Director: Travis Knight
Writers: Marc Haimes and Chris Butler
Starring: Charlize Theron, Matthew McConaughey, Rooney Mara, Ralph Fiennes, George Takei and Art Parkinson
Release Date: August 19, 2016
Runtime: 1 hour, 41 minutes
Rating: Rated PG for “thematic elements, scary images, action and peril”
Plot Summary: “A young boy travels across ancient Japan on a magical quest to locate an enchanted suit of armor that holds the power to defeat a vengeful spirit.”
I could have spent my Labor Day weekend sleeping in or rewatching “Game of Thrones” for the 500th time, but instead, I decided to attend a matinee showing of a film that I knew almost nothing about; “Kubo and the Two Strings” (2016). Earlier this year, I had gone into another movie that I knew absolutely nothing about, which was “Nerve” (2016), and as a result, I was entranced completely by the story’s suspense and plot twists. If “Nerve” had disappointed me, I probably would have avoided “Kubo” altogether and decided to see a film like “Jason Bourne” (2016) or “Pete’s Dragon” (2016) that I knew more about. When the movie’s closing credits appeared however, I was overjoyed that I had gone to see it.
“Kubo and the Two Strings” is a true triumph in the animation genre; it has a beautiful and original story that takes audiences on a magical ride from beginning to end. The voice cast contains powerful and booming performances from Hollywood’s biggest names, the script is absolutely hilarious, the animation in this film alone is mesmerizing and it presents strong messages on the themes of family, imperfection, afterlife, mortality and memories that kids and adults alike will be moved by.
I can not even begin to tell you how much I love this movie. I just reread that last line a couple of times to make sure I actually meant to write that because I can not remember ever having loved a film this much before. I was so moved and touched by this story that I often began to feel as though it was beginning to become my new favorite movie of all time. I will have to see it a few more times to determine whether or not this is the case, but I can honestly say that “Kubo and the Two Strings” is not only one one of the best animated films I have seen, but also one of the best films I have gone to see in the theaters period.
Please do yourself a favor and go see “Kubo and the Two Strings”. I promise you will not be disappointed and I guarantee you will thank me for pushing this film in your face after you have seen it. Yes, it’s that good. If this film does not receive a nomination for “Best Animated Feature” at the 89th Academy Awards next year, I will be furious. In case you haven’t guessed it already, “Kubo” is going to get an “A+++” from me and it is going to get that same grade when I see it a second, third and fourth time.