Home Raya And The Last Dragon (Subtitled)

Raya And The Last Dragon (Subtitled)

Cast: Awkwafina, Gemma Chan, Kelly Marie Train, Daniel Dae Kim
Genre: Action
Author(s): Adele Lim, Qui Nguyen
Director: Don Hall, John Ripa, Paul Briggs, Carlos Lopez Estrada
Release Date: 05/03/2021
Running Time: 103mins
Country: US
Year: 2021

Five hundred years ago, the enchanted kingdom of Kumandra blossomed from the seed of a blissful union between humans and dragons. Alas, a plague borne of discord called the Druun took root and ravaged the land, reducing creatures great and small to lifeless statues. Chief Benja and his "dragon nerd" daughter Raya proudly protect a luminescent stone, which protects humanity from the Druun. One poor judgment allows the darkness to return and Raya embarks on a perilous quest to restore peace.


 

LondonNet Film Review
Raya And The Last Dragon (PG)

East meets west with clashing swords as the computer animation wizards at Disney continue to push visual boundaries on land, in the clouds and underwater in Raya And The Last Dragon. Masterminded almost entirely from home during lockdown by directors Don Hall and Carlos Lopez Estrada and co-directors Paul Briggs and John Ripa, this rip-roaring adventure shares creative DNA with the 1998 Disney animation Mulan, spliced with genes from the Indiana Jones and Star Wars universes. A trio of acrobatic, monkey-like thieves called the Ongis owe some of their rough and tumble charm to the militaristic penguins in Madagascar, softened with the hilarious addition of a light-fingered “con baby”, whose larcenous antics give an entirely new meaning to the term cradle-snatcher…

Co-writers Qui Nguyen and Adele Lim, one of the razor-sharp adapters of Crazy Rich Asians, promote female empowerment through the eyes of an emotionally damaged and flawed heroine, whose narrative arc elicits more than one trickle of tears. A virtuoso comedic turn from Awkwafina as the magical behemoth of the title draws favourable comparisons to Eddie Murphy’s Mushu. She riffs energetically with co-stars as her creature jabbers incessantly to overcome insecurities and seeks to demonstrate her feted swimming prowess: “I slaughter when I hit the water!” In every sense, she makes a big splash.

Five hundred years ago, the enchanted kingdom of Kumandra blossomed from the seed of a blissful union between humans and dragons. Alas, a plague borne of discord called the Druun took root and ravaged the land, reducing creatures great and small to lifeless statues. The dragons sacrificed themselves to save humanity, channelling their power into a single glittering gem which banished the Druun. Chief Benja (voiced by Daniel Dae Kim) and his “dragon nerd” daughter Raya (Kelly Marie Tran) proudly protect the luminescent stone from covetous eyes. They remain hopeful that deep divisions can be healed between the five feuding clans: Fang, Heart, Spine, Tail and Talon.

One poor judgment allows the Druun to return and Raya embarks on a perilous quest with her bug armadillo companion Tuk Tuk (Alan Tudyk) to restore peace by summoning the spirit of fallen dragon Sisu (Awkwafina). As she travels through the realms, Raya forges alliances with street-smart 10-year-old orphan Boun (Izaac Wang), hulking warrior Tong (Benedict Wong) and pilfering infant Noi (Thalia Tran).

Raya And The Last Dragon follows this “fellowship of Druun butt-kickery” on a rollicking odyssey that deftly plucks heartstrings. Retinas are repeatedly dazzled by lush, sweeping landscapes and highly detailed characters, whose faces ripple with fear, guilt and regret, echoed in the elegiac melodies of composer James Newton Howard’s majestic score laden with Asian instruments. A powerful underlying message about camaraderie and resilience in the face of adversity is echoed in the filmmakers’ triumph over technical and broadband limitations during the past 12 months to deliver such exquisite (martial) artistry.

– Kim Hu


London Cinemas Showing Raya And The Last Dragon (Subtitled)


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UK and Irish Cinemas Showing Raya And The Last Dragon (Subtitled)


From: Friday 23rd July
To: Thursday 5th August

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From: Friday 6th August
To: Thursday 12th August

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