REVIEW: Kubo and The Two Strings (2016)

New in movie theatres this weekend is Kubo and The Two Strings, the latest release from Laika for Focus Features. I was incredibly fortunate to have won passes from Crystal Clear As Mud to see it in advanced release last night.

Filmed in 3-D stop-motion animation, Kubo and The Two Strings is the tale of a young boy whose gift for storytelling sends him on the adventure of a lifetime and reinforces the power of love, family, and family ties.

Equally stunning is the soundtrack, composed by Dario Marianelli; featuring a beautiful and haunting cover of the late George Harrison’s ballad While My Guitar Gently Weeps by Regina Spektor.

Charlize Theron and Matthew McConaughey stand out as Monkey and Beetle, respectively, allies who travel with Kubo as he seeks out the three pieces of magical armor that once belonged to his late father, Hanzo, a legendary Samurai warrior, in order to resolve a long-standing feud. Ralph Fiennes as Kubo’s maternal grandfather – Raiden the Moon King – stirs up trouble, evoking in the viewer memories of his previous turns as Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter films.

I cannot say enough good things about this movie, although by the end of it I was weary of the characters’ constant dialogue about “stories.” It is not a film for very young children, due to scenes of violence.

Kanga’s Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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