Worst to Best Animated Films of 2019 Part 2

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(If you like what you see, you can go to camseyeview.biz to see more of my work on video game reviews, editorials, lists, Kickstarters, developer interviews, and review/talk about animated films. If you would like, consider contributing to my Patreon at patreon.com/camseyeview. It would help support my work, and keeps the website up. Thanks for checking out my work, and I hope you like this review!)

Here we are with Part 2 of the Worst to Best Animated Films of 2019! We shall now dip our toes into the films that were, simply put, okay, and some that are pretty solid! Nothing wrong with that. If you have yet to see part 1, then I recommend doing so. Now then, let’s get started!

39. Reign of the Supermen

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While I like the second part of the infamous Superman story arc, I still find it overall just okay. Sure, it might have better character dynamics, better jokes, and some solid action, but it’s still having to follow up a story that already had to pretzel itself into fitting the storyline, and it’s one of the last stories in the current DC animated film universe. Hopefully, they can end on a high note.

38. Batman Hush

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Yet again, we have another DC adaptation of a famous comic book that decided to change things up for some reason. I love the chemistry between Batman and Catwoman, and before the reveal, I loved Hush as a villain. Even characters I don’t have the patience for, like Damian, get a good line. Sadly, the twist does undo a lot of the mystery, and I get that they wanted to probably change it, since fans already know, but still. Don’t change too much, DC and WB, or else you might end up ruining the entire point of the story.

37. The Lion King (2019)

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On one hand, yes, this is quite possibly the worst animated film of the year. It was a pointless retelling of an already good film. The photo-realistic CGI is impressive, but it takes away the emotion of it all, and the fact that no one talks about it anymore, but is yet a billion-dollar maker is frustrating, when people could have gone and seen other movies. Films like this shouldn’t be rewarded. On the other hand, I find the tech highly impressive, the cast is great, and I get why people went to see it. I still prefer the original, and if I could, I would combine elements from both the remake and the original into an ultimate version, but alas, we have yet another remake that shows that the Disney remakes aren’t dying anytime soon.

36. Zombillenium

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Out of all of the animated films from overseas that I was interested to see, Zombillenium was the biggest disappointment for me. It has such a fun setting and a cool art style, but the dialogue is weak and the film can’t commit to either being a family film or focused on the commentary of the workforce. It has its moments, and I love some of the darker jokes, but I can understand why this film went under the radar and got overshadowed by other films.

35. Justice League vs. The Fatal Five

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For once, I can talk about a newer Bruce Timm DC animation product and not be on the back of my heels for it. Sure, it falls apart near the third act, and Miss Martian felt tacked on, but the main story and how it handled talking about traumatic events and characters was combined with some of the better action sequences of the DC animated films. I’m rooting to see them return to the so-called Justice League universe in future animated films.

34. The Addam’s Family 

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Out of all of the big theatrical animated features, this one was the most disappointing. It felt like they didn’t want to go far with the dark humor, the story was lopsided in giving characters satisfying arcs, and the animation was cheap-looking. It has a lot of fanservice for fans of the franchise, the casting was great, and when the dark comedy was able to breathe, it was really funny. Hopefully, they can make a sequel that’s better looking, and better told the next time we see this kooky spooky family.

33. Pachamama

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Probably the most family-friendly film of the list, Pachamama was a simple, but charming film that I had the opportunity to see before it hit Netflix, and it’s such a treat. Not only does it take place in, and is a bit more faithful to the culture it’s based on, it also has a unique visual style that it can call its own. It’s more family-friendly, and it’s a fairly simple film, but nothing wrong with well-executed simplicity.

32. The Angry Birds Movie 2 

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Talk about one of the biggest surprises of 2019. Yes, the story isn’t the strongest, and yes, when the jokes don’t land, they fall hard, but who would have thought this was going to be one of the best comedies of last year? On top of the solid animation, the jokes go out there, and are in such an abundance of different flavors of comedy. I give the team that made this film so much credit for going out there, and making this one of the best video game animated films out there.

31. Genius Party/Genius Party Beyond

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This is a wild bunch of shorts that we finally got legally, and it is one of the purest forms of what animation can do, in terms of visuals and storytelling. Some of them don’t work, and the ones that don’t work absolutely don’t work, but when they do, they are some of the most creative visuals you will see out of Japan. I hope they don’t stop doing these anthology shorts, so they can keep bringing in or showing off talented individuals in the animation industry.

30. The Case of Hana and Alice 

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While it is a prequel to a live-action film, the mix of roto-scope and CGI animation doesn’t fully work, and it can be a touch slow, I found myself enjoying the story of these two friends. It takes its time with the actual story that connects the events, but the chemistry of the two female leads sells you on their friendship. It might not be one of the best films out there, but I found the overall charm and small-scale story to be worth watching.

29. Another Day of Life 

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Based on the true events of a famous Polish journalist, Another Day of Life combines CGI roto-scope animation with live-action documentary footage in a dramatic and war-torn time of the Angolan Civil War. It also has some pretty out-there visuals, and can be a rather gripping story. I think it’s a little long, and it’s not a film I’m thinking about rewatching multiple times, but it’s an interesting story, and the visual look alone is worth checking this flick out!

28. Ne-Zha

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It’s amazing how in one year, China was able to show the world that they should be taken seriously with their theatrical animation, and Ne-Zha is one of those films. While looking downright gorgeous, and telling a story about discrimination and destiny, it is also seasoned with some of the best action you will see in CGI animation. It’s a shame that while the story can be deep and the lead characters are likable, the comedy drags the story down, and it’s a lot of comedy that isn’t funny. Still, seeing this become one of China’s biggest hits, and it was one of two amazing animated films from China, it shows a bright future ahead for the industry.

