Deep Sea


Disney have established themselves as the leading global brand in the world of animation over the years, which has only been solidified with them buying Pixar.

That doesn’t mean that other animated features aren’t being made around the world, they just might get less of a look in, especially when their films cost less than many Disney films’ marketing budgets.

And then you have a country like China that has an impressive film industry, that’s only second to the US as being the most commercially successful in the world, and that’s based mainly on its domestic market.

And even though you would think that animated features would be easy to market globally, considering you have the ability to dub into foreign markets, not many animated Chinese films get a theatrical release on the global stage, which is a shame if this truly impressive title is anything to go by.

boom reviews Deep Sea
When the latest Taylor Swift album dropped, everyone wanted to hear it.

Going on a cruise with her dad, step-mum and baby step-brother is Shenxiu (Wang Tingwen). It should be a fun time, but she’s struggling with her parents divorcing and her mother leaving her.

During a storm she falls overboard, where she is confronted by a creature known as a Hyjinx, which just so happens to be humming a song her mother used to sing. Thinking that it might know where her mother is, she follows it, leading her to the Deep Sea restaurant, a ship captained by Nanhe (Su Xin), who also creates the gourmet dishes for the unusual crew and passengers on board.

Although he doesn’t trust her at first, he then recognises that she could be good for business, as he strives to get his ranking up to five stars. So he promises her that he will help find her mum, if she helps with the restaurant, which Shenxiu accepts.

But their journey is a difficult one, with passengers who are hard to please, and bad weather threatening to put a real dent in both their plans.

boom reviews Deep Sea
Erm, I told you it was gonna get lively.

The Chinese animated film scene is thriving at the moment, not that any other country would notice. This particular one was a huge hit domestically, already holding the ninth spot in the list of the highest-grossing animated films in China ever, and it’s easy to see why.

The standard of animation in this film is exceptional, easily on par – if not surpassing – much of what Disney, Pixar etc are currently achieving. It uses a vivid palette of colours that produce some outstanding seascapes that may well leave you breathless. And its level of detail is simply sublime.

It’s made all the more incredible when you consider its budget of around only $30 million dollars, compared to that of nearly $200 for Disney’s recent Wish.

Its story also has an unexpected emotional edge to it, with young Shenxiu going on quite the journey – literally and emotionally. It’s a little dark too, that may not suite younger audiences, but overall it reaches a nice balance in storytelling.

This is proof that other markets can compete with the likes of Disney, with the ability to create visuals unlike anything else we’ve ever seen, which can only be a good thing for animation as a whole.

If you’re looking for a stunning looking adventure, with a big heart, Deep Sea will definitely make a splash.

we give this four out of five