Film Review: ‘UglyDolls’ is Animated Fun For Kids and Everyone Else

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CHICAGO – The animation formula, for entertaining both kids and adults, is to never make the story too serious, and “UglyDolls” gets it right. The obvious moral lesson of “accepting yourself” is covered with great animating, memorable characters, peppy songs, and a sly sense of humor. In essence, made for the whole family.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

And what a voice cast, a virtual here and now! Kelly Clarkson, Janelle Monáe, Nick Jonas and Pitbull step from the 400 Awards Shows they do every year, and connect right through their characters. They do add a transitional modernity to the celebrity voiceovers, Steve Carell can’t live forever. The fabric of the animation is literal fabric, as the UglyDoll world is constructed as a cloth-like material world. The morality of the story is easy to surmise, but still important … even in a place called the Institute of Perfection … there is room for the imperfect, and it takes the UglyDolls to tear down the wall. This is a bright and breezy 90 minutes at the flickers.

Moxy (voice of Kelly Clarkson) is an optimistic “UglyDoll” that lives in Uglyville, dreaming of being adopted by a child in the “Big World.” This fact is well known to the townsfolk, especially Moxy’s friends Mayor Ox (Blake Shelton), Ugly Dog (Pitbull), the Baker (Wanda Sykes) and Babo (Gabriel Iglesias). They’d love to help her, but they don’t believe that the Big World exists.

After getting a shift in attitude, Moxy and her gang decides to risk going backwards in a tunnel where they all came from (shades of Freud). They end up at the Institute of Perfection, where dolls are trained to live with their adopters. When Moxy enthusiastically joins in, she is rebuffed by the perfect leader Lou (Nick Jonas) and helped by a another perfect member, Mandy (Janelle Monáe). Together they will all learn the lessons that need teaching.

‘UglyDolls’ opens everywhere on May 3rd. Featuring the voices of Kelly Clarkson, Janelle Monáe, Nick Jonas, Blake Shelton, Ice-T, Pitbull, Wanda Sykes, Jane Lynch and Gabriel Iglesias. Written by Allison Peck. Directed by Kelly Asbury. Rated “PG

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “UglyDolls”

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All That Jazz-Hands: The Cast of ‘UglyDolls’
Photo credit: STX Entertainment

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “UglyDolls”

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