Thanks for reading the review! I hope you all enjoyed reading it! If you would like to support my work, make sure to share it out, and if you want to become a Patreon supporter, then you can go to patreon.com/camseyeview. I will see you all next time!

The Other Side of Animation 168: The Addams Family Review

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(If you like what you see, you can go to camseyeview.biz to see more of my work on video game reviews, editorials, lists, Kickstarters, developer interviews, and review/talk about animated films. If you would like, consider contributing to my Patreon at patreon.com/camseyeview. It would help support my work, and keeps the website up. Thanks for checking out my work, and I hope you like this review!)

It’s that spooky time of year again, and fortunately for me, I have two animated features that I can review that aren’t some old TV specials! It’s not that I don’t care about or have nostalgia for Halloween specials, but I want to tackle animated features that can be enjoyed during Halloween. That’s why I was happy to come across the new Addam’s Family film and Zombillenium. However, let’s tackle the iconic spooky family first with 2019’s The Addam’s Family. Directed by the duo of Conrad Vernon and Craig Tierman, and animated by Nitrogen Studios and Cinesite, it was released on October 11th to mostly mixed-to-negative reviews, but it has made back its budget, and hopefully will make a tidy profit for MGM. I mean, it’s already got a sequel being planned, so that’s a good sign. So, what do I think about the monstrous antics of the Addams Family? Well, read my review, you goofy ghoulies!

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The film stars, of course, The Addams Family. You have the husband Gomez Addams, voiced by Oscar Isaac, and Morticia Addams, Gomez’s wife who is voiced by Charlize Theron. Both of them have two kids named Pugsley Addams, voiced by Finn Wolfhard and Wednesday Addams, voiced by Chloe Grace Moretz. Of course, it isn’t the Addams Family without Uncle Fester, voiced by Nick Kroll, and Grandmama, voiced by Bette Midler. The family lives in a mansion that rests at the top of a mountain overlooking a small town called Assimilation. The town is essentially run by a reality TV star homemaker named Margaux Needler, voiced by Allison Janney. Can the Addams keep living their lives and not fall into the control of people who are against their ways?

Let’s talk about the positive elements of the film. For a film with a $40 mil budget, the animation is decent. The skin textures look a little too smooth, but the fact that they designed the characters off of the original comic is a masterstroke in character design. I know most people are fond of the live-action makeup and costumed version of the spooky family, but I think animation is a prime one-size-fits-all medium for the family. It also helps that all of the characters have little details and character movements that make them stand out. I’ll never get over the fact that Wednesday Addams has noose-shaped pigtails. That’s easily one of the funniest details of the entire film. It’s a delightfully spooky and cartoony-looking film, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

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Speaking of the family itself, I don’t think you could have asked for a better cast. Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloe Grace Moretz, Finn Wolfhard, Nick Kroll, and Bette Midler are perfect for the film. While I have some issues with who gets the spotlight, I really adored the interaction between the family members. They feel like a family, and they still carry that spirit of “we are odd, but who cares. We are awesome!” If I had to pick an MVP for the film, I think I would say Wednesday Addams steals the show. Chloe’s dry and slow delivery of the dialogue makes her a laugh riot. She has the best lines and the best scenes. I also enjoyed the scenes with Grandmama and Gomez as well. While there are some issues with the comedy in the film, a bit of that dark comedy is sprinkled throughout it. I’m even interested if I missed a few visual gags when I was first watching it. I found myself laughing and chuckling pretty consistently during the film, maybe not as much as The Angry Birds Movie 2, but I was still laughing pretty often.

Now then, we got all of the positives, and middle-of-the-road stuff out of the way, and now, we get to the parts I didn’t like. Unlike many films that have different issues, or issues that people can’t seem to agree on, you can count me as on the side of “I agree with the main issue”. The main issue is that, for a franchise that is drenched in dark comedy from its premise to the dialogue, the film somewhat defangs the dark humor. There are darkly funny jokes here and there from the film, but it’s not like the 90s films that came out where you had them dumping hot oil on Christmas carolers. The humor feels unevenly spread through a lot of the family members, and that’s a shame that they took a bit of the bite that the franchise is known for. I also felt like it was uneven concerning who the story wanted to focus on. Wednesday Addams gets most of the time onscreen, while the rest of the plot involving the family is not as exciting. I get the themes of discrimination and being okay with who you are, but it doesn’t go far enough with the ideas. It’s a shame, because discrimination is a major issue that we have to solve. Even the villain is a touch on the weak side. She has a terrible (in a good villain way) plan, but again, it’s not taken far enough.

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I also wish the animation was a bit punchier. I don’t know if they were told to not go crazy, but like the humor, it could have had more teeth to it. Either they needed more time and money, or they didn’t know how to go a bit further. It’s disappointing because the team is mostly the same people that made the controversial Sausage Party.

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It might not have the fangs of the original source material, but I still found myself falling for the charm of The Addams Family. It could have used punchier and darker jokes, but it’s a fairly harmless film. Plus, it did well enough to get a sequel. Hopefully, they can improve upon everything that the first film is faulty with. Now then, next time, we shall end our spooky month with a review of Zombillenium.

Thanks for reading the review! I hope you all enjoyed reading it! If you would like to support my work, make sure to share it out, and if you want to become a Patreon supporter, then you can go to patreon.com/camseyeview. I will see you all next time!

Rating: Go See It!