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Nov 16, 2018
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Courtesy photo/Disney

‘Zootopia’ is keeper

“Zootopia” was an amazing movie. From its wonderful graphics to its social commentary, viewers are entrenched in a world so alike to theirs, they will forget that it is a rabbit and a fox teaching them about the ways in which their world, and our world, function.

The movie centers around a rabbit whose lifelong goal is to become a police officer. The universe the movie takes place in is one where mammals have created their own utopia, where all species live harmoniously under the “Mammal Inclusion Act.” Against all odds, Judy Hopps prevails and becomes the first rabbit cop, who runs into the sassy fox, Nick Wilde.

The movie follows Hopps and Wilde as they traverse a world that is polarized between “prey” (90 percent of Zootopia’s population) and “predator” (the remaining 10 percent). While uncovering a scandal that was rocking Zootopia, Hopps reveals the city’s slogan – Where anyone can be anything – does not actually embrace the differences between predators and prey, it only divides groups and hinders them from seeing their individual value.

This movie is not just a kids’ movie. While its bright colors and cheesy characters appeal to children, this movie was targeted at parents who are bringing their children to the theaters. It provides a commentary on the current social climate and plenty of puns about “mutton chops” and “dumb bunnies.”

The movie does what stories do best, they teach us something about the world we live in and leave us with a goal for the future. It weaves fictional elements into the reality that many people in America are living — a life afraid of each other.

In a time when our society is facing harsh realities about police brutality and racial inequities, movies like “Zootopia” are teaching our next generation about our experiences in ways we may not know how to talk about, let alone teach just yet.

The greatest thing about the movie is that it is plausible. It represents multiple ideologies ranging from parenting styles to work ethic, and manages the characters real reactions to each other. The relationships within the movie are believable and almost make the audience forget that a fat cheetah is working the front desk at the police department.

The script was well-written, and the story was easy to follow. It holds all the great elements for a timeless kids’ classic. The only thing left unexplained by the story is what the heck the predators eat. We must assume everyone is a vegetarian or they have made some amazing tofu kibble.  

Through the lenses of rabbits and foxes, predators and prey, Disney accomplishes what even our presidential candidates can’t — coherency and understanding of the current social politics.

The voice actors Ginnifer Goodwin as Hopps and Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde brought to life the characters that made this movie what it is — exceptional.

Go see this movie. Laugh at the sloths that run the DMV. Keep your eye out for Shakira’s special appearances, but most importantly, have the discussion afterward about putting aside the fears of past and embracing a world full of differences worth cherishing.

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