The Little Prince
The Little Prince (2015) is an English-language French-Italian animated fantasy adventure film based on the 1943 novella of the same name by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Even though the film is categorised as an animated movie and maybe considered essentially for kids but the life lessons and metaphors discussed across the movie would be more relatable and suitable for adults, trying to figure out their way out of adulthood because let’s face it, adulthood is not a glorious as it seemed to be as a child.
The original story from the novella revolves around a young prince who visits various planets in space, including Earth, and addresses themes of loneliness, friendship, love and loss. The film, however, provides a fresh and unique way to modernise this narrative and intertwine it with the life of an unnamed little girl who is trying to seek admission in a prestigious and elite private school with the help of her single workaholic mother, who is equally ambitious about enrolling her daughter into this school called Werth Academy. The Little Girl has her whole life charted out by her mother, who means well but fails to recognise and acknowledge that her daughter’s childhood is more precious than a school admission. Things take a turn when the Little Girl, who is also oblivious to what it means to be kid, moves to a new & extremely dull neighborhood and is trying really hard to keep up with the schedule chalked out by her mother, until one day when she accidently meets her next-door neighbor- The Aviator, a kind, eccentric, adventurous and wise old man. Though initially like her mother, the Little Girl is reluctant to give in to the joy of little things in life and enjoy being a kid but eventually she develops a beautiful bond with The Aviator who becomes her solace from her mundane life. The Aviator tells the Little Girl about his encounter and interaction with ‘The Little Prince’ and how his inquisitiveness led him to understand the philosophies of life and human nature. The Little Girl, intrigued by the ‘Little Prince’ and his story, decides to keep visiting her old neighbour who teaches her to be a kid by taking her on little adventures every day, making her understand what it really means to have a childhood. The Little Girl eventually decides to go on a journey to find the existence and eventual fate of the Little Prince, which gives her a sneak peak into what the future holds for her, and it is far from what she expected. The film is the journey of the Little Girl trying to understand the meaning of childhood and all the learnings that come with it through the Little Prince’s story.
Cast & Crew
The film is directed by Mark Osborne (known for directing Kung Fu Panda) , who has done a great job at depicting this piece of literature in a profound, sensitive and relatable manner by using multiple forms of animation to make such a beautiful movie that stands out from other animated movies.
The voice cast is an ensemble of some of the best actors in the industry like Jeff Bridges, Mackenzie Foy, Rachel McAdams, Paul Rudd, James Franco, Marion Cotillard, Ricky Gervais, Benicio del Toro, Albert Brooks and Paul Giamatti. All of them bring a part of their personality into the role they’re portraying.
The film’s score is composed by Hans Zimmer and Richard Harvey, who have done a great job at encapsulating the Little Prince and Little Girl’s journey through some beautiful musical themes that makes you a part of their fantasy filled adventure across time and space.
“…I guess this world just got too grown-up.” An animated movie that starts with a dialogue as deep and heavy as this one is bound to get your attention right from the first frame. The Little Prince is a movie within a movie that takes you on a journey and makes you question what it really means to be a child and have we truly forgotten the child within us? Even though the movie is an adaptation of an already existing story, what sets it apart is its ability to make us a part of the story. I felt that the Little Girl represents us and our practical mind that only questions the rationality of things, unlike a kid that is curious and inquisitive about everything. This movie also works as a great adaptation because it blends the traditional bits of the story from 1943 and gives it a completely modern perspective with the help of the Little Girl’s storyline to make it more relatable. The narrative keeps shuffling between the Little Prince and the Little Girl’s story, and this shift is beautifully portrayed through two completely forms of animation- Stop motion and 3D, both so different from each other yet so fascinating to watch on screen. The makers of this film have taken complete liberty to animate two completely contrasting worlds that are from reality and take your imagination on a joy ride. The monochromatic nature of the Little Girl’s life is so well depicted through her clothes, her house and the city she lives in. This seemed like a beautiful parallel to the Little Prince and the Aviator’s colourful and vibrant life that draws the Little Girl into their worlds. The film is filled with such beautiful quotes and analogies that I discover something new with every watch. Even though the visuals might be extremely delightful for a child watching this, I personally feel that this movie was made for adults because it explains some extremely important facets of life like love, friendship and loneliness so aesthetically and with such simplicity. This film is a compilation of so many life lessons that it’s hard to pick one moment or theme but for me the most important one is when the Aviator tells the Little Girl that, “Growing up is not the problem. Forgetting is.”
Disclaimer: The above review solely illustrates the views of the writer.