Big Hero 6

Firstly, I enjoyed this movie, I’m not quite sure which demographic it was aimed at (as many as possible I suspect) but it worked. I’ll get thje negative out of the way first. The World of Big Hero 6 is a Japanese San Francisco called San Fransokyo. This is my issue. I spent the first few minutes of the film trying hard to forget Philip K Dick’s “Man In a High Castle” which was set in a post-WWII environment where the axis powers had been victorious and among other things was the Japanese governed west coast of America. Once I managed to get that behind me, I was able to sit back and enjoy the film.

This is a Disney production of Marvel characters and is essentially a similar movie to Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) which also gave us a new screen introduction to an all new breed of super-heroes. This is the first of the Marvel characters to be released as an animated movie in this current reboot of all things Marvel. Disney developed software for the graphics and it has to be said the graphics here as good as they get.

Brothers Hiro (Ryan Potter, Supah Ninjas 2011) and Tadashi Hamada (Daniel Henney, the Last Stand, 2013) are parentless orphans living with their aunt. Young Hiro, at 14 is a technology genius who I spends his time developing fight-bots much to his older brother Tadashi’s objections. Tadashi himself is no slouch and it enrolled at a special robotics class at the San Fransokyo Institute of Technology. Tadashi takes Hiro to his lab in the hope of inspiring him. In the course of the visit he meets Tadashi’s friends and professor who inspires him to enter a competition to gain entry to the course, even at 14.

Hiro designs revolutionary micro-bots which he presents at the exhibition to great reaction, however the exhibition hall goes on fire which resulted in Tadashi being killed trying to rescue the professor.

Mourning Tadeshi’s loss Hiro realises that Tadeshi’s medical robot “Baymax” (Scott Adsit St. Vincent, 2014) is actually in the house with him. Activiating Baymax results in the discovers of Hiro’s micro-bot which he thought were destroyed. The microbots are revolutionary in that they can be controlled by mind-control.

After finding the microbots it is obvious that there is trouble afoot. Baymax, thinking Hiro needs the company of Tadeshi’s pals from the Lab calls them, which is just as well as Hiro is trying to escape the masked villain. Together using Hiro’s super genius they design super-hero weapons and gadgets reflecting their areas of expertise. Like with Guardians the individuals on their own are far less than the synergy of the group. Fred T.J. Miller is the “mascot” of the group who is a spoiled rich kid who essentially funds their experiments. Then there is Go Go (Jamie Chung, Premium Rush2012) the speed merchant and Wasabi (Damon Wayans Jr. The Other Guys, 2010) the giant of the group who is also a hypochondriac, who are supported by Honey Lemon (Genesis Rodriguez, Tusk, 2014)who creates the sticky coloured paint bombs. Hiro’s upgrading of Beymax helps things along.

As with any superhero plot the team goes after the masked villain (James Cromwell, Still Mine, 2012), gets a bloody nose, regroups and then we have the big show-down. Nothing new here. As standard as the plot is, the script actually supports it well and provides us with a good story. If you are a fan of the Marvel reboots then you will enjoy this. Nothing too heavy but not childishly light.



The trouble with being a Disney/Pixar creation is that a lot is expected of the output.  Some critics have said this movie is light on plot while others have said some of the background animation is too good…too good! well that’s all as may be. The truth in my opinion, is that they have again produced a kids’ movie suitable for adults. The story line will appeal to kids while keeping adults entertained, the script will appeal to adults while keeping kids entertained.  I saw this movie with two friends, both admitted to watery eyes at various stages during the movie, me, I laughed a lot.

So what about the movie? It is based on a Scottish king Fergus (Billy Connolly, Mrs. Brown, 1997) with a proud and correct queen; Elinor (Emma Thompson, The Remains of the Day, 1993) , a rather willful 16 princess; Merida (Kelly MacDonald, Intermission, 2003). The opening scenes are of the family picnicking celebrating a young Merida’s birthday, only to have an infamous bear attack.  The movie then moves to about 10 years later, the King as it turns out, lost a leg in the attack, burt has gained many years of story telling embellishing what happened on that day. There are also the three young princes. These are a interesting plot tool, providing some of the best humour and convenient plot devices when needed.  Merida is now 16 and must have a husband found for her from amoung the clans, the clans arive at the castle to win her hand, she chooses an archery competition, which she then enters and well wins. All kinds of chaos ensue and ultimately Merida runs away after arquing with her mother and ends up in the cottage of a wood-turning witch (Julie Walters, Mo 2010) who gives the girl a spell to change here mother. THe spell is administered and it does change her mother; into a bear.

What follows is a voyage of Merida finding a solution, growing closer to her mother and ultimately saving the day (it is Disney after all). There are some excellent comedic moments scattered throughout. Was the plot suitable for adults? Yes, it was not overly taxing but highly entertaining. The overall movie works with some speed and manages not to sag in the middle, end result we were kept entertained till the end. The soundtrack is also quite good, I might have to look into a CD

This is a cartoon aimed at kids but with adults firmly in mind.  There are a couple of kilt jokes which while predicted were well executed.  The scenes in the great hall firstly where the suitors are introduced and later when all are fighting are both excellently executed and quite funny, little things like the characterisation of Fergus’ hounds were much appreciated.

Rating 8/10, nothing is perfect – for the first few minutes every time I heard the princess’s name being called I was put in mind of a certain piece of French but; C’est la vie!