I was expecting very little from Sing. That might be a weird way to start, but it’s true. After Illumination Entertainment’s horribly underwhelming secret life of pets I was not sure the studio could do more than minions and despicable me. The through line for illumination is comedy, all of there movies are comedies and they all do it differently. While minions was pretty innovative I found secret life of pets to be unoriginal. So it was a delightful surprise to find that this movie was not comedy at all.
Sing has a message that is easy to understand and screams intent. It almost seems to be a passion project about when hitting rock bottom the only way to go is up. The story is structurally sound and does a good job weaving all of the side stories together. You would think that so many stories to tell would detract from the overall story arc, but the way that the movie unfolds lends itself to a good viewing experience. Instead of doing a story about a rising star that fits one stereotype, this movie allows for all of them to be represented. You have the underappreciated, the shy, the over confident, the has been, and the one that doesn’t fit in with their family. It checks all of the boxes and even throw in the main show runner in for another perspective.
So with a clear intent, many characters to relate to, and not being a comedy, Sing was shaping up to be a pretty great movie. Now for the most part movies where people sing, apart from Disney movies, use covers of songs and this movie is no exception. One of the most successful movies that use covers is the Pitch Perfect series, and I really don’t like those movies. This brings me to another delight in that the songs sung in this movie are really nice. Since the actors did the singing themselves it also makes the display slightly more impressive as well. The effort that Matthew McConaughey puts in his performance is what champions this movie. He might not be loved now after his Lincoln commercials, but he really does a great job in his part here. There really isn’t much to say about this movie other than it’s really good.
In comparison to other animated movies that have come out this year, this is a close second place to my favorite all year. Since both movies have similar messages to a point, but the other wins out in a deeper message and more production value. This movie on the other hand might actually be more fun to rewatch than the other one though.
All in all, Sing was a really good movie that made me feel like this was someone’s dream project. I would definitely watch it again and it doesn’t rely on any story surprises that would diminish that experience.