Sing (2016)

Sing is a new animated release from Universal Pictures. It is a movie with music and singing, rather than an actual musical. I’ve been told recently there are pedantic people who make the distinction that a ‘true’ musical involves music, but the music is a part of the flow of the film, and it is used to express emotions of the actors singing, and, is usually is often not recognized as separate singing in the film. Sing is about performing music, and is therefore different. Just covering all bases here.

OK, now that’s out of the way, the basic story takes place in an unnamed city, presumably San Francisco. Animals live together in harmony. Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), a koala bear, owns and operates a failing playhouse that’s on the verge of foreclosure.  He comes up with one last, desperate attempt to drum up business, by holding a singing competition. Thanks to his aging, inept secretary, Miss Crawley (Garth Jennings), a lizard, the competition is announced with a much larger grand prize than Buster can afford. It draws a lot of interesting characters, such as Rosita (Reese Witherspoon), a pig who’s mom to many, many offspring, Mike (Seth McFarlane), a mouse, who’s a crooner in the style of the old Rat Pack (does that make him part of a mouse pack?), and Ash (Scarlett Johansson), a porcupine whose style leans towards thrash metal. There are many others, but only some are chosen for the competition.

This is definitely a good-natured kid’s movie, rated PG, however, it’s rather entertaining. The characters are rather fleshed out, and each has a good story, with something to prove. There is some danger involved, but nothing too wild, or even scary. It is a PG film, after all. There is humor, too. What impressed me most was the musical selection. It was pretty diverse, including some Sinatra, Beatles, and relatively current pop songs. You get the sense that the songs were chosen to distinguish the different characters, and it’s a nice blend of styles.

I rather enjoyed the film. I was also surprised that I lost out seeing it at one theater by showing up too late (it was sold out), and the next screening at another theater was pretty full, as well, perhaps due to the holiday.

The movie is available in 2D, and 3D, however, I don’t think there’s a need to see it in 3D.