Disney’s film entertainment division really need not turn all their past animated hits to live-action spectacles. That said, Dumbo is the latest and while it looks terrific in a post-World War I America setting, none of the backstories matters. Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell) comes home to his two kids, Milly (Nico Parker) and Joe (Finley Hobbins) who have been living at the circus. Prior to being sent off to fight for his country, the father was part of a circus act–a headliner.
Before anyone can yell, “It’s showtime!” enter the elephant’s mother and the birth of a big-eared baby pachyderm. The CGI is decent, but the emotional performance is hit and miss. Unlike Gollum, and other animated critters, who have graced cinema in the past, to convey fear and grief is only as good as understanding the creature itself.
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