Clever, thought-provoking, and strangely riveting describes the movie Zootopia. It is fast paced and enthralling for any age group. Audiences go into the theater expecting yet another feel-good Disney animation (Frozen, Cinderella, Snow White) and are met with a well thought out production. There is nothing shy about this movie, it overtly reveals its true colors– taking a stand against stereotypes. Because it is still a kids movie it does so under thick layers of innocent humor and action-style thrilling scenes. The audience is immediately swept away by the adorable animations, of course disney chooses to star a cute little bunny with captivating purple eyes– a rare find indeed. A cunning Judy Hopps (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin) quite literally climbs to the top of her class with a single dream in mind–becoming a cop. This idea of hard work being the only way to reach your goals is something new for disney and it goes against its original motto of “wishing upon a star” instead it preaches an existentialist lesson of taking matters into your own hands. There is no question that this young bunny earned her way into the heart of the metropolis–Zootopia. We are swept away by the beautiful futuristic city and can’t help but fall in love with Giselle’s (Shakira’s) new song featured in the movie appropriately called “Try Everything.”
It is not a discouraging movie, but it does expose the ugly truth. While the audience is thrilled with Judy Hopps and her supposed “success story,”reaching the city proves be a slap in the face. She is reduced to a “token bunny” by the chief of the police Bogo an intimidating rhinoceros (Idris Elba) and forced to retire to meter maid duty. She quickly meets con man or fox Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman)– Despite his evident moral corruption he grows a soft spot for the young bunny–much like the rest of the audience by now. Rooting for the heroin in this film comes naturally, however the same cannot be said about the sly fox. Yet as the movie develops the audience begins to realise that the flaws exhibited by Nick Wilde have been caused by deep rooted prejudice. Much like a Russian nesting doll this movie is comprised of layers, as it progresses we soon uncover the truth behind a crumbling facade. While Zootopia is a “melting pot” for predators and prey who coexist in “harmony” we soon realise that this Russian nesting doll has an ugly core. The end reveal is one too meaningful to spoil–however it is worth noting that it is thought-provoking. On top of critical social commentary on stereotypes it also hints at the relationship between nature vs nurture, can a predator really change its aggressive ways?
Even without the depth the directors intended the movie is arguably the best movie disney has ever produced. It adds comedy to move the story line across seen when including sloths working at the DMV or a hilarious Mr. Big who ends up being an arctic shrew aka (a feared crime lord). The scenes are captivating, funny, energetic, and ridiculously good–it’s time to buy a ticket now.