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The words “from the makers of Ice Age and Robots” and “starring the voices of Beyoncé, Pitbull and Steven Tyler” don’t exactly inspire confidence in a summer animated release. In fact, based on the promotional materials for Blue Sky Studios’ Epic, one would be forgiven for thinking it was making a play for the pop-culture-addled throne of Shrek, or perhaps positioning itself as a modern-day FernGully full of heavy-handed environmental grandstanding. Those assumptions are, thankfully, very, very wrong. Epic is a sprawling, otherworldly adventure that combines the best elements of The Wizard of Oz and Lord of the Rings into a surprisingly poignant fairy tale. A troubled teen girl (Amanda Seyfried) is magically reduced to the size of an insect only to discover the flora and fauna are all living in an advanced society guarded by tiny soldiers called Leafmen and under attack by an evil king (Christoph Waltz). In terms of pure visual spectacle, Epic is a wonder. A tree stump becomes the dark castle from which an evil army plots world domination. Tiny soldiers dogfight through the skies atop hummingbirds and bats. Miraculously, none of this comes off as particularly cutesy. Most impressive, though, is the sense of wonder that permeates Epic. With its eye-popping art and living forest aesthetic, it’s only natural to compare the setting to James Cameron’s Avatar. Yet Epic has more life in one frame than Cameron mustered in his entire film. It isn’t perfect, but Epic nonetheless nails a balance of heart and popcorn fun. And that it doesn’t resort to a bunch of fart jokes or a sing-along between Beyoncé, Pitbull and the dude from Aerosmith truly sets it apart.
  • Genres: Animated, Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
  • Running Time: 103 minutes
  • Release Date: Friday, May 24, 2013
  • Country: United States
  • Language: English
  • MPAA Rating: PG [ Brief Rude Language, Mild Action, Some Scary Images ]
  • Critic's Score: B
  • Starring: Colin Farrell [Voice of Ronin], Josh Hutcherson [Voice of Nod], Amanda Seyfried [Voice of Mary Katherine], Beyoncé Knowles [Voice of Queen Tara], Christoph Waltz [Voice of Mandrake], Pitbull [Voice of Bufo], Jason Sudeikis [Voice of Bomba], Steven Tyler [Voice of Nim Galuu], Aziz Ansari [Voice of Mub], Chris O'Dowd [Voice of Grub], Blake Anderson [], Judah Friedlander []
  • Directed by: Chris Wedge [Director], Lori Forte [Screenwriter], Jerry Davis [Screenwriter]
  • Visit the Movie Website | Watch the trailer

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