Director: Zack Snyder
Writer: John Orloff/John Collee
Producer: Zack Snyder/Zareh Nalbandian
Starring: Jim Sturgess/Geoffrey Rush/Ryan Kwanten/Helen Mirren/Sam Neill/Hugo Weaving
BBFC Certification: PG
Duration: 97 minutes
If you thought that this movie would be a nice little movie about lovely, talking animals in a forest having funny and cute adventures, think again! Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole is an animation with talking animals, that much is true, but it’s in no way childish as it’s surprisingly quite dark and violent. Soren and his brother Kludd are two young owls, seized by the evil Metalbeak and Nyra. They soon learn that their captors are planning a war against their own owl brethren and realise that they not only have to get back to warn their own of the coming trouble but to get ready to fight. The movie has some absolutely fantastic and quite realistic animation with gripping action scenes and some beautiful, colourful backgrounds along with nice-looking characters, you can tell that they paid attention to the detail of the animation and the visuals. However it’s unfortunate that some of that said attention wasn’t paid fully on the story. The story is your usual, ordinary story of good vs evil with some intense subjects such as betrayal, slavery and belief thrown in. It’s a decent story and it’s surprisingly quite dark in some places and there are a couple of impressive moments thrown in but overall, it doesn’t exactly offer anything new as most of it has been done before, however this does it with style.
Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole has some impressive animation and a decent story but the best thing about the movie, apart from the visual, is the voice acting. The cast was terrific as the owls and their voices really suited their characters. Ryan Kwanten and Jim Sturgess were great as Kludd and Soren but the overall voice that was perfect was Helen Mirren, who provided her voice for Nyra, an evil owl. Nyra is already quite evil and the owl herself looks quite menacing but Mirren’s voice added that little bit extra evilness to the character. The characters were well done and they all had their equal share of screen time as well as some great character development. We see the weak and daydreaming Soren turn into a strong and independent character, ready to fight for what he believes in. Director Zack Snyder has done a great job in making this movie, however I could not help but feel that some of the story was cut into separate parts and that some things were missing. There were also some unanswered questions, although they may not be so important to the story. Overall though, Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole is a good animation with decent storytelling and is probably worth watching for the amazing visuals alone.
The movie is great and it does have that captivating quality about it and has more to the animation than just flying owls fighting each other. It also has heart and emotion and tackles some serious topics, which I think is important for an animated movie. Not only can you enjoy it but you can also take something away from it, just like you should with all movies. I would recommend you watch Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole at least once. If not for the story, then for the visuals and the impressive battle scenes as they are truly magnificent to watch. However, I would not recommend this to a child under the age of nine as it really is surprisingly quite violent and dark, with scenes including neck-breaking, slashing and stabbing. Of course, you don’t see any blood but the scenes could still frighten a small child. It’s surprising the movie is PG.