Thursday, September 23, 2010

Movie Review: Legends of the Guardians

Acclaimed filmmaker Zack Snyder makes his animation debut with the fantasy family adventure “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole,” based on the beloved Guardians of Ga’Hoole books by Kathryn Lasky. The film follows Soren, a young owl enthralled by his father’s epic stories of the Guardians of Ga’Hoole, a mythic band of winged warriors who had fought a great battle to save all of owlkind from the evil Pure Ones.

While Soren dreams of someday joining his heroes, his older brother, Kludd, scoffs at the notion, and yearns to hunt, fly and steal his father’s favor from his younger sibling. But Kludd’s jealousy has terrible consequences—causing both owlets to fall from their treetop home and right into the talons of the Pure Ones. Now it is up to Soren to make a daring escape with the help of other brave young owls. Together they soar across the sea and through the mist to find the Great Tree, home of the legendary Guardians—Soren’s only hope of defeating the Pure Ones and saving the owl kingdoms.

The film features the voices of Helen Mirren, Geoffrey Rush, Jim Sturgess, Hugo Weaving, Emily Barclay, Abbie Cornish, Ryan Kwanten, Anthony LaPaglia, Miriam Margolyes, Sam Neill, Richard Roxburgh and David Wenham.
Snyder directed “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole” from a screenplay by John Orloff and Emil Stern, based on the Guardians of Ga’Hoole novels by Kathryn Lasky. The film was produced by Zareh Nalbandian, with Donald De Line, Deborah Snyder, Lionel Wigram, Chris deFaria, Kathryn Lasky and Bruce Berman serving as executive producers.

The film’s production designer was Simon Whiteley, its art director, Grant Freckelton, its editor, David Burrows, its digital supervisors, Aidan Sarsfield and Ben Gunsberger, its animation director, Eric Leighton, its previz & lensing director, David Scott, its head of story, Alexs Stadermann, its supervising sound editor and designer, Wayne Pashley, its animation supervisor, Alex Weight, its character supervisor, Damien Gray, its environment supervisor, Greg Jowle, and its composer, David Hirschfelder.

Warner Bros. Pictures presents, in association with Village Roadshow Pictures, a Village Roadshow Pictures Production, an Animal Logic Production, “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole.”

Kludd chases a bird
The animation was great especially in IMAX. The 3D was amazing in the action scenes. Although the owls still look like the penguins of Happy Feet. They even add drama to it in a bullet-slow motion effect like in The Matrix. Love the cinematic chase scene of Kludd, one of the characters of the movie.

For the characters, I can relate myself to Soren, a protagonist of the story, in a lot of ways. Like Soren, he dreams of his heroes, which is the luxury we don't have in this time and age. Soren's dreams is all that he got to motivate himself that made him a crucial part of the story. His struggles can be all too real. Even though the story was set using owls as a medium, there are parallelisms that can be connected to the human society.

I also like the imagination of creating the characters. Since it was based on the book, which I haven't read yet, they were done so neat. The choice of weapons of the owls were saw cool like Wolverine's claws. Owls were not the same level of hawks but they are also predators that hunt smaller preys like birds and rodents.

The ensemble has a great casting. My personal favorites Sam Neill and especially Hugo Weaving were ideal for their respective roles. I can see why they chose Weaving since he is my favorite antagonist as Megatron in Transformers and Agent Smith in The Matrix and as an antihero in V for Vendetta.

In summary, I recommend this movie for the whole family to watch. it is not violent and it will be guaranteed pure enjoyment. Since it is a Warner Bros. production, expect a new Looney Tunes 3D short film starring Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote to start up your movie with pure fun. Legends of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole opens in all Philippine cinemas on September 24 and is distributed by Warner Bros. Photos courtesy of Warner Bros. Phils.

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