ratbastard’s review published on Letterboxd:
Elf brothers 'Ian' (Holland) and 'Barley' (Pratt) conduct a spell to bring their lost father back to life for one day. The spell is botched, and only half of their father is brought back. The brothers set out on a grand quest to properly reunite.
A visually striking, fantasy / adventure / comedy from Pixar.
A film of two halves. A jumbled and boggy opening, unravels into a rollicking emotional adventure. Two brothers of contrasting sensibilities confront their losses, and embark upon a grand quest which ultimately brings them closer together. Calling into themes of discovery, brotherhood and acceptance. The magical land in which they inhabit has largely evolved in a technologically-driven, modern world. The quest allows the brothers to connect with their true nature.
The story rattles along at a fair pace - as such, the title itself is surprisingly on the nose. The relatively convoluted nature of the set up eventually straightens out, and lands on a familiar trope. The visuals are suitably stunning and are loaded with details. Holland and Pratt perform well, and are generally well cast. The humour is a little hit-or-miss, though the story is generally well written. A fun and emotionally resonating piece, though perhaps not among Pixar's finest.