Luca Movie Review & Summary: A Pleasant Little Tale Of Friendship

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Video Source – Pixar (Pixar YouTube Channel)

Luca is a coming of age Pixar Animated Movie. It revolves around a boy trying to explore the world with his friend Alberto by his side. 

Luca Movie Plot

Luca revolves around a sea creature who yearns to explore the world of land after having spent the better part of his childhood in sea. However the creatures on land aren’t particularly fond of these “Sea Monsters”. So when he wanders into this world, he is in for a world of adventure. 

Luca Movie Cast 

  • Jacob Tremblay as Luca
  • Jack Dylan Grazer as Alberto 
  • Emma Berman as Giulia

Luca Movie Review

Luca is all kinds of fun, indeed. While I have been wanting them to really dig into the lore aspects of animation and churn something super original like Coco, Luca is still a worthy contender which tickles your emotions and makes you smile.

As I have said before, Animated movies have sort of fallen into the formulaic aspect of it all, and yes, Luca feels formulaic and the same old story progression or Disney and Pixar movies have been relying upon for all these years, but again, it works and majorly appeals to the audience that it targets (including me), so who am I to say anything.
Luca is a world inhabited by Sea Monsters and Humans, so the dynamic of fear is mutual and each one of them is afraid that the other one’s going to hunt them.

Luca (Voiced by Jacob Tremblay) has spent his early childhood beneath the seas and like any other person who has never explored the world, he is curious, enthusiastic and yearning to go into the light of the sun and ride on a Vespa. This yearning for Vespa actually comes from one of the sea scavenger he meets while chasing a gramophone.

Alberto (Voiced by Jack Dylan Grazer) is an experienced land animal, by that I mean, he has no problem going in and out of water anytime he feels like, and he even has a house on a broken tower on the land. So this friendship nurtures as they wander on land in search of adventures and, more importantly, a shining Vespa. A Vespa which could transport them to any part of this world and let them explore each and every nook and corner, without anyone keeping them in a cage.

In a still from Luca Movie

Luca Movie: Simple Yet Effective 

Luca has very booklike animation if that makes any sense, its somewhat detailed but in order to bring the magical beauty out of the seaside of Italian Riviera, it presents the waters and the sun in their most basic and pure forms. The scope for world-building isn’t the priority in this setting and it doesn’t need to go to extreme details in its animation like Coco needed.

With its simplistic story, it prioritizes a friendship and their relationship and the tropical waters of Italy look unbelievably pleasant. They basically transported me into a little vacation of my own, behind my Laptop. I know, that’s just sad. But yeah, the animation is subtle and without trying too many new things, concepts and themes, it elevates the beauty of the world. 

The friendship between Luca and Alberto is the main focus of the plot and it’s pretty amazing how both the voice actors do a tremendous job in bringing out the emotions. For Luca, he has always been scared. The whole plot has milestones which he needs to achieve, like getting out of the water, making friends, going into the feared “People Town”.

Alberto on the other hand, is a complete contrast of Luca. He never second guesses anything that he does, no matter how ridiculously wild or dangerous it is. He lets the nature judge the consequences for him. And this heartwarming blend of Caring too much and Not Caring at all, gives birth to this amazing friendship.

Both of them have their own sorrows and as we move ahead we discover certain depths of these protagonists, and they ultimately revolt that flame of an undying friendship. And yes, it makes one emotional to the core, because every good Animated movie has to make you cry now. It has become a rule for the studios, but one thing I can be sure about is that those tears are more often than not, always of Joy. 

The world, despite all of it’s beauty does fall a bit shallow perhaps. The characters are nice and the main antagonist, is nothing but a goofy bully who thinks everyone loves him. But leaving that aside, it becomes really Linear and straightforward, especially when the same concept and progression has been repeatedly used in so many movies now. After all these years and all this time of watching these movies, linear progressions are hardly surprising anymore. They don’t make you go, ‘Ha!’ in excitement and giddy optimism and that is also a testament of somewhat weak worldbuilding that movies like Pixar’s Luca, fall prey to.

The climax was a tear jerker but it also felt like the circumstances were forcing it to be one. There were some farewells which felt like they were there just to get the audience a bit more teary eyed. Luca could have had an ending where there aren’t any particular farewells and frankly, I would have been alright with that, but forcing a weird scenario just to separate people isn’t the best way to go about it in my opinion.

Maybe the writers could have crafted a better reason or maybe they should have just left. But coming back to what I said, it isn’t a good animated movie if it doesn’t make you cry. 

Luca is gorgeous and the relationship of Luca and Alberto triumphs in this ride. It does nothing new, but for both, the audience which is accustomed to Pixar Movies and the audience whose first animated movie is going to be Luca, there is a lot to like in it for everyone. It’s more than worth it to experience it for the light hearted, sweet natured flick it is, and even when my heart craves for something deeper, I had an absolute blast watching Luca. 

Luca Movie Critical Reception 

Luca stands at 89% on Rotten Tomatoes with the Consensus being, “Slight but suffused with infectious joy, the beguiling Luca proves Pixar can play it safe while still charming audiences of all ages.” It has a Metascore of 71.

The Movie Culture Synopsis

Luca is Pixar going light and hearty at the same time. It is sure to bring a smile on your face and you witness this heartwarming friendship unfold. It isn’t anything out of the ordinary though, for the better or the worse.

Author

  • Hardik is a Mumbai based writer who is a cinephile. Nothing interests him more than movies and visual entertainment. His other hobbies include reading and singing (At least, he likes to think that he sings well). You can connect with him on his Instagram.