Category: Family/Kids

Welcome to the Jam!  NBA champion and global icon LeBron James goes on an epic adventure alongside timeless Tune Bugs Bunny with the animated/live-action event “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” from director Malcolm D. Lee and an innovative filmmaking team including Ryan Coogler and Maverick Carter

This transformational journey is a manic mashup of two worlds that reveals just how far some parents will go to connect with their kids. When LeBron and his young son Dom are trapped in a digital space by a rogue A.I., LeBron must get them home safe by leading Bugs, Lola Bunny and the whole gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes to victory over the A.I.’s digitized champions on the court: a powered-up roster of professional basketball stars as you’ve never seen them before.  It’s Tunes versus Goons in the highest-stakes challenge of his life, that will redefine LeBron’s bond with his son and shine a light on the power of being yourself. The ready-for-action Tunes destroy convention, supercharge their unique talents and surprise even “King” James by playing the game their own way.

Summary:  A chaotic battle ensues between Jerry Mouse, who has taken refuge in the Royal Gate Hotel, and Tom Cat, who is hired to drive him away before the day of a big wedding arrives.

Year: 2021

Cinema Release Dates: 1st April 2021 (Australia), 26th February 2021 (USA)

VOD Release Dates: 25th March 2021 (USA)

Country: UK, USA

Director: Tim Story

Screenwriter: Kevin Costello

Cast: Janis Ahern (Mrs. Jacobson), Daniel Adegboyega (Gavin the Doorman), Camilla Arfwedson (Linda Perrybottom), Jordan Bolger (Cameron), Joe Buck (himself), Bobby Cannavale (Spike (voice)), Ajay Chhabra (Mr Mehta), Christina Chong (Lola), Somi De Souza (Mrs Mehta), Rob Delaney (Mr. Dubros), Eleanor Fanyinka (Sadie (voice)), Patsy Ferran (Joy The Bell Girl), Spank Horton (Ash (voice)), Nicky Jam (Butch (voice)), Ken Jeong (Chef Jackie), Colin Jost (Ben), Edward Judge (Leo The Sous Chef), Lil Rel Howery (Angel/Devil (voice)), Na’im Lynn (Meathead (voice)), Chloe Grace Moretz (Kayla), Michael Pena (Terrence), Patrick Poletti (Mr. Jacobson Snr.), Harry Ratchford (Topsy (voice)), Bernardo Santos (Aaron Merritt), Pallavi Sharda (Preeta), Joey Wells (Lightning (voice))

Running Time: 101 mins

Classification: G (Australia), PG (UK), PG (USA)

OUR TOM AND JERRY REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Tom And Jerry Review:

When I first heard that a new Tom & Jerry movie was on the way, my first thought was – how could this possibly work? Yes the mischievous mouse and cat have been entertaining audiences for over 70 years, but I have come to realise over recent years that what the new generation finds funny compared to what I found funny as a child 30 years ago is vastly different. So, I’ll be completely honest – I thought the chances of this being a Tom & Jerry film that would appeal to all ages was next to zero.

But I am happy to say that I am going to have to eat my words with this one because director/screenwriter Tim Story (Fantastic Four) has created a world for Tom and Jerry that I am sure even their creators, William Hanna and Joseph Barbera would be very proud of.

The key thing to making Story’s version of Tom & Jerry work is that he has made it universal and timeless. As usual Tom chases Jerry right around the city and Jerry finds himself moving into the Royal Gate Hotel just as the world’s most popular couple, Preeta (Pallavi Sharada – Lion) and Ben (Colin JostHow To Be Single), have arrived at the Hotel in preparation for their wedding.

The approaching wedding has the Hotel’s Events Manager, Terence (Michael Pena – Ant-Man), completely stressed out and he not impressed when his boss, Mr Dubros (Rob Delaney – Deadpool 2), hires the very inexperienced Kayla (Chloe Grace Moretz – Kick-Ass) to help him out.

