I actually have no clue what the title of the movie is other than that it includes the words “Legends,” “Guardians,” and something like “Gahoole.” It’s a ridiculously long title that may or may not have “Owls” in it.
The easiest way to describe the movie is to compare it to other relatively well known ones cause it basically it has many common elements. It takes some of the basic character structure from Star Wars, places it in a Lord of the Rings backdrop, then changes everyone to Owls. You have a young hero and his rival1 brother who become orphans and willingly split up early on, hero befriends some random characters who become his crew, and later gets a powerful yet eccentric teacher who teaches him to
use the force trust his gizzard.
I guess there’s some Nazi Germany in there too, the evil owls call themselves “the pure ones” and oppress the lesser owl races. It’s not color based at least…but the good king and queen, the evil queen, and the hero all happen to be white.
Anyways then there’s a bunch of fightin’ and super slo mo with the owls in helmets and metal claws and other weapons, good guys win, happy ending, etc. I’m mixed on the slow motion cause it seems to be used a lot, on the other hand with the way a lot of films are these days I’m thinking the other option would’ve been incomprehensible SHAKY CAM, which is one of the worst elements of modern cinema. At least with slo mo I could tell what the hell is going on…for the most part. It can get kind of confusing when you have various colored owls on both sides all with helmets and sharp metal objects all fighting together. At a certain point you have to ignore figuring that out and just think “them’s some impressive fightin’ owls.”
Speaking of modern cinema, I saw this in IMAX 3D. The 3D works pretty well for the most part just because the subject matter tends to be owls in flight with naturally huge background depth, or just any other large backdrops of some sort. On the other hand there’s some WOO OBJECT CLOSE TO YOU stuff going on here and there, it’s not too blatant like the old days, it just isn’t really subtle either. Avatar had one or two of these moments (I think they were leaves and a gun barrel), where it seems pretty natural but at the same time feels jarring. On the plus side they made up for all of those annoyances with the credit sequence, one of the best simple blatant uses of 3D that I’ve seen, it was really awesome.
One last thing of note are some other reviews I’ve seen, a recurring theme among them seems to be that they think the movie might be too (one or more of the following): violent, complex, dark, serious, and many other similar adjectives2. It’s ridiculous!
All the possible major violence is hidden away out of view or reduced to slow motion blades slicing across each other. It wasn’t that complex, a lot of kids understand Star Wars and this was simpler than that. I don’t know, maybe kids these days are stupid cause parents are teaching them to be stupid. “This is too hard for you, here’s a chew toy instead!”
It might be kind of dark at times, but even the first dark element in the movie is lightened up almost immediately. The good village is cheery as hell and probably gets more screen time than the evil one. There’s a music montage with happy avian related lyrics!3 This was nothing compared to Toy Story 3.4 Bambi’s mom getting killed before her eyes would blow these reviewers’ minds.
Basically, the kids are all right.5
Rating system guide