Happy Feet (2006) May Cause Toe-Tapping

This entry was posted in Comedy, Dance, Family, Music, Romance by Cleave on

As the tag in the title says, this film will get your toes and fingers tapping as you are watching the film. While Musings has reviewed this film before it deserves a revisit not only because it is a different reviewer but it just really is that good of a film. We get to see the journey of discovery by a loveable little fuzz ball of a penguin named Mumbles and how it is that he is able to save his entire race from starvation and death. It is a film that will move your heart and might even bring a tear to your eye but in the end you are going to be feeling good about yourself and those around you. It really that powerful a movie that will stick with you for a very VERY long time.

Mumble, interesting how the penguin got its name, but more interestingly is why he got the name. Memphis (Hugh Jackman) and Norma Jean (Nicole Kidman) are a mated pair that had their heart songs intertwined into one. That is the way the penguins choose their mates, at least in the movie, they sing to one another and the one that echoes and builds on that song is the one that you will spend the rest of your life with. It is touching how you get to see the two meet and their individual songs start to combine and echo each other till they are but one song. It is from this union of the heart that leads to an egg. Once the egg is safely with Memphis, Norma Jean and the other female penguins go off to the fishing grounds for the winter.

The winter was an especially harsh one as there just was not enough fish before to fatten the Emperor Penguins up. When times are tough people and even penguins in this film start to say strange things. They say that the gods are punishing them for backsliders and other such nonsense but we know that other things are usually to blame. In this case it was not the Great Wind, the penguin god, but it was over fishing of the Antarctica ice shelf that is to blame. So yea this film is an environmental film but that really doesn’t matter because it just really is that good of a film. It was during this winter that Memphis dropped the egg that he was protecting and it had time to grow cold. When eggs get cold they usually never hatch and he knew that so began to fervently call out to the Great Wind to save his and Norma Jean’s egg.

When the winter had passed and the eggs were hatching Memphis is standing there looking down at his egg wondering if it would hatch or not. He didn’t want his Norma Jean to know that he dropped the egg when it mattered the most. He didn’t want anyone to know at all that he was to blame for the egg not hatching. Then another penguin came over and started pecking at it and saying hello to it. Right when they were about to give up all hope there was a peck from inside the shell as it started to rock back and forth. You could hear something being said inside but it was muffled so the little chick that was pecking on the egg called it Mumbles, and it stuck.

Mumbles (Elijah Wood) was an odd hatchling in that he didn’t sing, instead he felt his heart song through his feet. When others were happy and singing to the sky he would be tap dancing with his happy little feet, hence the name for the film. From there we see the whole gambit of humanity, hate, greed, evangelism, fear and superstition and disbelief in something that is right under their nose. It is amazing how this one film could echo, even today, what is going on around us in the world. We see how he is cast out and must find his own way and the truth before he is ever able to get back to his Gloria (Brittany Murphy), the penguin that he loves, and his family.

Kids will love this film and will literally watch it back to back again and again for hours. They seem to never grow tired of it and will giggle and dance along with it. Older folk will love it as well as they will see the world in the film around them as well as fall in love with the little fuzz balls and the story that goes with it. This is a film that will move the hear and touch the soul and you really can not stop your toes from tapping. They will start doing it even before you realize that you are tapping right along with the songs.

I give this film a Musing review of ★★★★★★