My Thoughts On: “Kubo and the Two Strings”

A movie came out, received positive word-of-mouth, I saw it too late to deserve a full review, blah blah blah you know the drill.  Today we are looking at an animated film that reminds me way too much of Star Wars.

For what it is worth, Kubo and the Two Strings is very pretty to look at.  I won’t say that it’s as continually impressive as other stop-motion animated films like Coraline, but the style of Kubo is detailed and unique.  Despite this, I found more issues with this film than positives.

I am reminded of Star Wars (A New Hope specifically) because Kubo takes storytelling tropes as old as time and combines it with the originality of its own world/philosophy/lore to create an entirely original film.  The problem is that Kubo is not as expertly written as I’d prefer.  The premise is this: an orphan boy Kubo must find magical armor to defeat a spirit who attacked his family.  Just like The Nice Guys, Kubo is filled with random coincidences, and there are many plot points that aren’t explained.  They probably thought the audience would just accept the oddities of this movie due to the culture (which is also very cool) the characters live in, but these conveniences happen way too often regardless.

As far as voice acting goes, everyone, especially Charlize Theron and Matthew McConaughey, is pretty enjoyable, which is a shame when they have to read the ridiculous dialogue in the movie.  There is annoying slang, stupid love talk, and corny jokes (this movie is nowhere near as funny as it should be).  The climax is especially cheesy.  I get what they were going for, but when you take into account what happens in the climax, it makes certain plot points in the rest of the film completely useless.

There is enough creativity/style to this film to cover up the narrative flaws, but it is not at all “the best movie of 2016.”  Kubo and the Two Strings gets Guy’s Guru Grade of a B.


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