Over the Moon surprised me with its touching yet hopeful treatment of grief. This Netflix offering boasts dazzling images amid the story of Fei Fei (voiced by Cathy Ang), a grieving teenage girl in China, who is suffering a great loss. She loved helping her parents in their bakery and then just her father after the death of her beloved mother. Fei Fei’s favorite goodies are the delicious mooncakes.
But now her dad (voiced by John Cho) wants to marry a widow with a preteen son called Chin (voiced by Robert G. Chiu). This situation intensifies Fei Fei’s sad feelings.
Perhaps Chang’e , the moon goddess, can help her. The movie shows this sorrowful girl’s wild trip to the moon and her interaction with the colorful inhabitants there. She finds out that Chang’e (voiced by Phillipa Soo) rules the roost more like a pop star than a goddess. Chang’e also suffers from the loss of someone she loved. Could this account for her bad behavior? But if Fei Fei brings Chang’e a gift, she promises to help her.
So the quest for the perfect gift begins. Along for the exciting treasure hunt is Gobi (voiced by Ken Jeong), a lovable comic creature, plus Fei Fei’s wannabe stepbrother, and Chang’e’s delightful tiny back-up singers.
On the moon lives a Moon Goddess.
A young girl wants her moon address.
But how to get there on the moon?
Not on bicycle or balloon!
A rocket ship comes into mind.
But little boy should stay behind.
He wants to be brother to her.
And that -- the girl just can’t endure.
Her loss of mom makes this girl sad.
Dad wants to wed again. That’s bad.
The Moon Goddess might help her see
a way to stop this misery.
OVER THE MOON, a musical
with song numbers to please us all.
Animation, so eye catching,
makes thIs fine film well worth watching.
Directed by Glen Keane (his first feature film as director), this amazing animated movie sometimes seems too frantic with all the colorful characters and fast action. But the movie’s lovely tender scenes make up for that. Kudos to the late great Audrey Wells (George of the Jungle, Shall We Dance?) for the imaginative story and to Steven Price (Gravity) for his diverse musical contributions.
Over the Moon combines music, animation, emotion, comedy and downright humanity into an entertaining film for the entire family.
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it, you’ll be among the stars. --- Les Brown
The moon is beautiful only when the mind is seeking beauty and the heart is loving. --- Debasish Mridha
(Released by Neflix and rated “PG” by MPAA.)