It was released in theaters on March 4, 2016. That was yesterday. We don’t usually catch movies on opening night so it was only chance that we did this one and what a treat it was!
Zootopia starts off as a story of a small-town bunny, Judy Hopps, dreaming to succeed and make a difference in the big, bad town. It was a fun ride and I was convinced that we’ll be handed a sweet message of how we should never take anyone for granted when the cute little bunny hops over all hurdles and triumphs and then everyone will know that ‘you can be anything you want’. But it was more than just that. It was that particular moment – that one press conference scene – when I, as a member of the Muslim American community, sitting in a theater in a Tennessee suburb few days after Super Tuesday, couldn’t believe that I was watching something so apt and relevant to the current environment of fear and politics of hate in the country.
It was in that moment that I realized that Zootopia was about me.
Disney was talking about me and the prejudices I faced and my fears and the way I felt! And I’m sure that every member of any minority under fire at the hands of presidential candidates like Donald Trump and the mindset he appeases felt exactly the way I did, sitting there and watching Disney beautifully tell it how it is.
The theater was dead silent and I couldn’t help wonder if everyone else there, those who weren’t like me, the majority that the movie talked about, got that message too. Did they see what the targeted minorities were feeling at this point in time in the country? The politics of fear and hate and bigotry – did they understand how wrong it all was that was happening around us?
I’d love to believe that Zootopia is anti-Trump, only movies aren’t made in a day and the first trailer of the flick surfaced while we were still laughing at the mere idea of a Trump Presidency; something that currently doesn’t seem so far from becoming a possibility. So, no, Zootopia is not anti-Trump. It is, however, anti-hate, anti-fear, anti-bigotry, anti-bullying, anti-persecution, anti-tyranny, anti-war; it is anti everything that’s subhuman and uncivil.
Zootopia is pro-dialogue, pro-awareness, pro-education, pro-diversity, pro-tolerance, pro-freedom, pro-unity, pro-humanity, pro-peace, and pro anything that makes our world a better place to live in.
The movie has a PG rating. But if your child is old enough to sit by you and watch the news, take her/him to watch this movie. It will make a good difference in their life. I’ll be hailing this movie left, right and center.
Disney has, once again, won our hearts!