The first trailer for Laika’s newest animated picture Kubo and the Two Strings is now available. While this first look at the latest stop-motion feature starts off more like a teaser, it quickly becomes apparent that Laika is once again pushing the limits of their filmmaking technology and artistry. We don’t get much story here as the trailer focuses on showing off myriad characters sailing, swimming, and fighting their way across dynamic, colorful backdrops. Don’t get too lost in the trailer’s beauty, though; Kubo and the Two Strings looks to be Laika’s most adventurous and action-packed film to date.
Directed by Travis Knight and scripted by Marc Haimes and Chris Butler, Kubo and the Two Strings boasts the impressive voice cast of Art Parkinson, Matthew McConaughey, Charlize Theron, Rooney Mara, Ralph Fiennes, George Takei, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, and Brenda Vaccaro. Look for Kubo and the Two Strings on August 19, 2016.
Watch the first trailer for Kubo and the Two Strings below:
First of all, I was impressed with the studio’s decision to film scenes on open water, which clearly isn’t actually water due to the nature of stop-motion animation, but their technique of blending practical effects with computer-generated enhancements really brings this scene to life. Secondly, Laika’s previous films Corpse Bride, Coraline, ParaNorman, and The Boxtrolls all had elements of action present in their stories, but Kubo appears to be the first film that is built around the action genre at its core. I was always going to be psyched for a new Laika film, but this first trailer promises that my loyalty will be justly rewarded.
Here’s the official synopsis for Kubo and the Two Strings:
An epic action-adventure from acclaimed animation studio LAIKA. Clever, kindhearted Kubo (voiced by Art Parkinson of “Game of Thrones”) ekes out a humble living, telling fantastical stories to the people of his seaside town. But his relatively quiet existence is shattered when he accidentally summons a mythical spirit from his past which storms down from the heavens to enforce an age-old vendetta. Now on the run, Kubo joins forces with Monkey (Academy Award winner Charlize Theron) and Beetle (Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey), and sets out on a thrilling quest to save his family and solve the mystery of his fallen father, the greatest samurai warrior the world has ever known. With the help of his shamisen – a magical musical instrument – Kubo must battle gods and monsters, including the vengeful Moon King (Academy Award nominee Ralph Fiennes) and the evil twin Sisters (Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara), to unlock the secret of his legacy, reunite his family and his heroic destiny. The all-star cast also includes George Takei, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, and Brenda Vaccaro.