Wish

November 22, 202360/1006 min
Starring
Ariana DeBose, Evan Peters, Chris Pine, Alan Tudyk
Written by
Jennifer Lee and Allison Moore ( written by) Chris Buck
Directed by
Chris Buck and Fawn Veerasunthorn
Run Time
1h 32min
Release Date
November 22nd, 2023
Overall Score
Rating Summary

          Of the many songs that have been in countless Disney movies, The one I’ve always found the most profound is “When You Wish Upon a Star” from 1940’s Pinocchio. For me, that song is, and has always been, everything Disney wanted to become – a place where ‘dreams come true’. That is why I find it odd that we are just now getting a movie where wishes play such a prominent role. Nonetheless, here we are over 80 years later, but will this wish be of the good or not-so-good variety?

Somewhere on an island in the Mediterranean Sea sits the Kingdom of Rosas. It is here where King Magnifico (Chris Pine) and Queen Amaya (Angelique Cabral) have created a place where people can feel safe. Magnifico also obtained the power to grant wishes, but it is he who chooses which ones to grant. You see, each person who resides in Rosas must give their wish to Magnifico to keep it safe, something that, once done, they don’t even miss. Everything seems to be right in Rosas, but the king is in need of a new apprentice, and for Asha (Ariana DeBose), that seems to be in the cards. The interview process is going well; I mean, she and the king even sing a duet. But soon, Asha learns a truth that will shake her to her core. It seems Magnifico never intends to grant most of the wishes, as he deems them not safe. With that knowledge, Asha looks to the stars for guidance and makes a wish, where a star appears to help grant it. Now it is up to Asha to help give everyone else their wish back and the hope that comes from it.

Written by Jennifer Lee, Allison Moore, and Chris Buck, the latter also directing with Fawn Veerasunthorn, Wish is about as formulaic as can be. The good thing is that this formula works, as Disney has been using it to tell tale after tale as old as time. What sets Wish apart, though, is the magnificent look, as it is one of the best-looking animated blockbusters you will see. The immersive visuals  makes you feel like you are in a fairy tale book as you swim in its beautiful watercolor look. The look of the film pretty much sums up the essence of Disney, and thanks to a choice in the aspect ratio, screams for you to see it on a big screen to soak in all of its brilliance.

Wish is your pretty standard Disney animated movie but also sets a new bar with its animation. While starting slow, once the star appears, Wish becomes a much more amusing tale to watch unfold. It’s also a nostalgic scavenger hunt, as it is filled with Easter eggs and winks to the 100 years of Disney animation. All in all, Wish is a good entry into the Disney catalog, as it is stunning to look at. Where it trips up is with its script and quite a few of the songs that don’t always work. Nonetheless, Wish is a valentine to Disney animation and will remind all of us just how powerful wishing upon a star can be.

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