By Hailey Collier,
While unfortunately sharing the same opening weekend as “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” “Ferdinand” still manages to leave a mark in the audience’s hearts.
Based on the 1936 children’s book, this movie centers around a bull named Ferdinand, who finds himself out of place in a world of fighting bulls. In his early years, the other bulls he lives with, hopeful but ever-nervous Guapo (Peyton Manning), small but mighty Bones (Anthony Anderson), the mostly blind Angus (David Tennant) and Valiente (Bobby Cannavale), all strive to one day be in the ring with the red flag.
After his father is chosen to fight in the ring, and the trailer comes back empty, Ferdinand takes the first chance he can get his hooves on to escape. He finds himself on a lovely farm filled with flowers, and a girl named Nina (Lily Day) to take care of him. However, this is short lived, after a trip to the flower festival goes awry, and Ferdinand finds himself back at Casa del Toro with the now grown up bulls he once knew.
Teaming up with a goat, Lupe (Kate McKinnon), that has the audience laugh from the first introduction, Ferdinand begins his plot to free not just himself, but all the captive bulls.
Initially, “Ferdinand” seems like a light-hearted, feel-good movie, however, as the action develops, it becomes clear that there are two different tones to this story.
On one hand, there are many deep realizations happening for the characters, such as when Bones realizes that it is okay to feel sadness, and it does not make one weak. Additionally, there are a lot of harsh scenes depicting a more real account of bullfighting.
On the other hand, there is a lot of comedic relief mixed in, delivered mainly by McKinnon. There is even a full on dance-off, complete with dabbing horses.
Although the film is more complex in plot than the original book, it keeps one thing fairly simple: the animation is not outrageously realistic, but has a more soft, storybook-like look to it. This was extremely effective in conveying the characters’ many emotions– devastation, elation, pure hope
One thing that keeps constant throughout the movie are the sharp twists and turns from laugh out loud moments, to tear jerking monologues and scenes, something that may not be expected from a movie targeted for younger audiences.
While “Ferdinand” may not be winning any Oscars, it certainly proves to be an “awe” evoking movie, and more than it may seem like on the surface.