‘Onward’ is the movie we deserve right now


Left to right: Tom Holland and Chris Pratt star as elf brothers Ian and Barley, respectively in Pixar’s Onward. Courtesy of Disney

In light of current events, a lot of recently released movies are becoming available through streaming platforms. It’s during this particularly unmotivated time, that film can become a fun escape where “magic” exists, and that’s exactly what Disney Pixar’s “Onward” intends to teach us.

“Onward” follows two elf brothers, Ian (Tom Holland) and Barley (Chris Pratt) through an adventure to talk to their late father and see if magic really does still exist in the city of New Mushroomton.

Some immediate take-aways about the story were the moments that felt a little generic and formulaic, like Ian being a socially-awkward teenager who struggles to make friends in high school. There were some moments where the dialogue was a little silly and cliché, enough to make you and your roommate look over at each other at the same time, but these are relatively small gripes, especially for an animated Disney movie.

At times, the voice acting felt a little generic. While Holland and Pratt do a good job portraying two brothers, something about their voices sound overacted. It almost reminded me of the way kids-show hosts talk to an audience, but again, this being a Disney movie I don’t think this was necessarily a dealbreaker.

As a Pixar movie, the animation is pretty great and there was a lot of attention to small details that showed how much thought was put into creating a world that is fictional, but still feels real. Little cracks and imperfections along the expressway Ian and Barley are driving on were tiny details that made New Mushroomton feel as if you’re driving though it as well.

Something really special this film does is draw out a nice relationship between two brothers searching for their father and the bond that becomes stronger between the two as they learn more about each other.

What writer and director Dan Scanlon does well is create an inspiring story about finding hope where hope may be lost, and I think it’s a message that we all especially need to hear right now. When a lot of us are feeling uninspired and unmotivated, “Onward” is a light-hearted reminder to have fun whenever we can.

Rating: 3/5 stars.

Danielle Kessler can be reached at [email protected] or @reserv0irpups on Twitter.