Puss in Boots: The Last Wish
2 out of 5 Stars
“Star Light, Star Bright, first star I see tonight. I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight.”
What would you wish for if you had a last wish? DreamWorks brings back the iconic Puss in Boots franchise, a spin-off from the highly successful Shrek series, to explore that question. Throughout its short history, DreamWorks has produced excellent films with solid storylines. With movies like Shrek, Megamind and Kung Fu Panda in their stable, this production house franchise is well established in the industry. One defining element of their style is a knack for turning absurd storylines into workable plots. In the case of Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, this animation studio wishes for an excellent film. Sadly, this film adds little value to this franchise besides the comedy.
Directed by Joel Crawford (Trolls), the film elicits plenty of laughs from Antonio Banderas as Puss in Boots. In swashbuckling fashion, Puss takes down the local town giant before being felled by the large town bell. Rescued by the town doctor (who also doubles as the town barber), the sword-wielding feline receives a wake-up call. He is down to the last of his nine lives. After a brief sojourn in cat retirement, Puss strives to regain his immortality in any way possible, with a motley crew of fairy tale characters and unlikely friends trying to thwart his efforts. Puss eventually realises that he is not the most important person and needs to be a friend to others as well. The film contains plenty of laughs, particularly for adults, and children will enjoy seeing fairy tale characters come to life.
However, this film moves at a breakneck pace and has few moments to allow the audience to stop and reflect. This leads to a sense of disconnect between the fairy tale characters’ stories and the film’s plot. A 100-minute production does not give enough time to adequately flesh out at least five separate storylines effectively. As many laughs as the film contains, the plot's pace will sometimes leave audiences a little lost in the film's direction. Stereotyping fairy tale creatures made Shrek work very effectively. Yet, reimagining the fairy tale creatures in Puss in Boots: The Last Wish leads to uncertainty and confusion around this film's direction.
What should parents know about Puss in Boots: The Last Wish? Despite frequent humour and the whimsical nature of fairy tale creatures, this film explores a subject that all humans have contemplated at some point in life. What am I doing with my life and why does it matter? Death is personified exceptionally well in the film, leading to scary scenes that may trouble younger eyes. Even the fairy tale characters seem much rougher, less fantastic than in the traditional tales. This film would benefit from having parents and children watch it together.
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REEL DIALOGUE: Do you wonder what comes after death?
The film contains plenty of laughs, but it leaves a strong reminder that death comes to all, and all must live out the life they are given. Death is not a new subject in the world of cinema. While Puss in Boots: The Last Wish gives us a comical look into this subject, it is difficult to avoid its impact on our lives.
Thankfully, the Bible provides most of the answers people (or animated cats) are searching for in this life. This is where the promise of eternal life from the Bible's God truly brings this subject matter to life. To dig in deeper, it's all to be considered in Revelation 21-22.
It is not too surprising that belief in an afterlife exists. The difference found in Christianity is that access comes from a place of sacrifice and selflessness. To find out more, check out these links to see the real answers to life, death, and more.
“What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while then vanishes.” James 4:14