UK Release Date: 27th January 2017
Runtime: 108 minutes
Director: Garth Jennings
Writer: Garth Jennings
Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Taron Egerton, Reese Witherspoon, Scarlett Johansson, Seth MacFarlane, John C Reilly, Tori Kelly, Peter Serafinowicz, Nick Offerman, Nick Kroll, Jennifer Saunders, Jennifer Hudson
Synopsis: To save his threatened club, a koala devises a singing competition to find the best undiscovered talent.
In an animation landscape that sees Pixar fading and trying to do a bizarre, dark reboot of a franchise about cars and Disney surpassing its own high standards to make sophisticated movies which poke fun at its own cliches, Illumination Entertainment is here to remind us that sometimes, movies can just be fun.
With that in mind, the studio behind the Minion memes your mum shares on Facebook – and some movies starring them as well – has brought us Sing. The film is an inoffensive animal romp that puts its eggs all in the ‘pop songs you know basket’ and sees you leaving the cinema humming with mild merriment.
Written and directed by Garth Jennings, who made The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Son of Rambow, Sing follows the story of Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), a theatre-owning koala who wants to revive the fortunes of his failing business. To do this, he holds a singing competition and brings together assorted animals from across the city to compete. These animals are voiced by a galaxy of A-listers, including Scarlett Johansson, Taron Egerton and Reese Witherspoon.
Despite the characters being very thinly drawn, Sing is very good fun. It sparkles the most when the characters are singing songs from start to finish and you can put to one side the borderline oppressive soundtrack of 80-90,000 pop songs, seemingly being skipped through by a restless teenager at a party.
The fact they are animals is not something that enhances the plot at all, aside from a few visual gags and one hilarious scene at a car wash. If you’re coming for a new Zootropolis, you will be disappointed. This film doesn’t even come close to the depth of Pixar’s film about a society that entirely features animals.
At its core, though, Sing is a celebration of talent, of dreams and individuality. Perhaps most importantly, though, it’s also a celebration of some genuinely great pop music.
Pop or Poop?
The animated landscape is certainly crowded right now and Garth Jennings doesn’t break any new ground with his amiable animated musical. However, Sing is a joyful celebration of pop music delivered through a tale of cute animals singing their furry hearts out. It’s funny, warm and proof that not every animated film has to be a deep allegory to work its magic.
Do you agree with my review? Let me know in the comments section.