“Big Hero 6” is released as a single-disc DVD and a two-disc Blu-ray set today from Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.
In the town of San Fransokyo, Hiro (Ryan Potter) is a genius robotics wiz who graduated high school in his early teens. He spends most of nights in back alleys making money at bot fighting, but his older brother Tadashi (Daniel Henney) introduces him to the nerd lab at the local university. It’s there that Hiro meets Tadashi’s classmates Go Go (Jamie Chung), Wasabi (Damon Wayans Jr), Honey Lemon (Genesis Rodriguez), and Fred (T.J. Miller). Hiro is then introduced to Professor Robert Callaghan (James Cromwell), the head of the robotics program, and immediately wants to drop everything and attend this incredible school.
As a way of impressing Callaghan in order to attend the university, Hiro creates a type of nanorobotics he calls microbots that react to its users brainwaves. Microbots can build and create anything with a simple thought. Just when everything seems to be going Hiro’s way a fire breaks out and takes Tadashi’s life before it’s put out. Riddled with depression, Hiro is lead on an adventure along with his brother’s final creation as his sidekick; a fluffy robotic nurse called Baymax (Scott Adsit).
The animated short “Feast” that plays before “Big Hero 6” is like an extra helping of dessert before the main course arrives. Directed by Patrick Osborne (animation supervisor on “Paperman” and animator on other Disney films like “Wreck-It Ralph” and “Bolt”), “Feast” is the story of a young Boston Terrier puppy who is discovered on the street by a man. The man feeds the canine dog food, which snowballs into the man just giving this dog the most unhealthy food imaginable like bacon and eggs, spaghetti, and pizza to this dog; usually piled on top of its kibble. Over the years, the dog develops a taste for its master’s bad eating habits but the man eventually meets a woman and falls in love.
As their relationship blossoms, the dog’s special treats become nonexistent. The dog gets upset and turns its nose up at normal food. The man and woman eventually go their separate ways, which triggers a new era of incredibly unhealthy junk food once again. But the dog realizes how unhappy its master is so it takes matters into its own hands to fix things. “Feast” is adorable and amusing and is one of those genius animated shorts that uses nearly no dialogue.
The hereditary brilliance both Hiro and Tadashi share is almost unbelievable. Why would anyone need to go to college if they were already that intelligent? Their peers are quite the characters, especially Fred who seems to run on nothing but whimsical dreams of becoming a comic book monster. Maybe it’s a way to hone a skill they already possess or because it’s just something that seems fun and Hiro has all that cash from bot fighting he needs to blow through anyway.
The animated sci-fi adventure has the typical superhero film formula: you’re introduced to their family and supporting characters, something tragic happens to somebody close to the protagonist, the hero falls into a funk and relies on his friends to snap him out of it, they discover a masked super villain using the hero’s technology, and they must form a superhero team to save the day. “Big Hero 6” embraces those superhero roots and just rolls with it in the best of ways. The film is extremely funny when it needs to be (the fist bump will never be the same), heartbreaking when it’s crucial to the storyline, and exciting throughout.
Baymax is the heart and soul of the film. The method in which Hiro is able to teach the robot certain things without it ever questioning its main objective is reminiscent of John Connor teaching The Terminator 90s slang in “Terminator 2.” Baymax’s drunken-like antics when its battery gets low is sure to get a lot of laughs. The perspectives used while Hiro is riding Baymax as they rocket through the sky is very similar to what was used in “How to Train Your Dragon 2” as Hiccup rode Toothless into battle. These really dynamic camera angles are able to put the audience directly into the action to make them feel like they’re riding on the back of a superhero.
“Big Hero 6” seems to combine a ton of elements from some of the greatest sci-fi, action, and superhero films out there into one incredibly fun film suitable for the entire family. Besides “The Terminator,” “Iron Man” and “The Avengers” come to mind and the villain has this Doctor Octopus aura about him. “Big Hero 6” is sensational and imaginative animation that will cater to any age.