“Smallfoot” (2018)

This film strikes a well-kept balance between entertainment and poignancy. The themes that this film tackles are surprisingly complex for a children’s film, and it doesn’t feel like the material’s been dumbed down. It takes a smart and nuanced approach with its message, exploring certain characters’ motivations, and making it clear the filmmakers understand what causes the cycle of bigotry and fear. The film’s humor is mostly spot-on and the characters are decently defined and likable. Unfortunately, the film doesn’t divorce itself from certain kid’s film clichés, which was disappointing considering how smartly written the rest of the film is. But for all its faults, the rest is intelligent and entertaining enough to make this a delightful treat for both kids and adults.

Rating: 4/5

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