So, fun story. I work at a movie theater, and one of the biggest joys I’ve had working there is hearing people struggle saying the title of this movie, Abominable. Now I’m not poking fun at these people, as I struggle to pronounce it as well. If this were video review and not a written one, you’d hear me struggle hardcore with that. It’s just one of those titles that doesn’t quite roll off the tongue for whatever reason. So, just for flavor, I am going to refer to this movie as the various titles I’ve heard it called instead of it’s title proper. With that in mind, let’s talk about Dreamworks’ new animated feature That Weird Little Snowman Movie.
Dreamworks has almost always had top tier direction. There are few exceptions, but normally it's a safe bet that they are directed and animated expertly. Yeti Movie I Think is no exception. It is stunning in the animation department. It’s got little tiny issues that I would probably chalk up to direction, like pacing problems. It’s one of those movies that sometimes goes a mile a minute but also goes at a snail's pace in other moments. The ending especially both rushes and drags its feet crossing the finish line. I think both the positives and negatives in direction balance each other out. I will say, I think the director Jill Culton accomplished the aspects of the film probably most important to her, and it’s a very pretty looking movie.
The plot is so tired. It’s the standard human bonds with creature and they go on a road trip to take the creature home while also learning a few things about themselves along the way. It is easily digestible goop that will please the target audience. It will not surprise anybody over four years old. That being said, it never becomes tedious. It’s familiar, but not unwelcome. There is enough there in music and animation to help the audience get over the fact they are experiencing plot deja vu.
ACTING | CHARACTERS | DIALOGUE:
This is the aspect of the film I am the most mixed about. The biggest glaring flaw I have with the acting is with the main character Yi voiced by Chloe Bennet. It’s not that her performance is bad, because I don’t believe it is. However, every time that character would open her mouth it was incredibly distracting to hear a clearly adult actor voice come out of a pre-teen body. She was just miscast. The rest of the cast fairs better. Sarah Paulson and Eddie Izzard being the stand outs as the ones with the most to chew on. All the voices with the exception of Chloe Bennet were serviceable. The villains are a ton of fun in this, and they elevate the movie. More than anything else, they will stick with the audience after I Can’t Pronounce It. It’s that Snow Beast Movie ends.
VISUAL EFFECTS | MAKEUP | DESIGN:
MUSIC | SCORE | SOUND DESIGN:
To be completely honest, I am a sucker for “Fix You” by Coldplay, and this movie used that song effectively. I personally think it was a wise choice to use that song instead of “Go Your Own Way” that was used in the trailer. Yi also has some solid moments with a violin. The score itself is also well put together. Credit to composer Rupert Gregson-Williams for putting together a soulful score. But mostly, kudos to the movie for using “Fix You” properly.
This movie is crazy pretty. With that being said, that isn’t exactly shocking. I am not taking anything away from the hard working animators over at Dreamworks because I know they busted their tails to make Cute Yeti look so impressive and pretty. The snow looked more realistic than anything in The Lion King remake, and I really do applaud their hard work. I’m just saying, when you are a multi-million dollar animation company, that is to be expected. I will say the design of the characters are very bland. The Yeti named Everest is so poorly designed that it almost tanks the movie. It is not memorable in the slightest, which I do not understand. It’s an animated movie where creativity should have no limit. Give me a cute Yeti that will stick with me after walking out of the theater. It’s almost false advertising that the Yeti is so unimpressive. I do not foresee many plush dolls of Everest being sold in the near future.
Snow Sasquatch is a perfectly serviceable movie for youngsters to attend and get a nice 90 minute adventure out of it. It’s a Dreamworks movie and it isn’t Shark Tale, so go in with that in mind. It offers very little for the older people in the audience, but it is nothing that will actively upset them or make them dread the experience. There are some moments of brilliance sprinkled in with the animation and the villains. The script and some lazy character design undermine the brilliance and no amount of “Fix You” can fix that issue. If you are a grandparent, this is a good choice to take your young grandkid to. However, if you aren’t a grandparent or a young child, perhaps this is one Yeti you shouldn’t catch.