Project #265: My Little Pony the Movie

*Nitsuj walks through the house while humming the opening to ACCA 13 when all of a sudden someone throws a DVD through his window. He goes to see the DVD and gets a shocked look in his eyes when he sees the movie is the MLP Movie*

(Nitsuj): Oh come on! This isn’t even an Equestia Girls movie.

*A rock tied with a piece of paper comes crashing through the window. Nitsuj reads the message which says it’s either the movie or The Nutsack*

(Nitsuj): Movie it is. Fuck my life. It’s time to take another look at My Little Pony. Once again I have to stretch the fact that I don’t hate this show nor do I dislike it. It’s good, the characters and stories are well written for the most part, and the lessons and different levels of friendship are good as well. I can understand why kids and adults like the show so much but let’s be honest, it’s so easy to get jokes out of this show. I’m sorry but this show just makes it easy for me, it begs me to make fun of it and again just because I make fun of something doesn’t mean I hate it and the movie is no exception. Serving as a theatrical release for the series since Equestia Girls, MLP the Movie came out in the fall of 2017 with the help of Hasbro and Lionsgate studios backing it up. I will give this movie credit for having the original writers for the show write the story for this movie. Usually on theatrical they bring someone who has no idea what they’re doing so well done on that end Hasbro. Well let’s get this friendship parade start it. This MLP the Movie.

So the movie begins where the first thing you’ll notice is that the animation got a huge upgrade from the show (such is the case when you’ve got money from a movie company’s wallet. Makes you feel like a kid in the candy shop with the golden ticket). We see that all ponies are gathering in Canterlot ( for the friendship festival hosted by Twilight who is panicking because she’s about to ask the other princesses for a huge favor and she’s afraid they’ll say no (why!? You’ve saved Equestia so many times I’ve lost count. Whatever you want, they should be breaking their backs to make it happen). She wants them to use their magic to make a performance for their popstar Songbird Serenade better but they say no saying that her magic is all she needs to make the festival great (ungrateful bums). We then see the others helping prepare for the festival where Twilight is still worried but the others calm her down with a song. After the song Songbird arrives when all of a sudden the sky goes dark and an airship appears (Bowser has invaded Equestia! If this is a tie in with the Mario Bros. than this might just be the best crossover ever) where it lands and we see that ship is under the control of a unicorn named Tempest Shadow who has a damaged horn and serves a creature known as the Storm King (all these creative names and you give the villain the least creative name). Tempest captures Cadence, Luna, and Celestia and encases them in carbonite (I’m sure it’s something else but let’s be honest, it’s carbonite). With the help of Rainbow Dash, Twilight escapes with the rest of the mane 6 (and Spike) by jumping off a waterfall and swimming away where their next move is to find the queen of the Hippos and ask her for help (seriously? Hippos? Even Rainbow Dash can’t believe what she just heard. When one of your MCs addresses how ridiculous the quest is, you know you messed up).

Back in Canterlot all the ponies are being chained up and locked up (this is the worst party I’ve been to since the president’s inauguration) where we see that Storm King isn’t exactly what we would call a storm king. He has a staff which will allow him to control the forces of nature but he needs the magic of all the princesses in order for it to work (remember this as I might come back to this later on in the review) and Tempest’s reward for helping him out is the revival of her horn. After finding out that Twilight escaped she sets out to find her and bring her back in 3 days before the Storm King’s arrival. Speaking of Twilight, she and the others are traveling south through the badlands where they arrive at a town filled with reptiles who take bargaining and trading to the extreme. The group gets saved by a humanoid cat named Capper a cunning yet good-hearted con artist who offers to help the group out (yeah, he’s not suspicious at all. Leave before I have Seras take 2 of your lives. (Seras): I’ll take 3 just for the fun of it). But he uses a song (right the fuck out of nowhere) to convince them to trust him but of course he’s up to something. While in his house Twilight discovers that what they need to look for isn’t the queen of hippos (oh thank God. I was about to question the sanity of the writers for the show) but instead the queen of the hippogriffs aka hippogryphs, legendary creatures that are half horse half eagle (not to be confused with griffons). They live on a mountain not too far from their location but according to Capper they’ll need an airship to reach the top and he knows a guy who can help them. Just as they’re about to leave it gets revealed that he was going to sell them to the circus (wow. Seras, take all of his lives. Make sure each one is as painful as the last) and Tempest shows up (man, she caught up fast. (Isis): She does have an airship. (Nitsuj): True). They manage to escape and stowaway on an airship with Capper getting caught by Tempest and in a noble act gives Tempest false information on where the others are heading (okay, leave one life Seras. (Seras): First you want me to take 2 lives, then 9 lives, now only 8. And I thought only women could tease) and while Tempest believes him (somewhat) she brings him along for the ride to make sure he’s telling the truth (and if not, well Seras. (Seras): The scythe. Followed by crossbow fire and snapping your neck in 3 different places).

