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I try to change genres every now and again. I do not want to always see action or R-rated movies. Sometimes we all have to embrace our inner child, and “Big Hero 6” is a good movie for kids and adults alike, with fun visuals and a story that seems simple, but is dark and heart-wrenching at its core. It won the Academy Award for best animated feature film and the Kids’ Choice Award.
In “Big Hero 6” we step into the mind of Hiro Hamada, who lives in San Fransokyo (a beautiful mix of San Francisco and Tokyo) with his aunt and his brother, Tadashi. (His mother and father, as in many kid movies, are dead.) A genius who graduates high school at 14, Hiro sees college as a waste of time, preferring a life of bot-fighting. But his brother Tadashi convinces him to apply to the school he attended, the San Fransokyo Institute of Technology, run by Professor Robert Callaghan (James Cromwell). He does this by showing off a new invention at the local science fair. All goes well until there is a freak accident that kills the professor and Tadashi, leaving Hiro with his brother’s best invention, Baymax, a medical robot.
Weeks later, Hiro stumbles across a man in a Kabuki mask who might be connected to the death of the professor and Tadashi. Hiro, along with Baymax and his cohorts Wasabi (Damon Wayans Jr.), Go Go Tamago (Jamie Chung, who played Miho in “Sin City”), Honey Lemon and Fred, swear to capture the masked man and bring him to justice.
The scenery is sleek and vibrant. At night, the city dons neon colors everywhere, illuminating the streets and towers, and in the morning, the small towns have a peppy vibrancy that jumps off of the screen.
The voice acting is superb. Ryan Potter is terrific at conveying an emotional Hiro, working well with his brother Tadashi, played by Daniel Henney. Scott Adsit of “30 Rock” fame does a fine job as the robot Baymax, projecting a caring voice that goes from hilarious to poignant as the movie progresses.
Some of the minor roles fall into their own cookie-cutter category of nerd, preppy girl, slacker, etc. But the ones who stand out are Hiro and Professor Callaghan, who weave a story of loss and how one can be destroyed by it. I felt Hiro’s struggle and depression when his brother died, and related to his obsession to find the killer.
“Big Hero 6” comes with charm and a deep story that is perfect not only for kids, but the whole family.
Joshua Wilson is a senior at Evanston Township High School