by H. Thomas
‘The story of this film, while a slightly clichéd mixture of a quest and a coming-of-age movie, is a heart-warming one, and would be enjoyable for any family to watch.’
Director: Dan Scanlon
Cast: Tom Holland, Chris Pratt, Octavia Spencer & Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Synopsis: In a world that was once magical, but has evolved to be technological, two elven brothers, Ian and Barley, discover a source of magic in their home that could bring their late father back for one day, giving Ian a chance to meet him. Together, they embark on a quest, using Barley’s questionable historical knowledge from his favourite board game, to bring their father back properly and spend a day with him, learning a lot about each other and their history along the way.
Review: It’s very rare that a Disney film is disappointing, and, thankfully, this is not one of those times. The story of this film, while a slightly clichéd mixture of a quest and a coming-of-age movie, is a heart-warming one, and would be enjoyable for any family to watch. The mystical setting is beautifully created through Pixar animation, and the parallels of the fantastical world in the film and the world we live in are clever and comedic, such as replacing stray cats with stray unicorns, and pet dogs with dragons. However, it can be surprisingly stressful to watch – while all Disney films have moments where things go wrong in order to bring the film back up to a happily ever after, this film seems to have far too many inconveniences for the two brothers, and can make audiences wonder if there will actually be a happy ending for the characters. Despite this, it is all worth it in the end and creates a wonderful message of family values, even if it is a little stressful to get to it. Any Dungeons and Dragons players will appreciate the connections to that game and Barley’s game in the film, and how it ultimately helps the brothers on their quest. Overall, this film, while maybe not the most outstanding creation of Disney or Pixar, doesn’t disappoint and is well worth watching with family.
Onward is currently available on Disney + and was rated U by the BBFC.