James King, Arts & Entertainment Correspondent
Abominable is about as fuzzy as the marketing would lead you to believe. I am a big fan of animation, though the pickins have been a bit slim for animated movies I have wanted to see this year and admittedly, this one wasn’t on the top of my list.
The poster certainly was one of the more interesting bits of advertisement that stood out, with it literally being covered in white fur and the titular yeti peeking out at you. The trailers made the movie look a bit generic and the story didn’t look that fun.
Though, in all honesty, this movie pleasantly surprised me. It had a surprisingly fun story about the main character Yi saving up to travel China only to be caught up in the antics of an escaped magical yeti. The story is a bit generic, if you’ve seen something like E.T. or any other movie where a vaguely magical being has to escape the “man” then you’ve seen this movie. The movie pulls this plot off well though. I didn’t find myself laughing out loud at this movie, but it was funny enough to get a chuckle here and there.
The visuals of this movie and the setting are where this movie shines. The character designs are a little flat, but the scenery in this movie is amazing. From lush jungles to mountains to deserts, swamplands, and tundras, it’s fun to see the characters travel to the next set-piece, made even more interesting by the yeti’s magical powers which keeps you guessing on how his powers will factor into the next set-piece. The setting of China adds to this feeling because it’s exotic and different enough to keep the movie from feeling too familiar. While I wouldn’t call the depiction of China accurate, it is a beautiful depiction.
What sinks the movie is the plot, which is really predictable to a fault. I know when the characters are gonna run, get caught and fight. Even the villains of the movie were unbearably generic and almost cookie cutter. The heroes didn’t fare much better, though they at least had more interesting characteristics. Except for the main character, the characters came off as flat.
This was not a movie that was really on my radar, but it’s a movie I’m glad I saw. It’s a fun little romp through China with some fun set-pieces and jokes. This is the kind of movie that feels like it will be a hidden gem re-discovered years from now. A fun little movie to watch with your family as you cozy up in a fuzzy blanket to keep yourselves warm in the winter months. A little on the predictable side, but still a fun watch that will give you and your family warm feelings every time you sit down to watch it.