The group gets discovered by the airship crew who are parrots and servants of the Storm King. Their captain, a female parrot named Celaeno orders the group to be thrown overboard (you know 3 of them can fly right?) but before that, lunch. Yep, they literally stop what they’re about to do and have lunch with the group where we find out they used to be pirates before being forced to serve the Storm King where they act as his delivery birds. Rainbow Dash convinces them through song to return to their pirate roots (what is up with the songs coming out of nowhere in this movie? Set up people, use it. (Shizuku): I’m just sweet transvestite~! From, transsexual Transylvania~ uh-huh! (Nitsuj): What the hell are you doing woman? (Shizuku): Wasn’t that a set up for a song? (Nitsuj): No~) and to the movie’s credit it’s actually a pretty good song. The parrots return to their roots and agree to help the group reach the mountain but Rainbow Dash’s sonic rain-boom attracts the attention of Tempest in her airship and she follows after them. She boards the ship and threatens to take it down so the group has no choice but to bail in order to save Calaeno and the others. The group freefalls from the ship and Twilight saves them by creating a hot air balloon using a flag, a crate, and Spike’s fire breath (not Mcgayver level but still, impressive). They arrive at the mountain and enter the village of the hippogriffs but the place is deserted and seems to have been deserted for years. They hear someone singing and investigate the sound where they get flushed underwater (ponies go down the hole) where they get saved by Skystar a seapony (now I know you’re making this shit up) who takes them to their mother Novo where Skystar (who is like the lesser version of Pinkie. Which doesn’t take away the craziness) reveals that they’re the hippogriffs. Long ago the Storm King came to steal their magic just like the princesses. In order to protect her kind, Novo turned her people into seaponies using a magical pearl and hid them away in the ocean to escape the Storm King’s wrath. While Novo feels sorry for their home she won’t risk endangering her people or their magic and refuses to help them. Skystar tries to cheer them up and invites them to stay but they say they have to get back to their homes and families which upsets Skystar as she really doesn’t have that many friends and would have loved to spend more time with the group. This gives Twilight the idea to stick around and tells the others to keep Skystar and the others busy. This leads us to a song (finally, good set up) which may be my favorite song in the movie. Just when it seems like the group was able to reach Novo and she’s about to help them, Twilight gets caught trying to steal their pearl (princess of friendship my ass) and they get booted out.

