Eye For Film >> Movies >> One Small Step (2018) Film Review
One Small Step
Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode
If one were to design a world to encourage space exploration, one would give it a moon like ours. Close enough to be reachable, big enough to serve as a staging post - and, for millennia before that, a bright light in the sky calling to us, inspiring us to imagine something beyond our own world. Luna is in love with the Moon from early childhood. She longs to go there. So her cobbler father makes her a special pair of boots with stars on them and climbs into a cardboard box with her so they can imagine it's a spaceship.
Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas' enchanting animated fable follows father and daughter through the years and through one set of footwear after another as she grows up and he grows old and she remains devoted to her dream, even if it's hopeless, to the point that she doesn't notice how much he's doing for her, and he never really seems to mind.Rather that pitting love and ambition against each other, as so many film narratives do, it suggests that the father's devotion makes him a part of his daughter's story is a way that is as meaningful for him as her pursuit of her dream is for her. at the same time as it's praising the dedication and hard work that get individuals to the top, the film accords self-sacrifice the same honour and presents both its protagonists as people making free, positive choices.
Simple yet charming animation, conceived with an eye for detail, rounds out the characters and helps us get to know them intimately even in the absence of spoken dialogue. Speaking instead with music adds to the sense that the film represents a universal dream, and increases its accessibility for very young viewers, who are likely to find it as engaging as adults do. In a year when a lot of the films being considered for awards are very dark, its nomination for an Oscar provides a welcome splash of colour and light. It's a film about what can happen when we refuse to give in to despair, and if that seems hopelessly naive, it's worth remembering that this is a step that's been taken before.Reviewed on: 26 Jan 2019