It’s a “wing-man” (pun intended) role reversal adventure! Spies in disguise is filled with lessons on acceptance & teamwork, sprinkled with witty humor and thrilling action scenes that will make you forget you’re watching and animated film.” – Meg Harrell
The 2019 Geekly Retreat invited me to screen Spies in Disguise in the Walt Disney Animation Studios Theater! A group of high level Entertainment Bloggers and I were the first to see Spies in Disguise in its completion.
The Directors (Nick Bruno and Troy Quane) were gracious enough to bring us the freshly finished film. They introduced the movie, sat and watched it with us and then hung around to discuss the movie in detail.
They let us know that even the day before we arrived, they were still tweeking scenes. So we were the first ones in the world to screen Spies in Disguise and talk to the Directors about it! It was fascinating to hear their complicated animation process and the secret insights to adding strong themes into Spies in Disguise.
They also hilariously revealed that even after 4 years of directing – sitting in front of us was the first time they sat in a “directors chair”.
Spies in Disguise
The premise of the movie in a nutshell is: Will Smith’s character “Lance” and Tom Holland’s character “Walter” are complete opposites. Lance has swag and Walter is a total dork. Through a short series of unfortunate unintentional events, Walter turns Lance into a pigeon! This hilarious duo is forced to team up on a mission that is critical to the fate of the world.
For the full plot and incredible casting of this movie, CLICK HERE TO READ THE OVERVIEW
I really enjoyed this movie and plan to bring my kids this Christmas. For my full review, click here to read: 5 Lessons of Acceptance in SPIES IN DISGUISE | Movie Review
“Spies in Disguise” opens in U.S. theaters December 25, 2019.
Lessons of the Movie
The character who you think is the “wing man” gets his role flipped over and over! Each character is taught to accept their current situations and the people around them. The weird kid grows up and shows that his “weird” is what the world needs more of. It validates the acceptance of embracing those who are different and seeing your difference as strength.
Spies in disguise also has a heavy message on needing each other and teamwork. “Together we can find a way to stop the bad.” This is a direct quote!
Even though this is an action movie, there are plenty of examples on how non-violence is more effective. Justice can be served without violence.
Verisimilitude of the Animation
This is one of the best animated films I have ever seen because of the quality of the animation! It was visually stunning!
Troy Qane, one of the directors explained to us how complicated it was to create floating eye brows on the pigeon. They make Will Smith trapped in a pigeon seem so realistic. It feel like a man trapped in a pigeon and not just another one of the birds. It’s a very distinct difference to the other animated animals in the film.
Nick Bruno offered us the advice that if we were ever to create an animated film – don’t do floating eyebrows! He said it was one of the most difficult details I had no idea how detailed and cumbersome it was to make a good animated film!
Each character was created to fit their personalities. The characters have very distinct silhouettes. Once the character was created, they animated their clothes, facial expressions, gait, posture and even color shades to portray their personalities in an unspoken way. You can almost tell what kind of personality each character has subconsciously as you watch them onscreen.
The scenes were also color grated for the mood that was encompassing the scenes. If the scene was supposed to feel safe and happy, they made the colors and sun shine in a softer light.
But when there was action or villainous moments they changed the light source and color scheme to evoke different feelings from the audience.
One of the best parts of the animation (in my opinion) was the crisp editing. The scene transitions were impeccable when creating suspense or even comic relief. They got the timing perfect!
The way this movie was filmed felt so real. They digitally built the scenes and then moved the camera inside of the set to feel so authentic. I left like I was watching a Bond movie but with a ridiculous pigeon.
You probably won’t notice all these details but you’ll definitely feel it!
Hilarious Director Cameos
I’m glad I got to meet the directors, Nick Bruno and Troy Quane before watching the movie. There are a few scenes in Spies in Disguise that introduced some silly characters. As soon as these characters started speaking, I WAS SURE they were based on the directors!
These scenes are knee-slapping hilarious moments! I hate to give away anymore than this but PLEASE watch this film and keep an eye out for 2 supporting characters who are amusing and adorable.
(There’s a video game coming out based on the movie! It’s called Spies in Disguise: Agents on the Run!)
So what do ya think? Are ya coming with me this Holiday season to see Spies in Disguise?