Adding to Terence’s stress is the fact that suddenly he has the crazy pair of Tom and Jerry running around the hotel and fighting at every opportunity, just when he wants everything to be perfect. Despite him predicting it will end in disaster he can only sit back and watch as Kayla drums up a plan to hire Tom to try and capture Jerry.

There is a tonne of fun and comedy throughout the film but what impressed me the most was how Tim Story managed to mix old with new. The old school animation that brings Tom, Jerry and a cast of other animals including the famous bulldog Spike (Bobby Cannavale – Blue Jasmine), to life is mixed well with the modern day shots – so well in fact that the only film I think I ever seen that has such a seamless animation and real life mix is Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Likewise the story itself. This is a timeless tale, the events that happen at the Hotel could easily have happened in the 1930s and that is one of the reasons why the characters of Tom and Jerry slip so well into this ‘new world’. Even the hotel itself looks like it has been plucked from a 1930s film noir flick so again lends itself to the world of Tom and Jerry perfectly.

As a storyteller Story also comes to the fore with his characters. Dubros and Terence are perfectly over-acted and enhanced while the smart Kayla is written as a strong and caring lead that the audience quickly wants to support. Story has even written Preeta and Ben in such a way that they are likable, move the story along but never over-stay their welcome or over-shadow the characters that are the centre-piece to the plot. The only character I feel Story should have done more with was Chef Jackie who is seriously under-used especially given that he has played by comedic genius Ken Jeong (Community) but still does very little to move the story along.

That is the only blemish though when it comes to the acting. Moretz quickly shows the audience that she can add comedy to the list of things that she excels while Pena again does what he did in Dora The Explorer and brings his A-Game to a family film. It probably doesn’t look like it on paper but Moretz and Pena are the perfect comedy duo here are one of the reasons why the film works so well.

Tom & Jerry goes very close to being the perfect family film – funny throughout and sensitive when it needs to be this is the kind of film that will be loved by any generation of the family. For kids it is something new and fresh and for Mum and Dad (and even Grandpa and Grandma) this is a trip down memory lane with a modern twist. I still can’t believe I am saying this but you will find very few films as enjoyable as Tom & Jerry this year.

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Kyle McGraths’ Tom And Jerry Review:

Kyle’s Rating Out Of 5:

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

Tom and Jerry (2021) on IMDb

Other Subculture Tom And Jerry Reviews:

Nil

Trailer:

An epic adventure about a headstrong girl longing for a place to belong who discovers a kindred spirit when her life intersects with a wild horse, Spirit Untamed is the next chapter in the beloved story from DreamWorks Animation.

Lucky Prescott (Isabela Merced, Dora and the Lost City of Gold) never really knew her late mother, Milagro Navarro (Eiza González, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw), a fearless horse-riding stunt performer from Miradero, a small town on the edge of the wide-open frontier.

Like her mother, Lucky isn’t exactly a fan of rules and restrictions, which has caused her Aunt Cora (Academy Award® winner Julianne Moore) no small amount of worry. Lucky has grown up in an East Coast city under Cora’s watchful eye, but when Lucky presses her own luck with one too many risky escapades, Cora picks up stakes and moves them both back with Lucky’s father, Jim (Oscar® nominee Jake Gyllenhaal), in Miradero.

Lucky is decidedly unimpressed with the sleepy little town. She has a change of heart when she meets Spirit, a wild Mustang who shares her independent streak, and befriends two local horseback riders, Abigail Stone (Mckenna Grace, Captain Marvel) and Pru Granger (Marsai Martin, Little). Pru’s father, stable owner Al Granger (Emmy winner Andre Braugher, Fox’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine), is the best friend of Lucky’s father.

When a heartless horse wrangler (Emmy nominee Walton Goggins, FX’s Justified) and his team plan to capture Spirit and his herd and auction them off to a life of captivity and hard labor, Lucky enlists her new friends and bravely embarks on the adventure of a lifetime to rescue the horse who has given her freedom and a sense of purpose, and has helped Lucky discover a connection to her mother’s legacy and to her Mexican heritage that she never expected.

