If you were keen enough to get to the cinema early enough before The Good Dinosaur, one of the worst Pixar feature films thus far, you’ll have been treated to Sanjay’s Super Team, one of the worst Pixar short films thus far.
The story, based on the true memories of director Sanjay Patel, revolves around him as a young child and the conflict between him wanting to enjoy a superhero TV show and his father wanting him to join him in prayer. Frustrated when his father turns the TV off and forces him to pray, Sanjay uses his time of reflection to daydream into a strange world where his Hindu gods are more like superheroes.
The cel-shading technique used in the daydream sequences is a bit of a let down and feels like a quick solution, despite the best efforts to make it look as colourful as possible. I couldn’t help but imagine how good it would have looked with more attention to detail.
This is a film about a child having doubts over his beliefs and a clash of cultures. Whilst many won’t understand the precise religious and cultural aspects at play, most will appreciate the story from the position of a child not wishing to have to follow in the footsteps of the parents. In principal I don’t agree with using religion as a basis of children’s entertainment, but it works well in this case to create a story for the older audience members.
Unfortunately, the overall result is a bit bland. There was no dialogue, the brilliantly coloured dream sequence lacked any real wow factors and it didn’t move fast enough to make use of the lengthy running time for a short film. The children in the audience voted with their restlessness and disinterest.
In this sense, it was the perfect warm up for the main feature.