“Puss in Boots boasts plenty of action, intrigue and adventure that will thrill both young and old alike as it touches on the age old themes of betrayal, love and friendship.
Puss grows up in an orphanage with (believe it or not) Humpty Dumpty, an egg-shaped creature who is an outcast at the orphanage. Puss protects and defends Humpty Dumpty, and the two become blood brothers-or so it seems.
Humpty is a dreamer, always conjuring up fantastical tales-one of which is his belief in the existence of magic beans, which he hopes to steal from the bandits Jack and Jill. Why? The planted beans will grow a beanstalk that spirals into the clouds-leading to the magic castle and the goose that lays golden eggs.
Puss is determined to steal the beans for himself, but he meets a foil in a mysterious and wily cat who wears a mask, Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek), the greatest thief in all of Old Spain. Puss eventually finds out that Softpaws is female, setting off a rivalry with some surprising and romantic twists.
After Puss saves a woman from the path of a charging bull, the town declares that Puss is a hero and he is presented with boots and a feathered hat. But the town’s adoration turns to scorn when Humpty fools an unwitting Puss into helping him in a bank robbery, which forces the falsely accused Puss to flee his beloved hometown of San Ricardo.
Puss vows to return to San Ricardo to regain his honor and clear his name.
Years later, Puss and Humpty meet up again and Humpty begs for Puss’ forgiveness. Before you can say “meow,” Humpty has enlisted Puss again in searching for the magic beans. What ensues is a chase as Puss, Softpaws and Humpty set out on a journey to steal the beans from renegades Jack and Jill (Billy Bob Thornton and Amy Sedaris).
The three do eventually steal the magic beans, plant them, and climb the bean stalk to the castle in the clouds. Lo and behold! There is the baby goose laying golden eggs all over the place. The three steal the baby goose and return to the town of San Ricardo where they shower the townsfolk with the golden eggs.
The townsfolk rejoice until the humongous mama goose (who is the height of three Empire State Buildings) thunders into town, enraged that her child has been kidnapped. As the mama goose storms through the town, the townspeople flee for their lives.
“Puss in Boots” is an adventuresome romp that will leave audience members in suspense-will the mama goose retrieve her child? Will Puss in Boots clear his name for good? Will the egg repent its evil ways?
The movie, helmed by “Shrek 3” director Chris Miller, features the voices of Zak Galifianakis, Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas, Billy Bob Thornton and Amy Sedaris, was filmed in Tru 3D that literally feels as if the characters are leaping off the screen.
Banderas does a superb job of capturing the spirit of Puss in Boots. With his sultry purr and exotic accent, he is appears to be the perfect choice to portray the dashing feline.
Hayek said that “Puss in Boots” is her first foray into the realm of animation.
“There were no drawings or anything,” said Hayek, who said she loved portraying Kitty Softpaws. “The director explained the action to me and I just did the scenes.”
Hayek gives credit to Banderas, with whom she has worked with in four movies and is a close friend. It is unusual for actors to meet during an animated film, but Hayek and Banderas actually met so that they could devise improvisational scenes with their characters.
“By the time I met Antonio, I had the character. He pushed me to explore improvisation in comedy, it was so much fun,” she said.
Billy Bob Thornton, who portrays “Jack” in the film, said that portraying the voice of the portly character was a challenge.
“My character looks like Henry the Eighth’s mentally challenged brother,” Thornton laughs. “We completely relied on Chris for direction. My only job was to come up with a voice that fit Jack. He’s a big guy, so I tried to make my voice have a little more weight on it.”
Thornton went on the say, “As a kid, you don’t notice it, but fairy tales are actually pretty dark. Hansel and Gretel terrify me.” Referring to the fabled fairy tale duo Jack and Jill who in Puss in Boots turn out to be a husband-wife bandit team that rob and steal, Bob reflected, “Amy and I said something went wrong with Jack and Jill when they went to get a pail of water.”
Galifianakis, who does a superb job of embodying the voice of the conflicted Humpty Dumpty, said that:
“Humpty Dumpty is an emotional, greedy and vindictive individual-but he is trying to have a friendship. Deep down I think he’s an OK guy.”
Filled with plenty of action, comedy and intrigue, “Puss in Boots” will certainly be a treat for the whole family.