ONWARD Review — Our Kid Critic Thinks It’s Magical

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Onward review — 11-year-old Betty Ordoña thinks Pixar’s latest animated adventure  is the next best thing to playing Dungeons and Dragons.

Onward ReviewIn a modern world populated by mythical creatures, magic is all-but forgotten and centaurs and cyclops live ordinary lives, holding down jobs and going to cafes. Elf brothers Ian and Barley Lightfoot (Tom Holland and Chris Pratt) uncover a spell that can resurrect their father – for a day. But when it goes awry, they embark on a quest to retrieve a magical artifact that can complete the spell.

I went to “Onward” with low expectations, which is why I was pleasantly surprised that it turned out to be a heartwarming film with elements of magic, monsters, and a Dungeons and Dragons-type game guiding the characters’ actions.

Onward is basically a D&D quest come to animated life. As a Dungeon Master myself, this was very fun, especially because Pratt’s DM character shares my enthusiasm. For all the people who are reading this and are very confused, Dungeons and Dragons is a role-playing game where you go on adventures with mystical elements. A Dungeon Master is the person who runs the game. And is obviously awesome.

Pixar gets an all-star voice cast, as usual. Octavia Spencer steals the show as the Manticore because she manages to be funny but her character isn’t defined by just that. I also liked Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the mom who is tougher than she looks. In fact, that’s also one thing in the film that I liked, that the women took initiative and didn’t just stand there.

One of the best parts of Onward is the unicorns, which act more like feral cats or raccoons than the majestic beasts we’re used to. Pixar’s animation keeps getting better and better. All the characters and settings are very detailed. The writing is witty and full of game and modern (human) life references.

I really like the end-credits song by Brandi Carlile, “Carried Me with You.” It sums up the movie in a magical way and Carlile’s voice really adds something to it.

If Betty’s Onward review makes you want to trot right out to see it, get times and tickets on Fandango.com.

Rated PG

1 Hour, 42 Minutes

Smallfoot reviewBetty Ordoña is 11-years-old. She loves movies, but loves reading, engineering, and riding her bicycle even more. Favorite films include The Princess Bride, Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. She is also an Official LAPL Comic Book Expert and Level 40 Pokémon trainer







Onward review — 11-year-old Betty Ordoña thinks Pixar’s latest animated adventure  is the next best thing to playing Dungeons and Dragons.

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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