The film introduces us to Smurf Village and its inhabitants. There’s Brainy, Clumsy, Hefty, Jokey, Vanity, Baker and all the other boy Smurfs. We end on Smurfette, who is trying to figure out her purpose in the village. In case you didn’t know, every Smurf has their character trait, which they are aptly named after to make things easier. But Smurfette is just “the girl”. Other than that she doesn’t seem to have a trait. Trying to figure that out lands her and some of her friends in Gargamel’s lair. There they come across a map to a lost village of Smurfs in the Forbidden Forrest. A race against Gargamel ensues as Smurfette and friends brave unknown lands and dangers to warn their fellow Smurfs.
Even if you already know all the Smurfs, it is a fun rollcall being (re-)introduced to the little blue forest dwellers at the start of the film. All the male Smurfs are easily distinguished by their trait, but Smurfette only by having long hair, wearing a dress and high heels (heels in a forest!). It’s a very antiquated way to look at gender roles and it is refreshing to see that that gets addressed throughout the film. You could go as far and say the film was made to address this. While Smurfette has always been able to hold her own with the other Smurfs, I would have never even dared to dream of a girl power Smurf film. But that is precisely what 'Smurfs: The Lost Village' is.
Brainy is smart, Clumsy is, well clumsy, Hefty is strong, Jokey is funny (at least to himself), but what is Smurfette? She is the only “not real” Smurf, as she was made by Gargamel out of a lump of clay. Struggling with her identity she goes on a journey of self-discovery not unlike several other animated female heroes we have seen in the recent past (this is a great trend, keep it up). Aided by some of her friends, she encounters beautiful wonders and horrible dangers on her quest to save others and learn who she truly is.
The voice acting is great. I especially loved McBrayer as Clumsy, Wilson as Gargamel and Welker as Azrael. Every scene with Gargamel and Azrael was hilarious. It reminded me of the cartoon series I grew up with, perfectly capturing these two characters and their bickering. They were my favourites back then and immediately turned into my favourites in 'Smurfs: The Lost Village'. How could you not like a character who just wants to be the most powerful wizard ever, with a cool robe and get his full head of hair back?
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