MMT Minute Thoughts on LUCA and LOKI streaming now on Disney+

Hey MMT Family. I know it’s been a little over a week since the last review, but I took time off to support family and get very much needed rest for myself. I did watch a few screeners and new releases during that period, but I didn’t get to share or talk about a couple of them before their release dates.

That being said, two new releases I really enjoyed are both streaming now on Disney+ and I would recommend one for adults and the kiddies, with a strong caution of the second for younger audiences.

The first is the Pixar animated film LUCA which premiered last Friday June 18.

“Luca” tells the story of the titular character, voiced by Jacob Tremblay, a child sea monster that lives below the surface waters of a seaside town on the Italian Rivera who dreams of visiting the human world. When he disobeys his parents and goes above the surface, he takes on human form and meets another child sea monster (in human form) named Alberto (Jack Dylan Grazer) whom he instantly befriends and shares the mutual dream of owning their own Vespa moped. While visiting the nearby town, the two discover an opportunity to make their dream a reality and enjoy some of the pleasures of the human world – but their secret poses a huge threat to their aspirations and also their safety if found.

The story, although sweet and highly entertaining, isn’t as moving as some other Pixar offerings – such as “Coco” and “Up” – but it is a visually stunning coming-of-age story – filled with good messaging about finding one’s purpose, acceptance, and friendship.

“Luca” is a great pick for a family movie night, and is enjoyable for little and big kids alike. I rate it 3.5 out of 5 on the MMTrometer.

The next Disney offering is the Marvel limited series LOKI which airs its third episode this coming Wednesday, June 23. Similar to “WandaVision,” “Loki” picks up after (or technically during) the events of “Avengers: Endgame” when the “God of Mischief” interrupts the Avengers plans to acquire all of the Infinity Stones from past events – including one that took place during the capture, and subsequent escape, of Loki himself.

With his escape thwarted by the TVA, Time Variance Authority, Loki (hesitantly) agrees to utilize his mischievous and manipulative skill set to assist the organization with tracking a dangerous entity that is disrupting and creating havoc in the universal timeline.

A clever story, with a TV-14 rating, it’s a bit more mature than the hit show “WandaVision,” which had a PG rating. And although the “wonder writers” at Marvel do an amazing job showing exactly what happens in “Endgame” with the Loki sequence, so a re-watch isn’t needed, I would recommend any newbies watch the aforementioned as well as the Thor films for good measure. (Segue: I also think “Black Panther,” Avengers: Infinity War, and “Captain Marvel” are nice complements – and that’s just based off of my screenings of the first two episodes. I’m certain that the sometimes Marvel contributor to the site Darryl King would argue that, with respect to the Marvel phase I, we should see them all!)

With a stellar cast that includes the chameleon-like Tom Hiddleston (Thor, Kong: Skull Island) as Loki, Owen Wilson (Wonder, No Escape), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Motherless Brooklyn, Beyond the Lights), and Wunmi Mosaku (Ruby from the hit HBO series Lovecraft Country), “Loki” is a welcome and action-filled thrill ride in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

I really appreciate how Marvel continues to excel at incorporating action/fantasy, drama and humor into its offerings. This series is another perfect blend of that triad and a great choice for television escapism. I rate it 4 out of 5 on the MMTrometer.

Until next thought, Thomasena

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