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Western Animation / Onward

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Barley: We are going on a grand and glorious quest!
Ian: It's not a quest. It's just a really fast and strange errand.
Barley: It's totally a quest.

Onward is the twenty-second CGI animated feature made by Pixar. It will be directed by Dan Scanlon, (Monsters University) and is set to be released on March 6, 2020. It will be the very first Pixar film to have no involvement whatsoever from company founder John Lasseter.

Set in a world where mythological creatures like elves and dragons evolved into modern suburbia, the film tells the story of elf brothers Ian and Barley Lightfoot, (Tom Holland and Chris Pratt, respectively), who embark on a quest in search of magic that they hope will allow them to spend one day with their father, who died when they were too young to remember him. The film also stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Mrs. Lightfoot, plus Octavia Spencer as Manracore.

Previews: Teaser. Trailer.


Onward contains examples of:

  • Alien Sky: The teaser and the movie poster show a sky with two moons.
  • All Animals Are Dogs: Blazey, the small pet dragon, acts exactly like a dog in the teaser, barking, panting and licking Ian's face.
  • The Alleged Car: Barley's van does not appear to be in good shape. In the trailer, the shifter knob looks to have been replaced with a screwdriver, and the fuel gauge is permanently stuck on "Full."
  • All Trolls Are Different: Two trolls appear in the teaser. They are bulky giants with colorful skin and large, warty noses, acting completely civilized.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: A number of human-like creatures with unusual skin colors are featured in the trailer. The named characters, Ian, Barley and Laura, are blue-skinned elves, and a green goblin and purple and green trolls also appear briefly.
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  • Astonishingly Appropriate Interruption: In the teaser, when Ian takes out the trash and sees unicorns eating out the trash can:
    Barley: I see you've brought sustenance for our adventure!
    Ian: No, it's garbage for the trash can, and—you left the lid off!
  • Bait-and-Switch: The teaser trailer begins with a series of shots that suggest a High Fantasy setting. And then a modern passenger jet flies by.
  • The Fair Folk: In the second trailer, the brothers encounter a motorcycle gang made up of small sprites, who are all riding one motorcycle together, and chase the boys around.
  • Fantastic Fauna Counterpart: There are two scenes in the trailer where a fantasy creature takes the place of a real-life animal. The first shows Blazey, the Lightfoots' pet dragon that acts just like a dog. The second has a pair of unicorns acting like raccoons, feeding from the Lightfoots' trash and hissing at Ian when he chases them away.
  • Fauns and Satyrs: In the trailer, there's a female faun painting a house wall, using her goat legs to leap and reach the high spots.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: The second trailer shows Ian and Barley trying to resurrect their father, but only succeeding in bringing his legs back to life.
  • Hiss Before Fleeing: In the trailer, when Ian chases away the unicorns from the garbage can, one of them lets out a hiss before running away.
  • Large Ham: Barley acts like this in the teaser trailer, melodramatically talking about a "glorious quest" he and his brother are going on.
  • Magic Staff: The boys inherit one from their father, as revealed in the second trailer.
  • Of Corpse He's Alive: A variation — in the second trailer, the brothers are only able to bring their father half back to life... the bottom half. To disguise this, they're seen stuffing a jacket and hat and balancing it atop the disembodied legs to simulate an upper body.
  • Our Centaurs Are Different: In the trailer, one centaur jogs by the house of a troll, saying hi to him.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: The trailer shows the Lightfoots having a small pet dragon named Blazey that acts like a dog.
  • Our Gnomes Are Weirder: In the trailer, one gnome stays put like an ordinary garden decoration until another gnome tells him to get back to mowing the lawn.
  • Our Mermaids Are Different: Mermaids appear in the trailer as conventionally attractive human-like women with long, bright, scaly fish tails, with a group of them swimming in a lake, and one chilling in an inflatable pool in the suburbs.
  • Troll Bridge: Parodied; in the trailer, there is a troll manning a tollbooth for the Under Bridge Transportation Authority, accepting either cash or the answer to a riddle.
  • Unicorn: Two of them appear in the trailer as garbage-eating pests, not unlike raccoons, raiding the Lightfoots' garbage can and then hissing angrily at Ian. They are also winged, and can indeed fly; the trailer shows one flying quite gloriously before showing the modernized world.
  • Urban Fantasy: The teaser shows a modern suburbia inhabited by fairy tale creatures like elves, mermaids, trolls and gnomes.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: The first trailer ends with the words "Cometh soon," while the second trailer has the phrase "The quest beginneth."
    • Barley also briefly dabbles in this in the second trailer:
      Barley: (during Ian's 16th birthday) By the laws of yore, I must dub thee a man today. Kneel before me!


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