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Puss in Boots Review

by: sothis
January 15, 2005

story 7/10

Puss in Boots screenshot Puss in Boots is the tale of, well, Puss in Boots, the swashbuckling cat. We are introduced to our furry friend when he is being banished from the land of cats for saving a mouse. As if this wasn't enough, several cutthroats of the feline variety are then sent to kill him! The assassination attempts throughout the film are simply the comic relief, however, and are not the central plot. Puss in Boots (Perro) runs across a house where three men live. The two older brothers are hoarding their deceased father's riches, refusing to share it with their younger and overworked brother Pierre. Various things occur, and suddenly, Perro and Pierre are thrown out in the cold, thus prompting their journey to a better land. They find themselves in a kingdom where the princess is soon to be married to the richest suitor of her choice, and Perro has a plan to get Pierre in the throne! Unfortunately, there's also an evil ogre type person who wants her for himself, much to her dismay.

Puss in Boots is definitely meant for children, and definitely shows its age. The story is fairly typical of children's stories: defeat evil bad guy, win the girl (that you barely know), and mix it all together with some comic relief. For the most part, Puss in Boots seems mostly like a reverse Cinderella, with Pierre being the poor pauper who wants to wed with royalty. It, like Cinderella, also have some fairly unrealistic tendencies towards love, such as falling in love with someone right away (and in this case, they are children, which makes it even more unbelievable), or getting married so fast. At first, I enjoyed the story and thought it was refreshing from the tons of Ghibli stuff out there (I'm sorry, I'm just not a Ghibli fangirl, and only like a few of the movies). It definitely plays out more like an American cartoon than anime, and at first had a nice mix of plot, comic relief (the cats), and wacky scenes. I'm not sure why, but after about 30 minutes I started becoming bored and less interested. The comic relief came to the forefront and dominated a lot of the movie, and the plot became less interesting for whatever reason.

Though this movie definitely wasn't aimed at my age group, I can still identify that this would be a great movie for the kiddies. The story will be simple enough (but still engaging) so children will stay entertained, and has enough comic interjection to make them not bored. I, personally, thought the story could have been a little more complex or interesting, and could have done without some of the comic relief (which wasn't that funny, really). The ending was also a bit rushed and could have been expanded.

animation 7.5/10

For a movie that was made in the late 60s, I'm extremely impressed. The animation and artwork was better than some things I've seen in the 80s! The colors were incredibly vibrant and vivid with dark shades of red, green, and blue. Much of the movie took place at night or in the evil Lucifer's castle, which resembled something Tim Burton would have created.

I loved the designs of the crows, who looked downright evil in a very cheesy sort of way. Lucifer looked a bit too human for me, but when he transformed into other animals it was humorous and entertaining. The rest of the human characters looked very typical for that time period, with minimal facial features and very round heads. Pierre definitely looked a bit too feminine, and the swashbuckling Perro was comical looking to some extent, but still interesting. There were no special effects to mention, but the fight scenes were quite well done for the time period. Lots of swordsmanship was shown, and various other fight scenes. I'd say the highlight of the movie was definitely the transformations of Lucifer.

sound 6.5/10

The audio was VERY old sounding and VERY aimed at children, which was totally appropriate given the movie. Lots of trumpets and other instruments, and plenty of synthesizers. The one aspect of the audio that I didn't enjoy was the nonstop singing, which seems to be prevalent in a lot of older children's movies. Like the recently watched Adventures of Horus, this got old after about two songs. Though I try to review from a non-biased perspective, it's hard to not mark down the score somewhat for disliking this so much. I can't make myself be an 8 year old to rate it any higher, but if you are a child, you might enjoy the singing a little more. I definitely enjoyed the voice acting, it was good across the board.

characters 6/10

The characters were definitely the weakest part of the film, in my opinion. Perro was definitely the most unusual and interesting, due to the fact that he was a talking cat with a sword! Pierre was wussy and feminine, and contributed pretty much nothing of use except to help out Rosa a little in the end. I still don't understand why Rosa would have been attracted to him, at all. The comic relief (the three assassin cats) were made to appear like children (with their mannerisms, etc), and this fit the tone of the series, but I felt they were overused. They also constantly screamed "MATTE!!!" ("wait!") which got on my nerves after 27 times sounding exactly the same, with 3 people screaming it at once. Lucifer was evil but we didn't know why, and really, the only thing we even knew about him was how he could transform. Yeah, I know it was aimed at kids so going into detail is usually a bad thing, but I would have liked to know a little more background about Lucifer. Had this happened, I would have felt more empathy towards Rosa or Pierre.

There were a number of secondary characters as well, including Pierre's greedy brothers who weren't on screen much and the seemingly brainless king. These characters contributed a small amount to the story as far as setting up the mood, but not much else.

I definitely felt Rosa and Pierre's blooming relationship was totally unrealistic and was stupid to begin with. I can't see the two potentially pairing up at all, especially since Pierre looks to be around 10 years old. In general, the characters were good at times, but a few of them soured the taste of the others.

overall 7/10

Overall, Puss in Boots is a great movie for kids, but that's probably about it. While some Ghibli films appeal to an older audience, I felt like Puss in Boots would only cater to the young. At first, I thought it would be one of my favorite children's movies from Japan, but as the comic relief became more and more invasive and the songs continued to assault my ears, I quickly realized this is one better left for the kids. If you decide to check this out, keep in mind that it's a classic, and that it's aimed at youngsters, and you might enjoy it a little more than normal. All in all, this is a fairly solid film for the target audience it was aimed at.

Anime Info

  • Movie (1 ep x 80 min)
  • 1969

When the loveable Perro was banished from the kingdom of cats (for the treacherous crime of saving a mouse!), his wanderings led him to the house of Pierre, a young lad who was mistreated by his greedy brothers. Thrown out in the cold, the duo then traveled to a great kingdom where they laid eyes on the princess Rosa, who soon would be wed to a wealthy suitor. Who best to marry her but ... the son of a poor farmer?! With Perro's help, Pierre might just stand a chance -- that is, if he can fool the royal family and defeat the evil Lucifer, who wants Rosa all for himself!

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About the Author

sothis's avatar

sothis

My fav genres include sci fi and horror, but you'll find a lot of obscure reviews from me too, given I watch a ton to add to the database. My new reviews are written a lot better than my old ones, so when in doubt, sort by date! ^_^ Enjoy, and I welcome any and all feedback.

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