Get ready to let your imagination and childlike spirit soar in Disney’s newest live action film, DUMBO! This movie is full of love, magic, and a message dear to my heart. As soon as I heard this film was being directed by the one and only Tim Burton, I knew it would be special. Burton has an incredible eye for bringing a story to life. The costumes, set design, and color pallete all work together to create this magical world. There is something mysterious going on amongst the glitz of the circus, and Burton shares that beautifully.
I wanted to explain the PG rating. The children in the film, Milly (Nico Parker) and Joe (Finley Hobbins), are dealing with a father who has come home from war, and a mother who has recently passed away. This is touching because it draws the family together, but it can also be really hard for kids to watch who may be going through something similar. With Dumbo’s mother being taken away and Dumbo being used to draw attention to the circus, the kids want to stop the mistreatment of the animals. Disney is very clear to say that no wild animal should be kept and caged for entertainment. An important thing for all to hear.
In the midst of losing their dear mother, and having their father, Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell) back from a traumatic war experience, Milly and Joe, are on their own a lot. Milly wishes she could use her brain to help the family instead of putting on a show. My, what a mighty brain she has! With the sniff of a feather, the baby elephant with the giant floppy ears can fly! Of course he learns to believe in himself, and not just fly, but soar!
When the very successful, yet kind of creepy V.A. Vandevere (Michael Keaton), finds out about the flying elephant, he has to have him! Vandevere convinces circus owner Max Medici (Danny DeVito) to bring Dumbo and the rest of the circus crew to Dreamland. Medici is promised fame, forture, and success. Holt soon discovers that Dreamland is hiding all kinds of darkness, and is indeed too good to be true. An epic plan to save Dumbo and his enslaved mother from the grips of Dreamland ensue. With the help of the circus family, I can say there is indeed a happy ending!
The movie delivers a mix of nostalgia and new adventures. I love that the message of the original Dumbo, and the new live action one, is still strong today. If you believe in yourself, and embrace what makes you different, you can soar!
See Dumbo the flying elephant in theatres everywhere March 29th!
Dumbo is Rated PG for child-parent separation, animal abuse and a catastrophic fire. Running time: 2 hours 10 minutes.