Spirit Untamed is the next chapter in DreamWorks Animation’s beloved franchise that began with the 2002 Oscar-nominated film Spirit: Stallion of Cimarron and includes an Emmy-winning TV series. The film is directed by Elaine Bogan (Netflix and DreamWorks Animation Television’s Trollhunters: Tales of Arcadia) and is produced by Karen Foster (co-producer, How to Train Your Dragon). The film’s co-director is Ennio Torresan (head of story, The Boss Baby), and the film’s score is by composer Amie Doherty (Amazon’s Undone, DreamWorks Animation’s Marooned).

Check out the brand-new trailer for Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Bad Batch,” an original animated series launching exclusively on Disney+. 

Star Wars: The Bad Batch” makes its debut on Tuesday, May 4, with a special 70-minute premiere, followed by new episodes every Friday starting on May 7. 
 
Star Wars: The Bad Batch” follows the elite and experimental clones of the Bad Batch (first introduced in “The Clone Wars”) as they find their way in a rapidly changing galaxy in the immediate aftermath of the Clone War. Members of Bad Batch – a unique squad of clones who vary genetically from their brothers in the Clone Army – each possess a singular exceptional skill that makes them extraordinarily effective soldiers and a formidable crew.
 
Star Wars: The Bad Batch” is executive produced by Dave Filoni (“The Mandalorian,” “Star Wars: The Clone Wars”), Athena Portillo (“Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” “Star Wars Rebels”), Brad Rau (“Star Wars Rebels,” “Star Wars Resistance”) and Jennifer Corbett (“Star Wars Resistance,” “NCIS”) with Carrie Beck (“The Mandalorian,” “Star Wars Rebels”) as co-executive producer and Josh Rimes as producer (“Star Wars Resistance”). Rau is also serving as supervising director with Corbett as head writer.   
 
Visit StarWars.com for more exciting news on the series. 

Welcome to the Jam!  NBA champion and global icon LeBron James goes on an epic adventure alongside timeless Tune Bugs Bunny with the animated/live-action event “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” from director Malcolm D. Lee and an innovative filmmaking team including Ryan Coogler and Maverick Carter

This transformational journey is a manic mashup of two worlds that reveals just how far some parents will go to connect with their kids. When LeBron and his young son Dom are trapped in a digital space by a rogue A.I., LeBron must get them home safe by leading Bugs, Lola Bunny and the whole gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes to victory over the A.I.’s digitized champions on the court: a powered-up roster of professional basketball stars as you’ve never seen them before. 

It’s Tunes versus Goons in the highest-stakes challenge of his life, that will redefine LeBron’s bond with his son and shine a light on the power of being yourself. The ready-for-action Tunes destroy convention, supercharge their unique talents and surprise even “King” James by playing the game their own way.

It was announced today that ACMI, Australia’s national museum of screen culture, will be bringing the internationally acclaimed exhibition Disney: The Magic of Animation to Melbourne for its Australian debut as part of the city’s Melbourne Winter Masterpiece seriessupported by Visit Victoria.  

Opening Thursday 13 May, the exhibition celebrates almost 100 magical years of Disney animation. This rare glimpse behind the scenes of Walt Disney Animation Studios will give visitors the opportunity to experience the incredible artistry behind the studio’s much-loved characters and see how drawings are brought to life, from pencil and paper to today’s computer-generated wonders.

Walt Disney Animation Studios has been creating extraordinary films for nearly a century, with every film beginning with drawings that capture the essence of character, story and emotion. Disney: The Magic of Animation features over 500 original art works from the 1920s through to the present day, including paintings, sketches and concept art that have been specially selected by the Walt Disney Animation Research Library.

These rarely seen works reveal the development of beloved stories and animation techniques from dozens of classics ranging from Mickey Mouse’s first talkie Steamboat Willie (1928) to Fantasia (1940) to Frozen (2013). Disney: The Magic of Animation will also debut never-before-exhibited artwork from the studio’s newest critically-acclaimed release Raya and the Last Dragon (2021).

