Bonus: Mune, le guardian de la lune

Alexandre Heboyan’s and Benoit Philippon’s 2014 French computer-animated adventure fantasy film, Mune, le gardien de la lune (Mune: Guardian of the Moon), revolves around Mune, a small, elf-like creature who was chosen to be the next Guardian of the Moon, much to a lot of people’s despair.

The film revolves around nature. That is, like reality, there is a light and dark side of the world that are controlled by the Sun and the Moon, respectively. Wherever the sun is is where it is daytime and wherever the moon is is where it is nighttime. Both entities (the Sun and the Moon) have respective guardians that control these large animals who pull the Sun and the Moon; a peacock pulls the Moon while a boulder-like creature pulls the Sun.

The film, especially since it was meant for children (obviously not me), created a whimsical world, where there were all sorts of faura and fauna and these furry creatures (which kind of reminded me of minions) tried to keep the Moon from stowing away through their webs and get mad (in a cute way) at Mune when he did not play the strings correctly. Furthermore, the chosen Guardian of the Sun, Sohone, was the stereotypical jock who was arrogant and a ladies’ man but, eventually, shows compassion and courage and befriends the main character.

What I like about the film is that it creates a (maybe) new mythology about the creation of the Sun and the Moon. The film was pure fantasy and a bit fairytale-like, but it also has various themes, such as when Mune was able to realize what powers he has and what he can really do, and when Leeyoon, who was supposed to be the Guardian of the Moon, realizes his incompetency and arrogance and shamefully backs off from trying to be the Guardian. It shows how, unlike most films, Leeyoon was innocent and wanted to do what was right, as compared to the stereotypical semi-antagonist who always pushes through his/her original plan of sabotaging the protagonist.

Moreover, I like how the film tries to exhibit how no one really is mean-spirited. It tries to show that there are some factors, which in the film was the serpents, that try to corrupt our minds and, thus, our intentions, into unconsciously wreaking havoc on other people. That was the case for Leeyoon, who was freed from these “serpents” after a while, for Sohone, who managed to break free thanks to Phospho’s (the old Guardian of the Moon’s) intervention and sacrifice, and most of all, Necross, who Mune had eventually freed from the serpents after decades of hatred in his heart and had eventually found peace.

Conclusively, I think although Mune: Guardian of the Moon targets young kids, it would be better suited for older kids, as it follows a complex plot that younger kids would not be able to follow that easily. It also reminded of films such as Kung Fu Panda, where the protagonist had to show that they were worthy of the title because a lot of people were doubting them. The film was also charming in a way, with Mune’s light romance with Glim and his eventual friendship with Sohone, the genuine friendships of the past Guardians, and, fundamentally, the sceneries they get to experience through their adventure.

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