There’s more than a slight irony that Strange World is released on the same
week that Disney CEO Bob Chapek was sacked as the company, under his
leadership, has lost its way in recent years. More interested in making
political points than doing what they do best, that is telling a story,
Strange World encompasses everything that has been wrong with Disney under
Chapek’s leadership. With a lack of originality, we’ll come to that later,
and a green agenda, which isn’t a bad thing but do we really need to have
it in a Disney animated film, Strange World is one of the poorest films
from Disney in a very long time.
Jaeger Clade (Dennis Quaid) and his son Searcher (Jake Gyllenhaal) live on
a planet called Avalonia and it’s on this planet that Searcher discovers a
plant that’s the answer to all the planets energy problems and he calls it
25 years later Searcher has made a name for himself by harvesting Pando and
turning it into a fuel resource for Avalonia. One day Callisto Mal, the
leader of Avalonia, shows up in a giant flying ship to tell him that Pando
is dying across the planet and they need his help in trying to find out the
Finding that the problem might be at the bottom of a giant sinkhole
Searcher, his wife Meridian (Gabrielle Union), his son Ethan (Jaboukie
Young-White) and the family dog, who is the best thing in the film, head
into the planets core in search of an answer.
Watching Strange World would give you the impression that whilst thinking
up the idea for the film someone has shown the creative team James
Cameron’s Avatar for the first time as it has, from the name of the plant
to the blue characters to the vegetation, more than a passing resemblance
to Avatars Pandora.
It’s hard to see who Strange World is aimed at, besides eco warriors, as
there’s very little to entertain adults and young children might find the
story slightly confusing come to that so might adults.
With Lightyear also being a big disappointment earlier this year hopefully,
with Disney back under the guidance of Bob Iger, the next Disney film might
be better than Strange World.