By: Cody Englander
Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is a sequel to the overlooked Puss In Boots standalone movie from 2011. The sequel follows Puss (Antonio Banderas) on his ninth and final life, desperate to find the titular Last Wish and regain his lives. What’s stopping him? Goldilocks and three bears, the pie tycoon Jack Horner, and the literal embodiment of Death. Puss is joined by his closest companions, Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek) and newcomer Perrito (Harvey Guillén). Will Puss save himself or will time have run out for our favorite feline?
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Puss In Boots: The Last Wish is a movie that you get what you want out of. It will rarely leave you disappointed, as there is something for everyone. Comedy for both adults and children? Check. A great swashbuckling adventure film? Check. Cute and likable side characters? Check. A wonderful song and dance sequence? Check. Over a decade later, we get a movie in the vein of the original Shrek. Not only does it do all of these things, it also improves upon the world building in a series that already has five movies with three new antagonists, each on their own journey – Death being the standout by far. Death is portrayed as a wolf that wields dueling scythes, destined for Puss in Boots to be his next victim. His scenes are bone-chilling and he makes for some of the most creative uses of animation in any movie of the past 20 years.
Brilliant, beautiful, and hilarious are all words I would never think to associate with a Puss In Boots sequel. Joel Crawford, director of only the admittedly underrated Croods sequel, proves to be one of the most trustworthy animation directors with just two films under his belt.
The energy is unmatched, and Puss is at his most relatable in this movie. He does so much to prove his vulnerability, with a surprisingly apt comparison to Clint Eastwood in Unforgiven, although Puss has a more tragic and convincing backstory and redemption.
Puss in Boots: The Last Wish may seem like a movie just for kids, it may seem formulatic, but it offers so much on the contrary that it’s hard to hate. The vibrant art style and the chaotic and inspired action scenes make for a ridiculously fun time for all ages. Animation is a medium for anyone to enjoy, just as anyone can enjoy Puss In Boots: The Last Wish. The ending leaves off on a perfect note, and if this is any indication of where the Shrek franchise is headed, the future looks bright.