Where I Watched it: Netflix
Audio Description Provided By: International Digital Center
Written By: Dakota Green
I’d be lying if I don’t still find myself coming in contact with films that even with solid audio description end up in the “Oh, I would have loved to see that” category. Kid Cudi’s animated adult romantic trip is one of those. It’s a rare adult story told from a unique perspective, and one we rarely get. Not only is it very much not for children, as the characters have sex, do drugs, and drop a lot of profanity, but it’s a hip hop centric story supported by Kid Cudi’s music.
Not only does he do the music, but he voices the lead character, and for an artist like him with few acting credits to his name, he does a solid job opposite Jessica Williams as two single people living in the same apartment complex in a will they won’t they back and forth. Both are artists, both seem to want things to be uncomplicated, and they have solid chemistry.
All of this reminds me of films like Waking Life, which have aimed at the artistic adult crowd with the rotoscope animation style used later in films like A Scanner Darkly and this year’s Apollo 10 and 1/2.
Sure, we also have the adult animation like Big Mouth aimed at a certain type of humor for a certain crowd. But I can’t think of too many things close to what Enter Galactic tries to achieve, by blending realism, with this trippy artistic throughline that connects the story in a very whimsical manner for what is ultimately a love story.
Cudi manages to get a very deep bench and eclectic one, ranging from Macaulay Culkin to Kenya Barris (who also serves as producer). i do hesitate a bit to call this a masterpiece, only because from my viewpoint, as a listener mostly, I experienced a love story I feel like I’ve been told before. The medium through which it is told is largely lost on it’s blind audience, so despite how it chooses to animate and keep itself fresh, to me it felt like it was competing with just any other romance. And not that that was a bad thing, it just meant that potentially the extra thing that makes this special just can’t be translated to our audience.
It’s something I’ve lamented before, knowing directors with very specific styles, and figuring out how to translate in the viewing experience what it is like to truly watch, for example, a Wes Anderson movie. A director who makes choices that can be seen through all their works, a very specific visual style.
Here, it reminds me that when we veer into all the possibilities that animation offers its visual audience, often we get just the meat of the story. There could be strobing lights, and a distorted visual reality where characters constantly change form, and it’s likely we would not get those notes unless pertinent to the actual plot.
Dakota Green is one of the best writers around, so i have no doubt that whatever she could try and capture, she did. I just still can’t shake this feeling, at least with this project, that perhaps there was something missing, something that could have changed my experience.
Enter galactic is a good film regardless. Even if you watch it not knowing it is animated, it still has undeniable charm, and a sick soundtrack curated by its star and producer. Take the risk.
Final Grade: B+