My Little Pony: The Movie Review

Facts about the My Little Pony Movie

My Little Pony: The Movie is a 2017 animated musical fantasy film based on the television series My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, which was developed as part of the 2010 re-launch of the My Little Pony franchise by Hasbro. The film was directed by Jayson Thiessen and based on a story and screenplay co-written by Meghan McCarthy.

The film was produced by Allspark Pictures and DHX Media, using traditional animation created with Toon Boom Harmony.  It premiered in New York City on September 24, 2017, and was released on October 6, 2017 in the United States and Canada through Lionsgate.

Michel Gagné joined the film as an effects animator on April 2, 2016, taking an eight-month hiatus from an animated Spider-Man movie made by Sony Pictures Animation.  The production crew used simple 3D modeling in Autodesk Maya as to determine camera locations, lens, and angles, rough lighting, character and prop placement, and which way the characters would be looking and expressing.   The Movie is expected to gross between $10 million and $17 million from 2,528 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $3 million on its first day, including $290,000 from Thursday night previews.

Casting of My Little Pony

  • Tara Strong as Princess Twilight Sparkle, a highly magical and intelligent alicorn who is Equestria’s Princess of Friendship, responsible for spreading friendship and harmony across the kingdom. She is also the leader of the “Mane 6” ponies. Rebecca Shoichet performs Twilight Sparkle’s singing voice.
  • Ashleigh Ball as Rainbow Dash and Applejack, two of the “Mane 6”; Rainbow Dash is a loyal pegasus with an adventurous spirit, and Applejack is an honest apple farmer pony.
  • Andrea Libman as Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy, two of the “Mane 6”; Pinkie Pie is a party-obsessed pony filled with joy and laughter, and Fluttershy is a kind yet timid pegasus who cares for animals. Shannon Chan-Kent performs Pinkie Pie’s singing voice.
  • Tabitha St. Germain as Rarity, a generous fashion designer unicorn and one of the “Mane 6”. Kazumi Evans performs Rarity’s singing voice.
  • Cathy Weseluck as Spike the Dragon, Twilight Sparkle’s young and faithful assistant.
  • Emily Blunt as Tempest Shadow, an embittered unicorn once known as Fizzlepop Berrytwist who serves as the Storm King’s second-in-command in order to repair her broken horn.On the development of the character, screenwriter Meghan McCarthy said, “We just arrived at this idea of a character who had come from Equestria, and had not had the positive experience that Twilight and her friends had. It felt like a good counterpart to our heroes was to have a villain who didn’t just not get friendship, but had a reason that she didn’t understand it.” McCarthy also called Blunt’s performance “a big influence” on how the character was animated in the film.
  • Michael Peña as Grubber, a wisecracking hedgehog creature and Tempest Shadow’s cohort. McCarthy said that Grubber “needed to be goofy” to counterpoint the “very straight-laced, hardcore” Tempest. Peña ad-libbed much of the character’s dialogue, with McCarthy saying, “You get Michael Peña in a recording booth, and you just are like, ‘Please just go and say funny things.’ He will be there for hours, just giving you all kinds of really great material that was not something that we had originally scripted!”
  • Liev Schreiber as the Storm King, the despotic, satyr-like leader of the storm creatures who conquers lands in search of powerful magic to control the weather. On his acceptance of the role, Schreiber said that, because of his kids’ exposure to his adult-oriented movie work, he wanted something more child-friendly for them to watch, noting his repertoire of violent, adult-oriented films. Comparing his character to Basil Rathbone, Schreiber said the Storm King “is prone to temper tantrums, and he’s a little crazy. He has a wide range of behaviors.”
  • Taye Diggs as Capper, a humanoid cat who is a cunning yet good-hearted con artist. Diggs, who was excited to appear in an animated film, says, “I’m very movement-oriented, so just looking at the way Capper is positioned, the expressions on his face, all enhances my performance. It’s really cool.”[1]
  • Zoe Saldana as Captain Celaeno, a humanoid parrot and jaded pirate captain who is relegated to the Storm King’s delivery service. Saldana says Celaeno “cares for her crew”, adding, “She’s a responsible, thoughtful, and empathetic leader. That’s a terrific, very poignant message to give to children about leadership – that it’s okay for you to want to be a leader as long as you know that the responsibilities that come along with it.”
  • Kristin Chenoweth as Princess Skystar, an excitable seapony and magically transformed hippogriff princess. Chenoweth said of her character, “Let’s just say she’s been locked up for a while and is longing for friends.” She joked that she dabbled in method acting for the role, making sure her hair was “on point for every recording session”.
  • Uzo Aduba as Queen Novo, the benevolent ruler of the hippogriffs-turned-seaponies, and Princess Skystar’s mother. The character is described by Chenoweth as “loving but also a little too strict and stern”. Detailing her role, Aduba says, “She wants to protect her group to the best of her ability, and wants to create a life of peace and stability. She doesn’t take any nonsense, and will do everything in her power to protect her family.”
  • Sia as Songbird Serenade, a pegasus and famous pop star in Equestria. The character’s design is modeled after Sia’s likeness

My Little Pony Movie Review

Without giving away to much from this story, I would like to say that I surprisingly enjoyed the film. The new animation was very sharp and creative.  You can tell a lot of work went into the character designs and backgrounds.  The designs were intriguing and I liked the new designs of the ponies later in the film.  What I also enjoyed about the film was the music. The music wasn’t overpowering and it was nice to see the main ponies sing as well as other characters.

What I didn’t like about the movie was the fast paced story line. The other characters throughout the film weren’t really developed and were thrown into the plot just because they needed the space. In the end, the characters were helpful but it would have been nice to see their characters transition from good to bad or vice versa. The ending was summed up very quickly and I expected more from the ending than what was presented. Throughout the movie, the audience was intrigued and there were a few laughs here and there. It was great to see different stars of the cast contribute to the film and many past characters from the franchise reappear. I expect more movies to come from MLP in the future but I don’t see this movie winning any top movie awards for this season. I give this movie, 2 sheldon’s out of 5.

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