Title: Puss in Boots: The Last Wish
Starring: Antonia Banderas, Salma Hayek, Florence Pugh, Olivia Coleman
Directors: Joel Crawford and Januel Mercado
Length: 100 minutes
A spin off from the hugely popular and long running Shrek franchise, Puss in Boots gets a sequel to the 2011 original. Directors Joel Crawford and Januel Mercado (Kung Fu Panda) have created a great visual style that is striking and colourful that is perfect for Puss in Boots.
Puss is down to his final life (of nine) when he hears of a magic wishing star (hence the title) that can restore his nine lives. He’s keen to get his paws on the star – but he’s not the only one after the magic McGuffin (an object or device in a film which serves merely as a trigger for the plot), Goldilocks and “Big” Jack Horner are also searching for it. Will Puss find it first? Will he get his nine lives? All will be revealed!
Salma Hayek is Kitty Softpaws and Harvey Guillén is Perrito the chihuahua, both impress. Additions to the cast include an array of talented actors including Florence Pugh as Goldilock and Olivia Coleman as Mama Bear, again, they naturally impress in their roles, both well respected actors.
Speaking of performances, I don’t know who this Antonia Banderas guy is but I think Puss is excellent. After several roles in pseudo-western films when he was younger, and a turn as Zorro, he was clearly purrfect for the Shrek films but it was only when he got his own franchise that he really got his claws into the character. As an actor his ability to evoke a variety of emotions from the audience, apparently effortlessly, is very impressive. He’s the standout star of course!
Joel Crawford’s direction is intelligent and often inventive and the pace for the full hour and forty minutes is well judged, maintaining momentum excellently with plenty of action and laughs along the way. The soundtrack by Henry Jackman is right for the film, although it does lack some of the big-name songs from the 2011 film.
I think this is an even more accomplished film then the original 2011 Puss in Boots film and this spin off of Shrek really has blossomed as its own standalone series of movies that has reached and at times even exceeded the heights of the parent franchise of films. This one will be keeping children (and adults alike) happy and will win over new fans as well.