Dean Shaari is a final-year filmmaking student at UNIMAS who enjoys Malaysian film, television and the stage. He gets into BoBoiBoy: The Movie with this review of the film.
Animonsta Studios and Grand Brilliance brought a bona fide hit to the table this year in BoBoiBoy: The Movie. It’s great news for the latter, which struggled at the box office last year due to a series of under-performing releases including Girlfriend Kontrak and Love Supermoon.
Based on animated kids television program BoBoiBoy, the film revolves around its titular protagonist — a primary school kid with superpowers who fights crime and an alien invasion in the fictional Pulau Rintis. Due to a habit of breaking his promises, friction surfaces between him, his companion Ochobot, and his superhero friends Yaya, Ying, Gopal and Fang.
Unbeknownst to the team, a bigger invasion is coming their way as the Tengkotak Gang, a notorious alien invader team is on the hunt for Klamkabot, which leads the team to a mysterious floating island above the sky.
BoBoiBoy: The Movie opens with a bang: there’s a chase scene featuring the Tengkotak Gang, recalling a pod-racing scene from a Star Wars film. It’s a clever kick off given the attention span of today’s children — young audiences can’t help but get drawn into the story right off the bat.
Cheeky moments are interspersed throughout the action-packed movie, keeping viewers and their families further invested into these characters. Chinese characters banter in Mandarin during a chase, while classic glam rock tune C.I.N.T.A. crops up during a romantic encounter.
The film’s attempt to have a Pixar moment (we won’t give too much away) works, coming across inspired by a particular scene in Disney‘s Wreck-It Ralph. It’s a fairly touching moment; expect manly tears from adult audiences.
One does not necessarily need to be a follower of the series to immerse themselves in the whole experience, as the writers have given time and attention to each character and their back stories.
In terms of visuals, the film looks better on the big screen — there’s more attention to detail as evident in texture, character design, and the layout of the glossy cinematic world of Pulau Rintis. Couple this with a Dolby Atmos sound mix and you have yourself a pretty decent experience at the theatre.
If there are problems with BoBoiBoy: The Movie the movie however, it’s that the film attempts to achieve too much in the span of ninety minutes. As a result, the pace in the middle portion feels hampered.
The film’s scoring, which features an updated BoBoiBoy soundtrack with additional help from Bunkface and D’Masiv, can also deter viewers from fully immersing in key moments of the film. Its voice acting can also suffer, as there seems to be a lack of actors on hand — for instance, the character of Yoyo Oo has a voice too similar to returning character Adu Du’s.
Despite its minor shortcomings, BoBoiBoy: The Movie breaks the monotony of Malaysian live action films throughout the year. Those who need a little fun for family and friends, be assured that BoBoiBoy can deliver in spades.
Don’t expect the leave the cinema without your inner kid pumped up and ready to conjure some superpowers.
BoBoiBoy: The Movie is currently in its third week at the cinemas.