May 31, 2013
"Epic" is such a big title that you would expect an "epic" film to own it. Unfortunately for this "Epic", only the artwork was epic, but the story was hardly of epic proportions.
"Epic" is about MK, a teenage girl whose father is some sort of mad natural scientist who clings to the belief that there are tiny men living in the forest. He has devoted his whole life to this belief to the detriment of his relationship with his daughter. One day, MK (Amanda Seyfried) witnesses the assassination of the fairy Queen Tara (elegantly voiced by Beyonce Knowles) by the dark forces of death in the forest, led by the evil Mandrake (Christoph Waltz), symbolizing . Before the Queen died, she endorses a magic pod to MK, shrinking MK to fairy size herself. This pod had to be brought to the glowworm keeper of scrolls Nim Galu (delightfully voice by Steven Tyler) at a certain time, in order for the forest to continue its cycle of life with a new queen. So we follow MK quest along with her new-found friend friends, a senior leaf-knight leader Ronin (Colin Farell) and his renegade teen soldier Nod (Josh Hutcherson), a snail and a slug.
The star of this film is the animation style which was very elegant in details. That scene alone when the Queen (looking as exotic as her Beyonce voice) was being carried on her leaf carriage landing on a pond with water lilies, and the lily pads converging so the Queen can walk on the water was sheer beauty. The action sequences were also very exciting and well-executed. You can see the difficulty of the artwork when it comes to small details in the vines, the water, the bird feathers, truly awesome. While they spend so much efforts on the forest characters, the human characters though were not well done in my opinion.
However, the story itself was very generic. It seemed like we have seen all of this before in various films that had the environment as its focal point. Of course there was also a romance side plot that seems to be part of the formula in these films. There were also the funny sidekicks, in this case the snail and slug. These two were rather hit and miss, I cannot even recall their names. I was only truly laughing during that scene when these two were crawling on the ceiling as MK and Nod were hanging from their eyes. I liked that father and daughter connection part, quite touching. Good to see this theme again so soon after it was also tackled in "The Croods."
So overall, this movie is just average. This high quality of artwork deserved a better, more mature story to showcase it. The story here was so simple and childish in tone, yet there were very scary images of the evil characters and the Queen dying from an arrow which would scare very young kids. This film is not bad, don't get me wrong. But unfortunately for me, this was not memorable at all. 5/10.