This leads to a fight between Twilight and the others where she goes off on Pinkie saying she be better off if she didn’t have a friend like her (damn. That was cold. After everything they’ve been through, Twilight treats Pinkie like that? I don’t know where this movie fits in the timeline but it’s at least after season 4. Did she learn nothing in those seasons?). This terrible outburst causes everyone to abandon Twilight except for Spike (because he is loyal and Twilight means the most to him. He may love Rarity but Twilight is an existence he can’t live without) and tries to cheer her up where she knows she messed up but her river of tears will have to wait as she gets captured by Tempest (you know we haven’t had our villain song yet, let’s get that in. By adding it right the hell out of nowhere. My God, I thought you guys figured this out with the last song. . .that was like 3 minutes ago, what the hell movie? Can we have time to process the other song?). Sure enough she begins to sing where we see how she lost her horn. When she was just a little pony she and her friends were playing in the forest when she got attacked by a bear ( The bear destroyed her horn and thus her powers became unstable and dangerous (tends to happen when one loses a horn. Actually, I’m surprised she didn’t die. Doesn’t a unicorn die if it loses its horn?). It didn’t take long for the other ponies to abandon her because she was so dangerous and she left her village forgetting what friendship was and serving the Storm King (actually, how did you come into the service of the Storm King? You know what nevermind, I don’t need another song). Back with the others as they mope around on the foggy beach (are we in the Equestia version of London?), Spike tells them that Twilight has been captured and they rally themselves to save her but come up short until Capper, Skystar, Calaeno with her crew show up and offer to help ( Tempest arrives back in Canterlot with the captured Twilight where the Storm King is there and steals the princesses’ magic gaining their powers and everything (okay, looks like they’re not going to touch on this which means I can be merciless. The staff, why does it require the powers of the four princesses? That staff looks like it’s been around for eons and if that’s the case than that would mean that the only known princesses that existed were Celestia and Luna. Therefore, the staff should work fine with just their powers. How did the people who crafted the staff know that there would be more princesses to come, could they see the future? I’m probably looking into this way too much but Tempest said the staff won’t work without the power of the 4 princesses which means that the people who built the staff had to have known about Cadence and Twilight becoming princesses in the future). As the Storm King begins testing out his new powers making it night and day (I would do the same thing I won’t lie), the others sneak into Canterlot and fight the baddies until the mane 5 and Spike use Pinkie’s cannon to save Twilight and Tempest from the Storm King (he lied to Tempest. Big shock, I know. I mean, the main villain keeping his promises to his subordinates. When has that ever happened?). Twilight and the others manage to get the staff back where the Storm King tries to freeze them all in carbonite but Tempest takes the hit and freezes the Storm King in carbonite with her where he falls off the ledge and shatters (wow, that might just be the most violent death in the series). Twilight uses the staff to restore Tempest, the other princesses, and free everypony else. With the Storm King defeated the friendship festival goes off without a hitch and we get to see a performance from Songbird who is voiced by the Australian song-writer and singer Sia to bring this movie to a close.

Final Thoughts

So that was the MLP Movie and its better than the Emoji movie. No, seriously, the movie is okay overall and that’s kind of the main problem it’s just okay. It doesn’t do anything to stand out from a regular episode in the season. The story isn’t really all that interesting. It’s straightforward and feels like you’re watching an actual episode from the series only with a bigger budget and higher stakes so it honestly doesn’t add anything new to the series. This movie could have easily been used as an arc in the show. The villains are straightforward as well and while they’re not the best villains in the series I will admit they have their moments to display their evilness. Nothing shocking of course, just basic villain stuff. The new characters are alright but really don’t add anything outside of just helping out in the end. They really could have used more screentime so that we could get to know them better. While the screentime between the mane 6 isn’t distributed evenly each one gets their chance on the screen and has a funny line here and there. The one thing I really didn’t like was Twilight snapping at Pinkie in the second act, I mean come on you guys I’ve been through so much together and you’re just gonna snap on her like that? Ridiculous. There was also the staff. While it didn’t bother me as much as Twilight and Pinkie, it wasn’t explained at all and left the door open for lot of plotholes and questions to its creation.

The animation is very good and colorful. It’s a different feel from their 2D animation but I like it. The characters look good and the locations they go to are all creative and hopefully these become reoccurring locations in the show along with possibly the new characters as well. As far as songs go they’re okay. There were 2 songs that I admit I enjoyed, while the other songs were forgettable. The jokes, fight scenes, backstories, and interactions once again feel like something from the show which once again is kind of the major fault of the movie. It really does nothing to separate itself from the show. While Equestia Girls came across as someone’s fanfic come to life the movie added something new to the series and it seemed like it would be a good spinoff of the main series (and sure enough it has become a web series spinoff). This movie on the other hand just felt like the show getting a bigger budget and really didn’t warrant a theatrical release in my opinion. In the end Equestia Girls left more of an impact on me than this movie and the one I’ll remember more among the two.

Final Score

The MLP Movie earns a 6/10. It’s okay, I really have no major complains or problems with the movie, I just feel it would have worked out better as a season finale rather than a theatrical movie. If you’re a fan of the show you’ll like it and get some enjoyment out of it but if you’re like me who doesn’t watch the show but respects it you’ll think it’s okay at best. There are somethings that could have been changed and done better but for what it is, it’s passable. Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next time on Project Nitsuj.

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