“Puss In Boots: The Last Wish” Review


Photo Credit: universalpictures.com

Aaron Frier, Contributor

On Dec. 21st, 2022, Dreamworks released the newest addition to their pantheon of movies with Puss in Boots: The Last Wish. It has been 11 years since the last feature film in the Shrek franchise, with that being the original Puss in Boots spin-off. As a prequel to the Shrek movies, the original Puss in Boots followed the popular feline on an adventure of his own. The film had a middling reception, with not many people feeling strongly one way or the other. As such, the sequel’s announcement seemed to come out of nowhere.

When the trailers began to drop, the movie looked promising. The animation took on a storybook-like style of animation with a story about Puss in Boots having used up eight of his nine lives. Now the burning question is if these trailers accurately portrayed the movie. In other words, was it any good? I am happy to say that the film exceeded expectations. Everything about Puss in Boots: The Last Wish comes together to produce a brilliant package that sticks out as one of the greatest animated movies in not just Dreamworks’ catalog, but for the entire medium.

For one, its animation style is beautiful. From the very beginning of the movie, it is clear the amount of love put in. Each shot looks like a watercolor storybook. The character animation is beautiful throughout, and it perfectly fits the world that the Shrek series takes place in. The movie’s storybook style comes to life on screen, and enhances the experience. Each action sequence is undeniably exhilarating with the way that the characters move. The Last Wish was a perfect showcase of a potential future for Dreamworks animation.

As good as the animation is, the movie would be nothing without the legendary storytelling and endearing characters. The movie starts out with Puss in Boots’ untimely death, leading him to the realization that he only has one life left instead of a feline’s typical nine. A series of events propels the titular feline to hunt the Last Wish in order to get his nine lives back, before his final life runs out. Along the way, Puss in Boots crosses paths with a diverse cast of characters. These characters are all brought to life amazingly by their voice actors. Antonio Banderas’ return as Puss in Boots and is as lively and iconic as ever. Kitty Softpaws (voiced by Salma Hayek) returns to further develop their relationship. New characters include Goldilocks (Florence Pugh), Big Jack Horner (John Mulaney), and a new dog character (Harvey Guillen). There is also a wolf character (Wagner Moura) who steals about every scene they appear in. Each character brings a new layer to the story and comedy with each one having their own motivation to secure the Last Wish. All of these characters and themes tie in for an amazing story that explores the themes of death, mortality, trust, found family and anxiety.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is an amazing movie through and through. Between the animation and the characters, there is nothing about this movie to dislike. In fact, I was smiling throughout the entire film. It is a movie that truly shines on the big screen and should be seen as such. For a sequel to what some may consider a forgettable spin off, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish reaffirmed that the legend will never die.