The peaceful and friendly bull

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By 2018-01-14

By Nirupa Mohan
Ceylon Today Features

The latest adventure fuelled, fantasy film, Ferdinand, released recently. It's a film by the man behind Rio, Rio 2, Ice Age: The Meltdown and several other films, Brazilian director and animator Carlos Saldanha. The movie is adopted from The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson.

The movie is made in collaboration with Blue Sky Studios, 20th Century Fox Animation and Davis Entertainment, with the tagline, "Built to fight, Born to Love". Ferdinand managed to receive positive ratings with 71% featured on Rotten Tomatoes, 6.8/10 on IMDb and 4/5 Common Sense Media.

The story centres on the title character, Ferdinand, voiced by Colin H. Murphy as a calf and later by John Cena as a fully grown bull. Ferdinand is a gentle, friendly and peaceful young bull in rural Spain, who with other young bulls lives in a training camp, where a bull's only goal is to be chosen to take on the matador at a showdown.

When Ferdinand's father is chosen for the showdown but never returns, Ferdinand escapes and is adopted by a young girl, and lives a happy life on a small farm. But things turn upside down when his size, coupled with an incident that causes property damage at an event, gets him captured and is sent back to the training camp, and that's when the story begins to take focus. Ferdinand now has to find a way to escape the camp and if possible take his old and new friends with him or stay back and face the famous bullfighter, El Primero.

The film manages to deliver beautiful animation, filled with colour that complements the plot, with scenic layouts that add momentum to the poster perfect heartfelt moments. The film is both dramatic and fun, filled with random humour that's scattered throughout from start to finish, with mild jokes that add value to the story and doesn't take away from the plot. The motivated film drenched with creative twists adds even a dance off with the bulls going against arrogant horses, adding a sense of team spirit
The much anticipated film stays focused on featuring Ferdinand as a character who is more than just another bull, keeping an open mind that just because he is large in size and people judge him based on appearance. It doesn't make him who he is, and that he is different from the others on the farm and is not in any way a fighting bull, and would rather spend time smelling flowers.
The film features the perfect life and then takes it away with everything going wrong but manages to stay enjoyable with new characters as Ferdinand makes new friends and evolves. This is a fun film for all ages, that's easy to watch.

The film stays centred on being peaceful and not getting confrontational as much as possible, and manages to naturally point out that it's important to work as a team, and that teamwork is the only way that can help them all survive and escape to live a better life that's not plagued by dangerous bullfights as their only purpose in life.



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