By Nirupa Mohan Ceylon Today Features
The newest animated action adventure film by Walt Disney Animation Studios and Walt Disney Pictures, released in cinemas recently with massive financial success and exceptional viewer ratings. Ratings on Rotten Tomatoes leapt high up, with a whopping 99%, while IMDb ratings followed close behind with 8.4/10 and Metacritic displayed a high 78%.
This might just be the biggest animated film this year, earning 73.7 million in North America on its opening weekend, breaking Frozen's December 2013 opening box office record of 67.3 million. Though Disney didn't release the films budget, Zootopia has reached a worldwide total of 233.9 million dollars, which is sure to have passed far beyond any cost they would have had in making this 108 minute 3D computer-animated movie.
The delightful movie centres around Judy Hopps (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin), an ambitious young bunny, whose dream is to be a cop, against all odds. She becomes the first bunny on the police force but that's when the story really begins. Though this is a children's movie with lovable characters, the plot has enough drama for anyone regardless of their age. The plot follows stereotypes who judge her as a small bunny even in the force, leaving her writing parking tickets. Without giving up, she focuses on being the best and proving that she can be as good as anyone else.
For kids, it's like a heartfelt message to not give up, and they might just feel a bit of sympathy for this young bunny-cop. At the same time, the film has received praise from women's groups and feminists who believe that women are victims of prejudice in society and at times at work; this is especially seen since Judy is treated like she can't do any real police work. The movie is ambitious from the start and becomes an adventure when there is a missing-mammal epidemic in Zootopia and Judy meets a fox con-artist. This cop-con team working together is both funny and entertaining, yet moving and clever, turning the movie into a detective style plot, as they uncover the truth and the politics behind the missing mammal case. It starts as a conventional film but turns controversial.
Keeping in mind that Zootopia is a city where all animals live together peacefully but 90% are prey and only 10% are predators, so does it become a predator versus prey problem? It makes you wonder, but the movie sends a strong message that discrimination and stereotyping is wrong and predators and prey can coexist.
Disney's adorable feel good animated film, Zootopia, is a proven creative success. Especially with its clear message, that you can be whoever you want to be, never give up on what you believe in and that communities are happier together working as a team, without judging each other regardless of who they are.