MPA Rating: PG
Director: Peter Sohn
Starring: Leah Lewis, Mamoudou Athie, Ronnie Del Carmen
Runtime: 1 hr 41 mins
What It Is: We are told of the story of Ember (Lewis) and her families journey from the Land of Fire to this different place. A place where fire, water, earth and wind all mesh and live together. Given their obvious difference they rarely meet one and other. When Ember runs into Wade (Athie) a city official who could single-handedly shut down her parents store. A store specializing in products dedicated to Fire people. When Ember finds out that it’s possible to save her parents shop she’ll do what she must. Even if fire and water don’t mix.
What We Think: What a gorgeous allegory! The meesage is simple and though it is somewhat beaten into you it’s done in such a beautiful manner that you are absolutely entranced by it. First and foremost each element is animated somewhat differently. Wade’s water people look traditional to Pixar’s style while Ember and her fire family have a more robust look to them. This film is narratively very emotionally heavy. I cried. I legitimately cried multiple times in this and the romantic tension is up there with the best of the romantic comedy genre. That said it’s clear Pixar CONTINUE to be the pinnacle of storytelling within the House of Mouse. Even if some other studios are finally starting to realize the power that animation has.
Our Grade: A, Everyone should see this. Bring your whole family. ESPECIALLY if you’re from an immigrant family as I am. You’ll see a lot of yourself in Ember and her family. This is a beautiful film gorgeously animated and put together by people who clearly care about whats being put out. That’s something I haven’t seen from Disney in some of the other projects from their various properties. I’m sure this’ll get thrown onto Disney+ soon as it didn’t fair well in theaters. I think you should throw this one on and bring your tissues because it truly is a GORGEOUSLY told tale. Love your parents, hold them tight, you never know when they’ll leave you. A must see!