Ferdinand, released December 2017 by Blue Sky Studios.
Having kids is great for many reasons, one of those is that you get to go to all the kids movies without looking like a weirdo on your own or having to borrow friends children.
Ferdinand is the story of a sweet bull; bred for bull fighting, he’s only interested in smelling the flowers and avoiding confrontation. After his Dad doesn’t return from a bull fight, Ferdinand runs away. He hops a train and ends up at the home of Nina. Here he is treated with love, he can smell flowers all day and he sleeps in Nina’s bed. He is in his idea of heaven. But when he accidentally destroys a market he is sent back to the very place he ran from. A place where the bulls have to fight each other, if they lose they are sent to the slaughter house up the hill. The bulls think this is all there is, they believe they can win their freedom. Ferdinand wants his freedom back, he knows they can’t win it, he knows he has to take it and enlists an odd assortment of friends to help him along the way.
I love the message in the movie. It’s ok to be different, “weird is the new normal”. I think its great for kids to see that. We went with our 4 and a 12yr old, they both got very different things out of the movie, but it was totally suitable for them both. They both enjoyed it, the silly jokes had the 4yr old repeating them all day and the 12yr old thought it was really sweet, so it gets full points for having something for everyone. It had all the typical themes for young children movies, it just didn’t go into any of them in depth. The goat Lupe, played by Kate Mckinnon, was the most irritating, creepy character I’ve come across in a children’s movie in a long time. I thought she was funny at first but then her constant flirting with Ferdinand was so off putting, the spitting stopped being funny after the 20th time and while I’m pointing out the negative’s – The German horses? What the fuck. Also the accents. All of the bulls were born in Spain, all of the characters where from Spain, why did they all have such different accents. I swear one of the bulls had an Australian accent. Don’t get me wrong, I thought John Cena was great as Ferdinand, I just found it really weird. There should have been more accents that represented where the movie was set. One thing I didn’t find weird, that I probably should have, was the dance off between the bulls and horses.. Yep, you read that right. It was pretty epic, one of the bulls twerked like a mofo, hilarious!!!
The movie was a great way to spend a couple of hours, it was colourful and looked good, the story was sweet and the music was perfect, it’s a 3/5 for me.
The biggest surprise with this movie was discovering that the point of bull fighting is in the end to kill the bull. How did I not know this? My naïve self thought that it was like a dance between the matador and the bull and once they have finished, they all go home. I had a very rude awakening. Its like a dance, I guess that’s the way some people see it, and the matador does all of his fancy moves, the horse riders, with their barbed spears stab the bull a few times to make him bleed, make him angry and slow him down and then after they have all made a pin cushion out of this animal, the matador takes his glory and stabs the animal. It’s fucking barbaric. How does this still exist? How is this a form of entertainment? I don’t understand. I know that it has a cultural significance, but that doesn’t make it ok. It doesn’t mean it should still be happening. I did a little bit of googling, as you do, when I got home and the information on the bull fighting and the other not so wonderful things that the bulls are put through for entertainment, it made me feel sick. Have a look, read about these customs, look at the pictures.
If one of the main points of the movie was to bring attention to the way these animals are treated, for me it worked. Well done, message received loud and clear.