By Ben Nietzel
Kubo and the Two Strings follows the epic adventure of young Kubo, a poor boy who uses his storytelling acumen to scrape out a meager existence for him and his mother in Japan. When he accidently summons his evil aunts who are bent on settling an old score, Kubo must set out on a journey to learn about himself, reunite his family, and fulfill his destiny.
Pro – Great Story
Kubo and the Two Strings (hereafter Kubo) tells a fantastic story that will engage both children and adults. One of the wonders of the film is its ability to deal with some heavy topics: family betrayal, parental loss, growing into responsibility, and swords, while still being good, wholesome family fare. These topics are handled well, and the humor, inspiration, and message of the film help to lift up a story that could have easily gone too dark. There are some minor holes in the story, but overall it’s really just an enjoyable adventure with a positive message. Kubo himself is a great character. His family lineage gives him the power to generate magic from his two-stringed guitar, and this is most apparent in his ability to use the guitar to bring his origami (Japanese paper folding) creations to life. This type of power is really creative, and it infuses the best scenes with a fun and visually interesting dynamic. Kubo also provides a great role model for children with his positive attitude, respectful demeanor to adults, and his willingness to help his family and those around him.