Puss in Boots

In DreamWorks' animated "Shrek" franchise, the unexpected popularity of "Puss in Boots" was a welcome surprise. Instead of merely a walk-on, the producers could smell a profitable spin-off, so here is the prequel which tells us how it all began. Because this is produced by DreamWorks, we enjoy an entertaining PG-13 story, terrific production values and an audience pleaser from the get-go. The 3D effects are nicely done, almost worth the extra cost.

Our little orphaned Puss, in order to help his adopted mother, sets off on a quest to find the goose that laid the golden egg. Actually he's after some magic beans... Or... Oh rats! It's too complicated to go into here, but suffice it to say, our favorite gato hits a few snags along the way.

Of course, we have a lot of amigos to help:
  • Antonio Banderas ("Haywire") is our eponymous orange tabby, resourceful, macho and (trying to be) trustworthy.
  • Salma Hayek ("Grown Ups") is Kitty Softpaws (she's been de-clawed), a tough but oh so gentle, little gray and white pussycat. She's also a bit of a flirt.
  • Zach Galifianakis ("Due Date") is Humpty Dumpty; with friends like this, who needs... Oh, you know... (...but I liked that ingenuous little sprinkle of freckles...)
  • Billy Bob Thornton ("Faster") is Jack (of Jack and Jill notoriety). This dastardly duo blasts around the frontier in a wagon pulled by a team of javalinas.
  • Amy Sedaris (lots of TV) is Jill, Jack's better (?!) half. They are after the goose that laid the golden egg (see above).
I loved the Latino-flavored soundtrack, the flamenco dances, the swash-buckling sword fights, the dash across open country from a cat's-eye level, and, above all, being amazed by the subtle nuances displayed on each character's face. Today's animators are brilliant, they know how to capture emotion, speech, and movement, all true to each personality.

Children will get a big kick out of the story and the action, while adults will appreciate the artistry and the humor. ¡El gato con botas es gran diversiĆ³n!

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Here is a link to a preview:
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