“We’re thrilled to bring Disney: The Magic of Animation to Australia as ACMI’s 2021 Melbourne Winter Masterpiece – the first since reopening after our $40 million transformation. Disney’s pioneering work has brought the art of animation to audiences across the globe for nearly a century. This exhibition invites us behind the scenes, celebrating the artists and their incredible craft as they create the magical worlds and iconic characters that we know and love,” said ACMI Director & CEO Katrina Sedgwick OAM.

“At The Walt Disney Company, storytelling is at the heart of everything we do to entertain and inspire our local audiences. That’s why we are incredibly excited to share this exhibition, Disney: The Magic of Animation, with the people of Melbourne. We hope that guests will both be inspired and delighted by the artistry showcased, bringing to life our Disney stories and its magic, here in Australia,” said Kylie Watson-Wheeler, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, The Walt Disney Company Australia & New Zealand.

“The filmmakers and storytellers at Walt Disney Animation Studios have been creating, producing and pushing the boundaries of animation for almost 100 years. Animation is an art form that literally brings still, static images to life. Whether it is a series of appealing line drawings, shot in sequential order to create a believable character, or complex digital imagery rendered to create a magical effect, animation has the power to transport the viewer into a world of imagination and beauty,” added Mary Walsh, Managing Director of the Walt Disney Animation Research Library.

“This Melbourne-exclusive exhibition will be a huge drawcard for ACMI and Victoria this winter – bringing more visitors into the heart of Melbourne and igniting the magic of Disney for kids and families across our state,” said Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson.

Disney: The Magic of Animation opens at ACMI on Thursday 13 May. Tickets can be purchased online at acmi.net.au   

Kaleidescope Entertainment is buzzing to announce that Maya The Bee: The Golden Orb will be released in cinemas in the UK and Ireland from May 17. 

Maya The Bee: The Golden Orb is the third theatrical feature in the successful Maya the Bee franchise; an iconic animated series that has been entertaining young children for more than 100 years. 

When a bored Maya and Willi bust out of winter lockdown early, they are catapulted headfirst into a top secret mission! Entrusted with the care of a sacred seed, Maya and Willi team up with their old pal’s Arnie and Barnie to deliver the seed to its new home atop the mysterious Bonsai Mountain.

When their “seed” hatches, Maya and Willi come face to face with their biggest responsibility yet – a smooshy, squishy little princess! This adventure is a LOT more than they bargained for as they take on bounty hunters, thugs and ruthless enemies, to return the lost princess to her mountain colony, only to find it hanging in the balance of a turf war and remorseless predators.

Willi discovers a side of himself that he never expected as he becomes protective of the tiny princess, but to save the her, and her colony, Maya must learn that trust is not just a word, it has to be earned!

 Ideal for fans of family adventures Antz, A Bugs Life and Bee Movie, Maya The Bee: The Golden Orb is an epic bug battle that will transport you to exciting new worlds!

Summary: A young warrior sets off to find the last remaining dragon after her world faces annihilation at the hands of some dark monsters.

Year: 2021

Cinema Release Dates: 4th March 2021 (Australia), 4th March 2021 (Thailand), 5th March 2021 (USA)

VOD Release Dates: 5th March 2021 (UK), 5th March 2021 (USA)

Country: USA

Director: Don Hall, Carlos Lopez Estrada

Screenwriter: Adele Lim, Qui Nugyen

Cast: Awkwafina (Sisu (voice)), Gemma Chan (Namarri (voice)), Francois Chau (Wahn), Sung Kang (Dang Hai (voice)), Daniel Dae Kim (Benja (voice)), Dichen Lachman (General Atitaya, Spine Warror (voice)), Sandra Oh (Virana (voice)), Jon Park (Chai (voice)), Lucielle Soong (Dang Hu (voice)), Kelly Marie Tran (Raya (voice)), Thalia Tran (Little Noi (voice)), Alan Tudyk (Tuk Tuk (voice)), Izaac Wang (Boun (voice)), Benedict Wong (Tong (voice)), Jona Xiao (Young Namaari (voice))

