SingTorontoToronto Film Festival 2016
Absolutely exasperated by all the X-Factors, Britain’s Got Talents and other talent shows? Take time to watch one more: Sing applies the singing competition format to an animal world, with delightful results and several guaranteed laughs. Garth Jennings signs a sappy but nevertheless winning film, animated by the same creators as The Secret Life of Pets and Despicable Me. Although the idea of singing animals isn’t exactly revolutionary, Illumination Entertainment has crafted a successful combination of lively tunes, loveable characters, and admittedly humorous gags that you won’t mind sitting through with the kids.
Committed showman – or rather, show-koala – Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey) attempts to save his theatre from financial ruin by using the talent show ruse to attract aspiring singers as well as a roaring audience. However, due to the clumsiness of his glass-eyed lizard secretary (voiced by Garth Jennings himself), Moon unwittingly promises a much bigger prize than he can afford. His open call rounds up an eccentric crew: a piglet housewife and mom of 25 (Reese Witherspoon); a gambling mouse bathed in 1940s style (Seth McFarlane); a teenage punk porcupine on her electric guitar (Scarlett Johansson); a gorilla who doesn’t want to be part of his father’s crime gang (Taron Egerton); and a shy elephant with the voice of a goddess (Tori Kelly). This is a rambunctious squad, each with their own personal troubles and reasons to win the inflated figure on offer.
A five-star cast lend their voices to these furry folks, providing a centre of gravity with their amusing characters. A clear plot allows room for side-splitting sketches, a hearty amount of slapstick to please all ages, and above all majestic choreography that deserves ovation simply for the animation work involved. In the final talent show, after an overload of setbacks, the fully expected happy ending holds all the fireworks, sparkles and impassioned performances of the most ambitious musical comedies. With a startling amount songs in 110 minutes, Sing brings many recent hits onto the screen – a move that will definitely speak to the younger audiences, but that works overall.
A chocolate-box tale that certainly appeals to sentiments in a very obvious way, Sing is nevertheless a sweet, fun film with a different level of animation, enormous sing-along potential and many entertaining stunts. In a few words, its immense level of cuteness is hard to resist.
Sing is released nationwide on 27th January 2017.
Read more of our reviews and interviews from the festival here.
For further information about TIFF 2016 visit here.
Watch the trailer of Sing here: