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Pixar has spent much of the last several years enjoying the success that comes with making well regarded sequels to popular franchises. Of course, once upon a time Toy Story and Cars were brand new too, and so it's always exciting to see what the studio can do with a brand new idea. Pixar's next movie Onward is the first of what is expected to be several original concepts. The movie had its world premiere last night, and so we now have the first social media reactions to the new movie.
Somewhat surprisingly, opinions on Onward appear to be more split than we're used to seeing from Pixar. The studio's films seem to be almost universally beloved, and while nobody seems to be calling Onward a "bad" movie, there does seem to be a large contingent who just think it's...you know...fine. CinemaBlend's on Eric Esienberg was in attendance at the premiere last night, and thought, that, while it had some of the emotional Pixar magic we've come to expect, overall the film just felt lacking.
Onward, tells the story of two brothers, Ian and Barley, who live in a world where fantasy creatures exist in a modern reality. Magic exists, but it is not used, until the boys find the ability to use a spell to bring back their deceased father. What follows is a roadtrip movie as the boys race a ticking clock to get one final opportunity to see their father.
That's a pretty straightforward plot and it seems that's where some critics take issue with onward. Critic Kristen Lopez found the plot to be thin, though she does compare the movie to a very popular recent Disney animated movie, so perhaps Onward will still find its audience.
While Onward may not be an entirely perfect home run, that's not to say that there aren't those who absolutely loved it. Onward, as with many Pixar films, deals with some pretty emotional issues and so many in the audience may want to get ready to let the waterworks go. Critic Laura Sirikul found Onward to be incredibly emotional, and it's a safe bet she won't be the only one.
And then there are those responses to Onward that are much more what we expect to see when Pixar has a new film. While there might not be quite as many of those responses this time around as we're used to seeing, they're still out there. Mashable's Alison Foreman found Onward to be appropriately magical. Her only complaints had to do with the lack of trash unicorns.
So while Onward might not be quite everything that we expect from Pixar, a lot of that has to do with the fact that the bar for the studio is quite high. And there's still clearly a lot to appreciate about the new film, even if it's not quite perfect. Full reviews for Onward will be out next week, and that will give us a clearer picture of where critics stand. The rest of us will have our chance to see Onward when the movie hits theaters March 6.