DreamWorks and Netflix’s animated film ‘Orion and the Dark’ is winning hearts with its heartfelt tale of a young boy overcoming his fears. Written by Chris Butler, the movie takes inspiration from the storytelling techniques of Pixar, making it a delightful surprise for viewers.
The film opens with an engaging prologue referencing popular Pixar films like ‘Inside Out’ and ‘Up’. It introduces us to Orion, a timid boy afraid of almost everything, including the dark. Through a chance encounter, Orion meets the personification of his fear, the Dark, voiced by the talented Jaden Smith. Smith’s splendid vocal performance captures the essence of the character’s transition from gregarious to vulnerable.
The Dark, wanting to help Orion overcome his fear, takes him on an adventure to explore the night and understand how it works. Along the way, they meet charming characters such as Sweet Dreams, Sleep, Unexplained Noises, Insomnia, and Quiet, each representing different elements of the night. The film cleverly draws parallels to ‘Inside Out’ but maintains its own unique storyline, never feeling like a mere copycat.
A standout feature of the film is the inclusion of a story within a story, with an adult version of Orion narrating his encounter with the Dark to his daughter. This adds a twist of surrealism to the plot, which is expertly balanced by the emotional core of the narrative.
‘Orion and the Dark’ successfully combines sharp character design, engaging dialogue, and positive messaging to deliver an entertaining and heartwarming experience. It’s a testament to the talent behind the film that it manages to take familiar themes and make them feel fresh. With its release on Netflix, this DreamWorks and Netflix collaboration is sure to win over audiences of all ages.
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