DIGITAL HD REVIEW: Spies In Disguise
Spies In Disguise was released on Digital HD this week. It is the first Blue Sky Animation project under Disney.
Wacky hijinks ensue when the world’s greatest spy Lance Sterling (Will Smith) and nerdy spy gadget creator Walter Beckett (Tom Holland) have to join forces when Sterling is framed for a crime he didn’t commit. All of this while Sterling was accidentally turned into a pigeon and having to save the world. Rounding the cast are Ben Mendelsohn as Kilian, Rashida Jones as security force agent Marcy Kappel, and Reba McEntire as director Joy Jenkins.
While the story sounds crazy and is not without its holes, it is actually a very sweet one and with a message that I think is relevant to today's younger audiences. Through Walter, we learn to look for creative solutions to violence. I found this to be a refreshing look at an issue without making it feel too preachy. How can you not win with a weapon that distracts you with glitter and kitties?
I thought that the animation and character design were on par with other Blue Sky Animation films with a similar stylized feel along the line of The Incredibles. I enjoyed the voice performances of Smith and Holland, particularly Holland who has a way of inflecting his voice that is perfect for animation. He proved to be a great voice in Onward and the same goes for this movie.
Sadly, with such stiff competition as Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Jumanji: The Next Level and Frozen 2, Spies In Disguise under performed other Blue Sky Animation films, currently placing it at the bottom, which is a shame because it really was a nice film that I was happy to have re-watched again in Digital HD format.
Bonus Feature Review
I really enjoyed the "Super Secret Spy Mode" which allows you to watch the film like a commentary, but features all kind of Easter Eggs in real time. I wish more films would do this, especially Disney and Pixar films that are always loaded with Easter Eggs.
The "Infiltrating Blue Sky Studios" was a nice look into the newest animation studio under Disney's belt. It's put together like a spy is infiltrating the studio gathering intel on the creative process into Spies In Disguise. It was nice getting to see inside a different animation studio that we're used to for a change. I look forward to seeing what else the studio puts out n the future.
The "Top Secret Guide To Gadgets" is as it sounds. It highlights all the wonderful tech used in the film.
The feature "Lunch Break" is special to the digital release. It is basically a short that also doubles as an ad for Audi. It features Lance and Walter on a high speed chase through Washington, DC during their lunch break. It's a cute and fairly thrilling short. I enjoyed it.
The rest is fairly standard stuff for animated film bonus features, including music and galleries.
Super Secret Spy Mode
Infiltrating Blue Sky Studios
The Top Secret Guide to Gadgets
“Then There Were Two” Music Video
“Freak of Nature” Music Video
Making the Soundtrack “Then There Were Two”
Making the Soundtrack “Freak of Nature”
“Lunch Break” (Digital Exclusive)
Gallery: Color Keys and Moment, Paintings, Character Designs, Locations, Props and Gadgets Concept Art