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Friday, 23 August 2013

Planes

I am always a skeptic when it comes to a new director handling a big banner movie.  More from a perspective of hope.  Hope that the underdog doesn’t fail.  And if the movie is an animation one then a lot of you already know my sentiments.  It hasn’t been a great year for the genre till TURBO came along and blew our pants off.  Well, I would have expected nothing less than this response from Disney.

Klay Hall gives you an absolutely adorable one with Planes.  Not in his debut but after one which wasn’t really spoken about till kingdom come, Klay Hall gives us an extension to The World of Cars – Yep, Planes is a subset of that wonderful world that Disney unleashed on us around 7 years back.

In many ways, Planes is similar to Turbo.  And in many ways, it is also similar to Cars.  Planes is similar to Turbo because it is a story of the world telling you that you cannot do something and yet, your passion for that goal gets you to achieve it.  So if a snail can win an Indy 500 then why can’t a Crop Duster Propeller Plane by the name of Dusty Crophopper (Dane Cook) think of winning the round the world race?

It is similar to Cars in terms of characters.  We have a Mator-like character in Chug (Brad Garrett) and a one that is the equivalent of the Hudson Hawk in Skipper (Stacy Keach).  However, we do not have a Sally but we do have an increased emphasis on the sub-continent with a fling with Ishani (Priyanka Chopra), a bright yellow, sexy looking, rear propeller driven aircraft.  For good measure there is some A R Rahman music to ensure believability (definitely something that I thought was cute but a tad over the top)

“Planes” is not short of any thrills through the 90 minutes.  The journey moves from New York to Iceland through the Atlantic Ocean at sub-zero temperatures.  Then to Deutschland, India, Nepal (where the most exciting tunnel sequence comes in that propels Dusty into the lead), Shanghai, Mexico (across the Pacific) and back to NY.

The dialogues are cute and sometimes corny but thoroughly enjoyable.  Stuff like, “You were built to seed, not speed” when The Green Tornado takes a jibe at Dusty.  Or Bulldog (John Cleese) saying, “I don’t cry. I am British”.  And of course a slight jibe at India when Ishani claims that Tractors are revered in India because at the end of the day we are all recycled as tractors.  And of course, “Dusty La Vista baby”.

The attention to detail is amazing.  It is the small points that make Planes a superb movie to watch.  For e.g. the countdown at the final leg when Dusty gets a penalty is in Spanish and not English.  Some superb characters make the movie thoroughly enjoyable.  My favourite character would be El Chupacabra (Carlos Alazraqui) who cannot get enough of his cheesy lines to pick up Rochelle (Julia Louis-Dreyfus).

I got goosebumps when the Planes lined up for take-off.  I am quite certain you will too.  It is just the magic that Disney creates.  Maybe it is that magic that will see Planes through at the Academy Awards.  Because from where I stand, there is very little to choose between Planes & Turbo.  May the best one win I say.  8 on 10.  Don’t miss it.

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