My favorite part about the storyline is its traditional creativity. The story relies on magic, dreams, and music to mesh together purity and ingenuity. There are creatures that terrified me and I am 22 years old! Honestly if you want to bring children to this film, I would be prepared for the nightmares that they will have afterwards. Two evil twins are brilliantly designed to remind audiences of the horrifying imagery in past films. They act as a sort of homage to Kubrick's twins in The Shining. Yes, I just compared this child-friendly animated film to one of the most horrifying films of all time. Don't worry, it's not quite as scary but there are some aspects that could provoke a child to wail in the theaters. I will say that aside from the horror story aspects, there are some twists that are easily predictable from the beginning of the film. Kids may not see these twists, but adults will most likely realize their foreshadowing early on. Still, the story is epic and told in an interactive manner to keep us grasping at the next step.
I would be completely amiss if I did not discuss the use of music and art in Kubo and the Two Strings. Within the first twenty minutes of the film, we see the creativity behind the project. Kubo picks up his musical instrument a plays a song that tells a story. Origami art flies around the screen, battling each other for glory and honor. The animation is smooth and seemingly flawless; yet, it is unique and attractive. New creatures strike us with swords, wings, and paws throughout Kubo's journey to redeem his father's pride and defeat his extended family. Along with the original music and sleek animation, we hear familiar voices in new roles. Charlize Theron (Mad Max: Fury Road, Hancock), Rooney Mara (The Social Network, Her), George Takei (Mulan, Star Trek), Matthew McConaughey (Interstellar, The Wolf of Wall Street, Dallas Buyers Club), and Ralph Fiennes (Harry Potter, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Schindler's List, Skyfall) all contribute their vocal chords to Kubo's epic adventure. All of their voices give away who they are, but their characters are unusual parts for the individual actors. However, I did get a mix of Ramses and Voldemort for Fiennes's character, but it was fun to hear nonetheless. Credit must also be given to up-and-rising star Art Parkinson (Dracula Untold), who plays Kubo. This role gives him more to do than his role in Game of Thrones, but let's not even go there for now...
The Bottom Line: Kubo and the Two Strings is the most respectable animated film since Miyazaki's genre-dominance.
Image credit: http://www.geeksofdoom.com/GoD/img/2016/01/kubo-and-the-two-strings-laika-530x297.jpg