As Ipe tradition has it, we have been going out to see a family movie on every Black Friday since 2010. We spent a very relaxing and unproductive Friday at home, watching tv, playing games, and recharging. We had a quick dinner of Thanksgiving leftovers, then drove out to see Big Hero 6 (2014). The film came out a few weeks ago, so we were a little concerned about getting good seats. Although we left late, there were plenty of open seats in the theater when we got there 10 minutes before showtime. I don’t know if it’s gotten worse, but there were 30 minutes of trailers and commercials, so the film didn’t actually start until 7:30 PM. That’s a long time to sit and wait, if you ask me.
[Some minor spoilers are about to follow]
The film is based on a not particularly well known Marvel comic book series of the same name. The main star of the film is Hiro Hamada, a young teenager who lives in an alternate universe of ours, in a West Coast city that is a mash-up of San Francisco and some Japanese city, named San Fransokyo. It’s an interesting version of San Francisco with heavy Japanese thematic elements. Hiro is a child genius who graduated high school at age 13, but has been wasting his incredible intelligence on ‘Bot Fighting’. His older brother Tadashi has been trying to encourage him to do something more productive, but to no avail. Finally, Tadashi gets through to him, and Hiro becomes interesting in going to college to further his research into robotics. Sadly, his brother Tadashi is killed in an accident.
In his grief, he unintentionally activates Tadashi’s big robotics prototype, Baymax, a large non-threatening robot designed for healthcare. The two of them bond after Hiro realizes that the ‘accident’ that killed Tadashi was no accident. They go out together, and meet some friends, and become this ‘Big Hero 6’ super-powered team
[End of the minor spoilers]
The film is very well drawn and it starts out a bit slow. There’s a lot of build-up of the two brothers Tadashi and Hiro. The film runs 102 minutes, but the heart of the plot probably doesn’t start until almost 45 minutes in. The film doesn’t have the same heart of a Wreck-It Ralph or Up, but it’s still pretty entertaining. Definitely worth seeing. Baymax as a robot is pretty funny. There’s plenty to enjoy as a child or parent. It’s a Marvel movie, so definitely hang out in the theater until the end for the post-credits scene. There’s no set-up for a 2nd move, per se, but it’s a nice little scene.