Theatrical Reviews

Onward Review

Onward 1

Walt Disney Pictures/Pixar   

What’s It About?
Two elf brothers are given a magical staff by their mother, which will allow them to spend one day with their deceased father – but things go awry.   

Who’s In It?
Tom Holland (The Impoossible, In The Heart Of The Sea, & more recently Spider-Man: Homecoming & Far From Home)
Chris Pratt (Guardians Of The Galaxy, Jurassic World, & more recently The Lego Movie 1-2)   

Other notables include:
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Seinfeld, Veep, & more recently Downhill)
Octavia Spencer (The Help, The Shape Of Water, & more recently Ma)   

Director: Dan Scanlon (Tracy, & Monsters University)   

Audiences Expect:
Pixar have led the way over the past few decades with their ground-breaking films, remarkable animation and sob-inducing storylines – just think of Up, Toy Story 3 or Inside Out.
Well director Dan Scanlon, previously of Monsters University fame, returns to the fore with an original film which sees two elfin brothers, awkward and anxious teen Ian, and his older, louder, fantasy-obsessed brother Barley growing up in New Mushroomton, brought up by their loving mother, Laurel.
Sadly their father passed away when Ian was just a baby, and Barley was a toddler so neither have any real, tangible memories of him and naturally this weighs on both boys somewhat. But on Ian’s sixteenth birthday, he receives a gift from his late father, which is a magical staff which can bring back their dad for a single day.
Inevitably things go awry, and the boys, plus a new companion, end up going on something of an odyssey, complete with life-lessons in this magical, feel-good film.
The animation is typically on top form, and the script really licks along at a pace, while the chemistry between the two bros, played by Chris Pratt as the bolshy one, and Tom Holland as the awkward one, is palpable.
While it may not be as ground-breaking as some previous Pixar efforts, it is a welcome return to Pixar’s original story-telling and, perhaps on account of the subject matter having personal relevance to the director, Onward is a typically moving and heart-warming movie.     

In A Nutshell:
An emotionally-affecting & visually stunning film about love, loss and connection, which delivers the usual Pixar punch.   

Stunning animation as always
Touching storyline about father/son and fraternal relationships   

Less groundbreaking than Pixar at its best eg Inside Out, Up, WALL-E

Certificate: U