As Raya and the last dragon, Avalonia, the strange journey spell directly on Disney+ in France while it was released in theaters in the United States. This time, however, it is not the health crisis that is the reason for this commercial strategy, but the media chronology, disney preferring to skip the theatrical release here rather than wait too many months to offer it in SVOD. This feature film directed by Don Hall (Raya and the last dragon, Moana: The Legend at the End of the World, The New Heroes) is it at least worth the detour?
A family film, which is watched quietly at Christmas on the screen of his home in streaming.
Avaloniathis is the name of this mysterious world where our hero lives, Searcher Clade. His father, Jaeger Cladedisappeared years ago after venturing alone through the insurmountable mountains that surround the remote valley, in order to uncover the secrets that lie beyond. Search preferred not to follow him, in order to exploit the Panda, a resource-rich plant that could help its community survive. But while the plant seems touched by an evil coming from the depths of the earth, it will have to venture into its unknown depths with the leader of his people, his old explorer friend Callistoas well as’Ethanhis son, and Meridianhis wife, who followed him in spite of himself.
Basically, this 61st “Disney animation classic” offers us a very traditional journey. The exploration of this underground world à la Jules Verne, whose colorful and surprising artistic direction is reminiscent of the procedurally generated universes of No Man’s Skyhas nothing very original or especially exhilarating, even if aesthetics between sci-fi cinema low-cost of the 50s and the comic book nice to see. The same applies to reheated humorous springs (punchlines in a crisis situation, amusing 3-legged dog, funny humanoid being with a voice straight out ofAnimal Crossing) or the umpteenth speech on the acceptance of oneself and one’s own.
The thinking about parenting, through a character lost between animosity towards his father who almost abandoned him and his deep desire not to reproduce his mistakes on his son, however offers a look that differs a little compared to other adventures centered on teenagers . The same-sex relationship depicted in the animated film, the most highlighted in a production disney, a it has the merit of trivializing the thing without making it an interesting arc. The overall narrative scheme remains without great surprise despite its dynamic pace and regular action scenes, if not by its ecological approach, late, but appreciablewithout going so far as to shake consciences either.
Punctually funny without ever being hilarious, touching without being poignant, polished without being sublime, Avalonia, the strange journey never manages to go beyond what it is: a family movie, who watches himself quietly at Christmas on the screen of his home in streaming, and who will not go down in the annals, for lack of passages or memorable characters. Not being able to see it in theaters will in any case not help to brand it in our minds. It might be time for disney to change narrative architecture, 3D technology or tone in the dialogues to finally offer something really new.
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Avalonia, the strange journey is available now at Disney+ : you can subscribe to the service for €8.99 per month or €89.99 per year.
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REVIEW Avalonia, the strange journey: an anecdotal animated film that perhaps deserved no better than Disney+
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