November 16, 2014

Movie Review: Big Hero 6

For those of you who write reviews, whether professionally or just as a hobby, do you ever watch a movie, like it, want to write about it, but just can't? It happens to me from time to time. Sometimes I just give up and not write, other times I power through it and wind up with some really bad finished product (not that it is ever any good). The latest movie to strike me down with this is Big Hero 6. The first feature animated collaboration between Disney and Marvel is a wonderful success. No, it is not exactly groundbreaking, but it sure is a lot of fun. It's sense of adventure, comic timing, and general fun makes this trip to theater very worthwhile.

Now, the problem I am having is that while I really liked the movie and have zero qualms recommending it, I am having a difficult time coming up with the right words to write a review. So, instead of doing nothing or trying to force a traditional review out of my brain, I am just seeing where things take me.

Big Hero 6 was directed by Don Hall, who previously worked on the excellent Winnie the Pooh movie, and Chris Williams, who is probably best known for his work on Bolt. The two previously collaborated on the story and screenplay of The Emperor's New Groove. Here, the duo have collaborated on a what is essentially a superhero origin story, and while it is not a new formula, there is something that is a lot of fun about this thing.

It is the story of Hiro Hamada, a young robotics genius who wastes his time on illegal robot fighting. An invitation from his older brother to visit his college robotics lab changes everything. He gets excited about what he can do with his gifts and those he could work with. Plus, he gets to see his brother's project, a healthcare robot made of inflatable vinyl, Baymax. A marvel of modern tech, Baymax is a delightfully lovable creation.

Well, as these stories often go, tragedy strikes and Hiro is left to pick up the pieces as an explosion takes his brother's life. He teams with Baymax to solve the mystery of the explosion, and with the assistance of some new friends, a new hero is born.

The movie wants to be a lot of things, a hero origin story, a moralistic tale for kids, a look at dealing with loss, grief, and revenge, and it all works pretty well together. With the familiar hero origin formula, paired with a likable lead, and the fantastic Baymax, you have a movie that can appeal to just about anyone.

Big Hero 6 is flat out likable. It is fun, it is different than your usual animated fare. Baymax is a fantastic character, and it is one that you really don't want to miss out on. It is definitely familiar, but it is also well executed.

Highly Recommended.

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