Movie Review: Disney’s BIG HERO 6

We just got back from seeing Disney’s BIG HERO 6, and I can easily say: if you’re in the mood for a heartfelt, carefully structured, charming family film with deep roots in the Marvel vein of storytelling, BIG HERO 6 is the movie for you!

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About BIG HERO 6

An action comedy adventure about brilliant robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada, who finds himself in the grips of a criminal plot that threatens to destroy the fast-paced, high-tech city of San Fransokyo. With the help of his closest companion-a robot named Baymax-Hiro joins forces with a reluctant team of first-time crime fighters on a mission to save their city.

I think I was most struck by how deliberately BIG HERO 6 builds the foundation for the characters and story. It makes me wonder if it might be too “slow” for very young kids, even with the many sweet and funny scenes involving Baymax. My 7yo didn’t seem too put off by it, though, and as an adult, I appreciated a family film with some dimension to it.

I like the diversity and personalities of each of the characters, and the family bonds that form. These relationships take equal turns breaking your heart or making you cheer in BIG HERO 6, which means the best thing of all – they are characters you can care about and invest in.

characters of Disney's BIG HERO 6

And when it comes to characters, no one has a bigger profile – quite literally – than Baymax. His actual size makes for some pretty hilarious scenes, and his huge heart might make him the most human of them all. The mannerism and voice work are perfection, and we all left the theater saying “I want a Baymax!”

Hiro and Baymax Disney's BIG HERO 6

Several aspects of Disney’s BIG HERO 6 are straight out of the Marvel handbook: young genius, deceased parents – in this case, compounded by fresh loss, a team coming together, high-tech gadgets, a solid motive for revenge. And, of course, this movie is based on the BIG HERO 6 Marvel Comic itself. It was just nice to see appropriate homage given by Disney Studios (which, of course, also owns Marvel). To see just how much homage they pay to Marvel, make sure to stay for the post-credit scene! (probably one of our favorites we’ve seen)

There is one scene that might make you wonder about the intensity of BIG HERO 6 for your children, and that’s the car chase. We actually watched this entire sequence at New York Comic Con, and I wondered to myself “Will this movie be too scary for my 7yo?” It is pretty heart-pounding, but it’s about as intense as the movie gets. Other scenes with the villain, while fight scenes, aren’t filled with quite as much in-your-face peril, and there’s no supernatural or evil quality to the villain (which, crazy as it might sound, is the kind of villain I like least in animated children’s films). In fact, BIG HERO 6 even allows for a bit of insight – and maybe even some compassion – for the villain near the end.

Simply because of the slower, more deliberate plot, and the depth of some issues explored, I would think children younger than 6 might lose steam watching BIG HERO 6. But other than the intensity of some action scenes, I don’t find any of the content questionable for younger children (how nice to watch a family movie with no potty humor! unless you want to talk about Fred’s commitment to underwear…). I also loved seeing how much weight and discussion were put on using talents and intelligence, and on being a problem solver, as well as our responsibility to care for one another. Though Baymax provides a lot of brawn in BIG HERO 6, this is also a movie that’s big on brains and heart.

  • Kristin Duncan

    I LOVED Big Hero 6. It was a little scary for Jamey, and he is not a
    scaredy cat. I would definitely use caution for anyone under 6.

    • I absolutely agree – I think 6 and older is a good place to start with this movie. And as I read your comment, I could remember one more (shorter than the car chase) scene that concerned me with its intensity. So, yeah, the little, little kids might not be the best fit for this one!