Running Time: 114 mins

Classification: PG (Australia), G (Thailand), PG (USA)

BLACKBIRD REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Raya And The Last Dragon Review:

It is hard to believe that it has been twelve months since Disney released a brand new film straight to cinemas… yes even the House Of Mouse was not immune from the great Covid cinema lockdown worldwide. The great news is that Disney returns to cinemas this week with a film that is arguably one of their greatest pieces of animated brilliance – Raya And The Last Dragon.

It is rare these days to find an animation that has adults staring wide-eyed and excited at the screen the way that so many of the Disney classics did when we were kids but such is the stunning artwork and captivating storyline of Raya that it certainly wakes up your inner child.

Inspired by South East Asian culture the film follows the adventures of Raya (voiced by Kelly Marie Tran – Star Wars: The Last Jedi) a young warrior who is trained by her father Benja (Daniel Dae Kim – Hellboy) to guard the last remaining piece of dragon power contained in a magical gem stone.

They live in a world divided, a place where every tribe has fended for itself since a great war that saw the destruction of the dragon race at the hands of evil creatures known as Druuns. Since then the land of Kumandra has become separated and the various tribes do whatever they can to survive while people such as Benja do whatever they can to try and reunite everybody once again.

However, when Raya is tricked by Namaari (Gemma Chan – Crazy Rich Asians), a young warrior from another tribe, the gem breaks and each tribe takes a piece for itself at the same time the spell is broken and the Druuns once again return and begin to destroy what is left on Earth. With the world then slowly disappearing and mankind being wiped out Raya begins a journey to try and find the last remaining dragon – Sisu (Awkwafina – Ocean’s Eight).

Excuse the pun but the magic of Raya And The Last Dragon is out of this world. The storyline here is involving and creative and this time Disney have realised that they don’t need a song every five minutes to move things along a little bit. In fact this time around the screenwriters and the literal team of directors that worked on the film get everything right.

The story itself draws you in the same way as other modern day fantasy tales, such as A Writer’s Odyssey, do while the film doesn’t exactly cater for extremely young children as it mixes fight sequences with chase sequences and even finds a way to throw in some humour without it ever seeming out of place. The world created here is as imaginative as the worlds film lovers a generation ago found themselves escaping to with films like The Neverending Story and The Dark Crystal and while the story is in depth it never loses its audience and instead keeps them on the edge of their seats.

What makes Raya And The Last Dragon come together so well though is the amazing artwork with the animation. There are times with this film where you find yourself watching the screen and believing you are watching actual actors and actresses as the artwork is so realistic – the same can be said for the scenery which was inspired by the filmmakers trips to Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar. Part of what makes the animation of this film work so well is also because the art team decided to make the characters look like the actors and actresses playing them. As soon as Benja walks onto screen the likeness he has in appearance to Daniel Dae Kim is astounding – and yes the filmmakers even find a way to make Sisu look like Awkwafina.

Raya And The Last Dragon is one of the cinematic highlights of 2021. Disney manage to bring everything together in such a way that the capture that old school Disney magic that has been missing from the company for quite awhile. This is truly a film for people of all ages as even adults are going to be captured by the magic and imagination of Raya.

David Griffiths and Lee G’s Raya And The Last Dragon Review:

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Lee’s Rating Out Of 5:

Alex First and Peter Krausz’s Raya And The Last Dragon Review:

Alex’s Score Out Of 5:

Peter’s Score Out Of 5:

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

Raya and the Last Dragon (2021) on IMDb

Other Subculture Raya And The Last Dragon Reviews:

You can also check out our review for Raya And The Last Dragon in The Phuket News https://www.thephuketnews.com/disney-is-back-raya-and-the-last-dragon-reigns-supreme-79250.php

Trailer: