Tuesday, July 19, 2016

I want to try everything...

This post is part of Nathaniel's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" series in which the participants must post a single image from a movie he or she deems as the "best shot" for any particular reason.

Zootopia is probably still my favorite film of 2016. And how could it not with its resonant timely message, fleshed-out leads with excellent chemistry, and staggering amount of world building.

There are so many great things about this film, but it's its world building I'd like to focus on because I sincerely believe one of the reasons this movie succeeds is the attention to detail the filmmakers had not just on the story and the characters, but the actual city of Zootopia itself. With 12 unique eco-systems and countless of species of mammals of all shapes and sizes living and working together within its city limits, the city of Zootopia would've been a real challenge for anyone to envision let alone actually show on screen. And the filmmakers did it in a matter of minutes (less than three in fact) in my favorite sequence of the movie set to the film's key song "Try Everything" by Gazelle (aka Shakira).

Judy's train ride into Zootopia, from her humble Bunnyburrow, was a genius way for the film to introduce this truly amazing metropolis not only to the main character, but to us. Judy essentially acts as the audience surrogate with her wide-eyed wonderment at the glittering city from a distance and then at all of the diverse and beautiful regions--Sahara Square, Tundratown, Rainforest District--and animals as she gets closer. And when she gets off the train, there's even more to see--hamsters using tubes to get around, hippos drying themselves after coming out of the water, giraffes getting drinks via air-tube system.

So I wish I can just cite the entire sequence as all of my favorite shots, but I know I had to pick just one. I ended up choosing a shot that captures a great moment.

Best Shot

It's when Judy passes through Rainforest District and it starts to rain and she looks up, clearly beaming at where she is at that very moment, soaking up the entire experience. That's pretty much how I felt watching the film and now all I want to do is watch it all over again. Plus I just love her super expressive face and the interplay of all the blue and greens with the rain in the background as the "camera" sweeps up. Just masterful animation work all around.

Bonus: My roommate picked her favorite shot as well! And it's giving me a lot of weird feelings regarding inter-species relationships!

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