There is programming for everyone this weekend as the biggest and best movies go head to head clamouring for as many dollars as they possibly can. “Epic” is an animated film from the makers of “Ice Age” where even the biggest adventures can take place on the tiniest of scales.
Epic tells the story of an ongoing battle between the forces of good, who keep the natural world alive, and the forces of evil, who wish to destroy it. When a teenage girl (Amanda Seyfried) finds herself magically transported into this secret universe, she teams up with an elite band of warriors and a crew of comical, larger-than-life figures, to save their world…and ours.
Sadly, to call this film “Epic” is an inaccurate misnomer because to be quite honest it is anything but. Recycling themes, templates and ideas from anywhere between 6 to 12 other animated films that have been released in the past 20 years, doesn’t make for a great experience. It recycles so many other stories that it truly doesn’t haven’t any elements that are remotely original in it. Granted kids are an easier market place to appease, but even these days they will recognize all these fantasy elements that have been seen before in countless other films. It looks very good as the animation is crisp and it pops off the screen with real vibrancy that isn’t just the 3D, but it is just such a tired story that it is a hard film to get excited about because with everything that is happening on the screen, the story truly just sits there doing very little and if you have seen “Avatar” or “Ferngully” then “Epic” just brings nothing else to the table, it is truly a been there done that scenario. The dull rehashed nature of the script is really a disappointment considering how loaded the ensemble cast is.
As our heroine M.K., Amanda Seyfried makes a likeable character at the very least along with her “Bill Nye-The Science Guy”-esque dad (Jason Sudekis), but when you throw Colin Farrell as a Leaf man warrior prince, Beyonce Knowles at the queen he’s in love with, Josh Hutcherson as a cocky young hero at the screen simply going through the motions, not a lot is going to happen as the myriad of subplots are either too forced or simply go nowhere. A slug and a snail (Aziz Ansari and Chris O’Dowd respectively) provide some halfway descent comic relief as they banter back and forth, however there is also a subplot with a mobster bullfrog (voiced by Pitbull) and a mystical caterpillar (Steven Tyler) who gets a musical number out of the blue that is actually only about 1/3rd of a song and both end up spinning their wheels. It also goes without saying that any film that tragically misuses Christoph Waltz as a bad guy, just doesn’t have allot going for it. Sadly the best character in the film is the part blind, deaf three legged dog…and when you find yourself wanted to watch an entire movie centered around that helpless mutt and his adventures, that’s not a good thing.
Will “Epic” delight the youngsters? Maybe, but any older kids and adults also run the risk of being bored to tears by this one as well.
1 out of 5 stars.
“Epic” is now playing at theatres all across the country; check with your local listings for show times.
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