget you are watching an animated film.
I would highly recommend Zootropolis as a family film. It's rare you find a film which is successful in appealing to adults as well as children. It's inspirational and aspirational. The messages about fear dividing us are strong and very relevant currently. "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself". I may be being idealistic, but at the end of the film it emphasises that change starts with you, and it couldn't be more right!
The t-shirts my children are wearing are from the Disney Store, my son is wearing the fox t-shirt and my daughter is wearing a yellow t-shirt with many of the Zootropolis characters on it. as is the other merchandise we were sent. The carrot pen also records speech, which is pretty impressive. My daughter has taken the Judy Hopps soft toy to bed for the past couple of nights and has been playing police officers with her during the day. I would recommend having a look at the Disney Store's website to see their other film goodies.
Disclosure: We were provided with some Disney Zootropolis merchandise and vouchers to see the film at our local cinema for the purpose of review. This had no impact on my post, which is honest and fair.