Film Review: Sing

Musical comedy Sing takes on that well-known product of the TV talent show to create a suitably entertaining animated feature. Although the film is perfectly watchable, it is not particularly memorable.

Buster Moon is a theatre impresario struggling to stay afloat. He decides to stage a singing contest, hoping that the popularity will be sufficient to restore the theatre. But there is just the small matter of the prize fund…

Directed by Christophe Lourdelet and Garth Jennings (from Jennings’ script), Sing offers viewers a world populated by anthropomorphic animals and the recognisable device of a talent show. This functions to introduce a host of diverse characters who compete in the show.

Protagonist Buster Moon is fleshed out sufficiently. The central premise of saving the theatre offers the character the opportunity to show drive, and some questionable tactics. The deception is forgivable, as most viewers can get behind Buster’s cause. However, the other characters have less depth. The film gives some backstory to the main competitors, however these are fairly formulaic. Johnny’s struggle between pursuing his dream and doing what his father wants is played out in a very predictable fashion.

There are some funny moments in the film, which often derive from the smaller supporting characters. Sing moves at a suitable pace, and feels the right duration for the type of film it is. Conclusions are reached for all of the film’s narrative strands, and these are predictable in their outcomes. Music in the film is used to good effect, with a soundtrack filled with popular songs. Matthew McConaughey is well cast as the voice of Buster, and Scarlett Johansson shows off her singing chops as Ash.

The main problem with Sing is that it fails to do anything to distinguish itself from other features of its ilk. Compared to recent animated features like Zootropolis and Kubo and the Two Strings, this film is easily forgettable.