Thelma The Unicorn Movie Review: Animated Musical Comedy Has Simple, Effective Message About Being True To Yourself

The family film follows a farm pony who changes herself completely to realise her dreams of becoming a singing star. Read our review of the animated feature now streaming on Netflix.

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Thelma the Unicorn

Critic's Ratings

starstarstarstarstar

3

Animation,Comedy

Release Date

May 17, 2024

Duration

1 hr 38 mins
Thelma The Unicorn Movie Review Animated Musical Comedy Has Simple Effective Message About Being True To Yourself
Thelma The Unicorn Movie Review: Animated Musical Comedy Has Simple, Effective Message About Being True To Yourself

About Thelma the Unicorn

In the Netflix film, Thelma the Unicorn, an ambitious miniature pony figures out that if you want to succeed in life, you don't have lose your own identity. The quirky comedy features Alabama Shakes singer Brittany Howard as the voice of Thelma the pony who goes an important journey to know what's real and what's not. The musical is co-directed by Jared Hess and Lynn Wang and feels like an accurate representation of the contemporary music industry as well.

Thelma The Unicorn: Plot

Thelma (voice of Howard) and her farm friends, Otis the donkey (voice of Will Forte) and Reggie the llama (Jon Heder) form the band, The Rusty Buckets. They lose their big shot at stardom at the music contest Sparklepalooza. But when an accident transforms Thelma from an ordinary brown pony into a striking pink, glittery unicorn, there's no stopping the talented singer from becoming a star. But along the way, Thelma realises the trappings of fame aren't what they seem, and friendship is a true gift in life.

Thelma The Unicorn: Writing and Direction

Directors Hess and Wang keep the energy high in the feature from the moment Thelma becomes a unicorn; the same goes with the fluid animation of the human and animal characters. Jared has also co-written the screenplay with his wife Jerusha Hess; the story is adapted from Aaron Blabey's children's book. Thelma the Unicorn is an apt satire on the music business from the packaging of artists to the use of auto tune in songs. At one point, Thelma signs up with Huge Sellout Records (pun intended). The underlying message of the film is also about being true to oneself, and it's an important lesson for kids and adults to see, at any age. The filmmakers also pack several jokes about fashion, fame and farm life, appealing to all sections of the audiences.

Thelma The Unicorn: Performances

The film is a showcase of the character of Thelma and singer Howard nails it with her effervescent performance, both on and off the fictional stage. She also adds vulnerability to Thelma's insecurities of not being accepted as her true self. Forte and Heder add sweetness as Thelma's farm friends, while Jemaine Clement is truly hilarious as Vic Diamond, a talent agent who dumps his original client and signs the famous pony. Fred Armisen's take as viral influencer Danny Stallion is quite inspired and his 'real' voice will make you laugh out loud more than once.

Thelma The Unicorn: Critique

While the animated content in theatres has been sparse these past few years, there's been enough good stories that have arrived on streaming platforms. Netflix has been leading the charge with stories like Nimona, Orion and the Dark, and now Thelma the Unicorn. The optimistic tale packs in a lot in its lean one-hour, 38 minutes running time. But the film's heart is in the right place and with its quirky humour, Thelma the Unicorn is sure to entertain.
End of Article

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