Hello everyone. I am going to just ramble my feelings, and see where one point leads to, since I haven’t posted anything in 5 months, and I have dealt with a little bit of….. disinterest. I still love animation, specifically animated film, and am still looking forward to what future years will bring to it. At the same time, something about this year in animation has just thrown me off.
With ranking the 2018 movies, I just didn’t have the energy for it, and didn’t feel like the quality was there. 2019 went off without a hitch regarding posting reviews, and watching movies, but somewhere in the middle of the year, I just lost interest. Managed to catch “Frozen 2” (there will be a review on that movie), and…… it only heightened my issue with this year in animation.
The weird thing for me is that……. it wasn’t necessarily a horrible year for animation, but it’s PAINFULLY forgettable. I watched “The Lego Movie 2”, and felt like it was relatively forgettable. The same thing happened with “How To Train Your Dragon 3”, and that situation has pissed me off as the year came and went, and it’s due to the franchise being put to such a high standard, and it…… came and went. The movie was the weakest of the franchise, and….. it just did not add much to me. And now, I have VERY little impression on the entire franchise in a way. I felt this way after watching “Kung Fu Panda 3”, and both franchises are just…… saturated to me.
Of course there is going to be some bad films in each year, and my tolerance for watching a bunch of bad films just decreased within the last year. “Toy Story 4” came around, and while I do like it, I do have some problems with it (especially with the side characters), and its entire existence lead to some of the HUGE problems that have plagued animated film during the 2010s. It brought some great elements to the franchise, and showed another side of the ideology of a toy, but there were definitely some contrivances that bother me.
After this, I kind of took a break, but knew that I had to talk about “Frozen 2”. I am not going to say a whole lot about the movie yet, but it hasn’t changed my opinion on the franchise, and I felt like it had even more contrivances that stick out like a sore thumb, and as a whole, it’s very weird. I do not feel like it should have been given a sequel, and learning that they created the ending first has me feeling all types of ways. And the character development is still problematic, and I don’t like some of the messages it gives off.
Sequelitis has been something that everyone complained about for a while, but we had original movies that made up for it, and it usually wasn’t a bunch of major studios releasing a bunch of sequels at the same time. I felt the same way about movies “Incredibles 2” and “Ralph Breaks the Internet”, and somewhat about the movie year of 2018. Other studios are still getting ignored, and the original films are not enough to overcompensate for the sequels, which have gotten more and more contrived. Sequels make more money, and as we have seen within these more recent years, “Toy Story 3”, “Minions”, “Finding Dory”, “Despicable Me 3”, “Toy Story 4”, and “Frozen 2” passing a billion in the box office. For original movies, it’s only “Frozen” and “Zootopia” have passed a billion.
Studios like Blue Sky are suffering now because they heavily relied on the “Ice Age” franchise to keep their studio alive, and it has gotten tired as the franchise is running dry. The same thing is happening to Warner Animation Group, who heavily relied on “The Lego Movie” franchise, and are suffering 5-6 years later. I know some of the major animated films have announced that they are taking a break on sequels, so hopefully this will cause the focus on creating strong AND mega successful animated films, but I don’t expect them to keep that promise for long.
Maybe I am just talking a bunch of rubbish, and needed a bit of a detox, but it’s just kind of rubbed me the wrong way with how things are going on. It’s even worse because there are certain narratives on pushing “equality”, “feminism”, “race relations”, etc. that are supposed to be more complex than narratives of the past, but it just creates its own stereotypes and other problematic beliefs, but that is another topic for another day. I don’t like it when certain agendas are pushed on me, and despite these movies supposedly pushing more complex options, it just seems like it isn’t the case, since complexity is about options and perspectives; meaning more than one.
Moving forward, I don’t think I am going to discuss EVERY North American animated film of the year, because it’s honestly DRAINING to get through so many bad movies, but I am looking forward to watching quite a few of these animated movies. There are some posts in my archives tat I started writing years ago, but never completed. Maybe I should get back into some of those archives to get into the groove, and get some inspiration again. See you all soon.