U/A; Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Cast: John Cena, Adam DeVine, Paul Feig, Kate McKinnon, Gina Rodriguez, Mark Valley, Daveed Diggs, Gabriel Iglesias, Bobby Cannavale, David Tennant
Director: Carlos Saldanha
Ian Southwood adapts the Robert Lawson and Munro Leaf authored 1936 short story 'The Story Of Ferdinand' about a pacifist bull and turns it into a film starring the voice talent of wrestling superstar John Cena with Carlos Saldanha helming the show. A giant but gentle, sensitive bull, Ferdinand (John Cena) must find a way to break free from his captors and return home to his family.
The film has an anti-bullying theme and is very child-friendly in its expanse. Ferdinand escapes from the Casa Del Toro as a calf and gets sent back there as an adult hulk. He, of course, was not meant to be a Matador's plaything, so he persuades Lupe the Goat(Mckinnon) and the other bulls(voiced by Bobby Cannavale, David Tennant, Anthony Anderson, Peyton Manning and Tim Nordquist) to help him get out and go back to being Nina's pet at her flower farm. Of course, Nina's sheepdog (Jerrod Carmichael) is not amused. The assorted characters also include a trio of wacky thieving hedgehogs (Gina Rodriguez, Daveed Diggs, Gabriel Iglesias) and three snotty dressage horses (Boris Kodjoe, Sally Phillips, Flula Borg).
Though there's nothing logical or plausible about Ferdinand's experience of the world around him, what stands out here are the ameliorative messages of camaraderie and bonding that save the day. This simple tale of a bull who would rather sit in the shade and sniff flowers than face off with matadors in the ring, works up a voice for the alienated while making an adventure romp it's mainstay. Director Carlos Saldanha (“Rio 2”) displays a visual style (in character design and the backgrounds) that plays out as malleable and immensely eye-pleasing. Quite a few characters in the fray but they all have a reason to co-exist. There's hope for everyone in this world if they are daring enough to search it out themselves. It's basically a people story presented in animal form with a solid stream of comedy and songs interspersing the narrative –thus allowing for fairly vigorous entertainment!
Watch 'Ferdinand' Trailer