If you want to know what kind of movie Epic really is, think Alice in Wonderland meets Ferngully and you’ll have a pretty good representation. The film’s general plot seems a bit cliché: an innocent bystander is taken into a fantasy world seemingly against their will and eventually becomes an important player, but Epic makes it work. This time, said innocent bystander is not truly the main character of the story, an about-to-blossom flower is.
This new world was based on William Joyce’s The Leafmen and the Brave Good Bugs, and features Mary Katherine (voiced by Amanda Seyfried) who is forced to live with her eccentric father, Professor Bomba (Jason Sudeikis), after the death of her mother. Her father is convinced of the existence of tiny people living in the forest, in which Mary Katherine, nicknamed M.K., is skeptical towards. The many Leafmen protect the forest while fending off their evil equivalents, Boggans, whose purpose is to destroy the forest.
The plot unravels when the queen of the forest, Tara, (Beyoncé Knowles) must choose an heir to her throne by going out into a field of pods and taking her pick. The small bud would have to blossom under the full moon’s light for a new queen to be crowned by its magic. Once the pod is chosen, the area is immediately surrounded by Boggans, led by Mandrake (Christoph Waltz), who want the pod for their own evil agenda. While this battle is taking place M.K. goes out into the woods looking for her runaway, three-legged dog named Ozzie, and is conveniently at the right place and the right time when the Queen falls off of a hummingbird after being shot with an arrow in her escape attempt.Before her unfortunate death, the Queen passes on the pod to M.K. and shrinks her down to Leafmen size with her magic. The main goal is to get the small bud to bloom under the moonlight because if it blooms in darkness it becomes evil, which is what the Boggans want and what the Leafmen are fighting to avoid in order to save the forest from being destroyed.
But the task turns out to be difficult to complete when the Boggans keep intervening and trying to steal the bud for themselves, and at one point successfully kidnap the bud and its main caretakers Mub and Grub (Aziz Ansari and Chris O’Dowd, respectively).
Epic features admirably detailed animation, unique character designs, and entrancing scenery. Though it does not exactly live up to its title, the movie has a perfect balance of comedy and action and is a great film to watch for any animation enthusiast. Score: 6/10
Mariangely Miyares / Graphics Department