A couple weeks ago, I was super excited and even shocked to see that shortly after its theatrical release, Strange World was added to Disney+ for home viewers to enjoy at no extra cost. As with all new Disney releases, I will watch the film regardless and Strange World was no exception. But in all honesty, I knew nothing about this movie in particular and it wasn’t something I was anticipating. Hearing that the film was a box office bomb didn’t help to raise my expectations either. Despite my initial suspicions, I still headed into the film with zero expectations and knowledge…but I walked out rather disappointed. For me, Disney’s newest animated flick, Strange World, was a big miss. Although the film is packed with voice talents like Jake Gyllenhaal, Gabrielle Union, Dennis Quaid, and Lucy Liu, both the characters and plot felt a little far too bland for me to be impressed.

The Clade family searching the World beneath their home

As a big Disney lover and believer, I usually like to judge their films by seeing if it has that “Disney spark”. By that I mean, is this movie able to evoke a special, emotional feeling from me? Does it capture something wondrous? Unfortunately with Strange World, I felt absolutely nothing. It was a disappointing entry from Disney as the film seems to be mediocre at best. The plot felt easily predictable and it felt like there was a struggle in reaching its end destination and moral of the story.

My main issue with Strangle World lies with the characters; I found most (if not all) of the main protagonists to be incredibly unlikable. Look, I get that the concept was about exploring difficult family dynamics, and while sure, some of the discussions hit close to home, I felt far more frustrated than sympathetic. Particularly looking at the main three protagonists, Searcher Clade (voiced by Gyllenhaal), Jaeger Clade (voiced by Quaid), and Ethan Clade (voiced by Jaboukie White), all three were far too stubborn and disagreeable to make me feel any connection towards them. You know it’s a big problem when you don’t feel like rooting for any of the characters in a Disney film.

The Clade family returning home

I was hoping the climactic resolution near the end would make up for the rest of the rather dull plot, but when each father/son combo reunited and solved their issues, I wasn’t overwhelmed with emotion or shall I put it, “didn’t feel that Disney magic”. I don’t mean to be terribly rude, but it just felt like Strange World was lacking some heart. I loved the idea of centering the film around more mature topics on family and relationships, and while the potential was definitely there, it lacked the proper execution.

What I will compliment about Strange World though is the film’s beautiful animations and design. I loved the choice of colour palette with all the pinks, purples, and oranges. The “strange world” was definitely a sight to see and while the story itself was lacking, I can definitely say that the movie was still a visual delight. All the wacky and weird looking beings living down in this world were fun to watch, making it entertaining to see what was in store.

I can’t believe I’m going to say this about a Disney film, but I would definitely consider Strange World to be a skippable entry in the Disney collection. Thinking over the entire movie, I have very little positive things I would say about the film. I know a couple people myself who watched about halfway before giving up, calling Strange World “weird and not enjoyable”. So with a heavy heart, I’m afraid I’m going to have to give Strange World a 4/10. It really missed the mark for me and I don’t see myself rewatching this movie by any means. But hey, if you happened to like it I would love to hear your thoughts and reasons why!