Film: Puss in Boots: The Last Wish
Cast(voice): Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek, Harvey Guillén, Florence Pugh, Olivia Colman, Ray Winstone, Samson Kayo, Da`Vine Joy Randolph, and John Mulaney
Directors: Joel Crawford, Januel Mercado
Rating: 3/ 5
Runtime: 102 mins
This sequel to a clunky Dreamworks film from nearly a decade ago has quite a zingy feel to it even though it comes at us with a rather cheesy opening salvo.
The storyline here feels rather flimsy – Puss in Boots (Banderas) discovers that his passion for adventure has already ridden him of eight of the nine lives a cat is supposed to possess. The swashbuckling kitty from the “Shrek” universe, a dashing adventurer, a charmer with the ladies, feared and renowned throughout the land is now being stalked by death in the form of a dark hooded wolf. So it`s pretty opportune that he hears of this mythical last wish which could probably help reset his life counter to a restart. The narrative basically takes us through this new adventure that a fearful Puss sets out on. But there are hurdles to overcome and many more who covet the ‘wish’ – so obviously Puss can’t do it alone.
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The narrative takes us on a vacillating joyride full of emotional highs and lows – poignant, introspective, hilarious, sometimes tiresome, and even heartwarming.
The many zany assortments of characters ( including Goldilocks and the three bears and Kitty Softpaws) showcased with distinctive quirky personalities, are what keep us invested in this flimsy rather factitious playful adventure. The voice cast led by the charismatic Antonio Banderas and sultry Salma Hayek has the likes of Florence Pugh, Olivia Colman, Ray Winstone, Da`Vine Joy Randolph, and John Mulaney, among many others to lend weighty substance in the form of tone, pitch, and tenor to what might have been a purely frolicsome endeavor. But it`s really Puss’ unlikely ally: a scruffy, crazy-eyed Chihuahua pretending to be a cat, Perrito, played with supple voiced charm by Harvey Guillen, who steals your heart.
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The winsome animation aesthetics, fast-paced narrative with a smattering of sententious humor, coupled with rich colorful textures and visuals in 3D make this adventure fairly enjoyable.