By Fabian Camacho
On December 21, 2022, DreamWorks’ latest film, “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish,” released in theaters in the United States. The movie features Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek and Harvey Guillen as Puss in Boots, Kitty Softpaws and Perrito, respectively. Several other big names make appearances throughout the film and it makes for a fun and diverse cast. After seeing the movie, I am prepared to share my thoughts.
First, let me just say that this movie’s writing is phenomenal! I went into the theater not really expecting much but I was quickly blown away. The story of rebirth is one that has been told several times, but in this instance, it stands out well. Puss has fallen into his last life and refuses to accept it. Thus, he seeks out The Wishing Star so that he may live on. On his way he encounters friends and some foes such as the Lobo (played by Wagner Moura) and Big Jack Horner (played by John Mulaney). The Lobo makes for a great antagonist and is constantly on the hunt for our hero. He is the complete antithesis of Puss and absolutely steals the show with his frightening and imposing presence. The tension the wolf brings, along with the sheer villainy that is Jack Horner, makes for a great duo of antagonists. Puss’ friends also bring a lot to the table and they all share a great chemistry with one another.
For a movie rated PG, it actually dives into some pretty deep topics such as death, acceptance, and learning to live for yourself, and I think that is impressive given the rating.
Visually, this film is just stunning. After the release of “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” with its unique blend of 3D animation paired with hand-drawn details and a comic book aesthetic, many animation studios gained the confidence to release more stylized works. I believe that “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” is a beautiful result of this shift. Every frame is filled with detail and contains a watercolor brush-stroke like texture throughout. The colors are vibrant and when paired with the brush effect, they truly make this film look like a children’s book come to life. At moments the framerate drops in order to allow the audience to truly soak in the action and at others it increases to make sequences smoother. I think that the visual style of this movie is stunning and I am excited to see what else DreamWorks puts out in the coming years.
There is not much I can say while avoiding spoilers so I’ll leave it at that. For the first time in a long time, I can’t really think of any flaws that have to do with the film. Everything is a hit for me and it makes me so happy to see that animated movies are starting to become more sought out. This was the sequel that nobody asked for, but the sequel we absolutely needed. After giving it some thought, this gets a strong 9.5/10 from me. It isn’t quite my favorite movie, but I absolutely enjoyed it and recommend it to everybody.