Though I actually saw “Leap” yesterday, I’m writing a review of it for Day 121 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project. It’s received some rotten tomatoes from critics, but I believe I offer a fresh perspective, so please bare with me a) in case you’re wondering why I’m reviewing a children’s movie, and b) in case you’ve heard bad things/haven’t heard of it at all. Regarding the former, there are some lessons in this kids’ computer animated movie about holding on to our dreams that we adults can all use in real time. The latter was the case with me until my dear friend, Kibby, mentioned it. With my love of children’s movies, I was surprised I hadn’t seen one advertisement for it.
Most people know I love dance and am all about following your dreams, so the fact that the plot revolves around a tween orphan, Felicie, who wants to be a dancer more than anything in the world, and her best friend, Victor, who longs to be a famous inventor, and I was all in. The setting is Brittany, France, that is until the ambitious duo run away from the orphanage to Paris in hot pursuit of their dreams. Of course, their adventure is fraught with conflict and challenges, such as archenemies, wicked witch-like adult saboteurs, bad guys turned good, and even a prepubecent love interest. As if just being orphan children on the run in a huge city with nothing but the rags on their backs isn’t enough! The tactics these two employ to make their elusive dreams come true are unconventional to say the least… Some secondary characters offer both children opportunities and play a large part in making their individual pursuits possible. Some have compared the plot to “Flashdance” but have been very unkind about its weaknesses. I won’t give the ending away, but will ask that you give the movie chance. You will laugh, maybe tear up a little, and be uplifted.
This inspiring story is naive in a lighthearted, refreshing way. And by naive, I mean innocent in a truly family friendly way. From what I can tell, the critics are compairing this children’s movie to the other big name producers who pack so much adult innuendo into the movies to sell to the parents that I’ve often been embarrassed while watching with my kiddos. You know it’s bad when you’re eleven-year-old blushes and says, “Well, that was inappropriate.” Other than a little potty humor, there is none of that in this film. Instead, this little girl, on the verge of becoming a young woman, has always carried a candle for dancing in her heart, from the cradle. Literally, since a music box with a ballerina was the only thing her birth mother left there with her at the orgphanage. A postcard from a ballet academy in Paris fans the flame, and Felicie does light up the stage, something most little girls (and big ones) only dream of doing.
As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick whose dream of my daughter loving dance didn’t come true due to divorce (it wasn’t encouraged), I’ll still support her in whatever her dreams are. She is a talented artist and has a gorgeous voice. At one point, she wanted to be the next American Idol. Sound lofty? Dreams are. But like the movie demonstrated, you’ll never know how high you can get if you don’t leap.
And you’ll never know if “Leap” deserves rotten tomatoes or is being reviewed by those sucking on lemons. Hope you’ll find out for yourself. Happy Labor Day!