I’d almost forgotten about Luck, Peggy Holmes’ animated film now on Apple TV+.
Fortunately, I am lucky to have been able to see it. Luck is a wonderfully rich, animated film that exudes confidence in character and story, the likes of which I haven’t seen from a movie of its caliber in a while.
The story is centered around Sam Greenfield, voiced by Easter Sunday’s Eva Noblezada, which is also in theaters this weekend. Sam is an orphan on the verge of her 18th birthday. Sad though true, some kids age out of the adoption system. Sam attributes it to her bad luck, which we see evidence of in scenes from the early part of the film.
Then, Bob (Simon Pegg), the Scottish black cat, comes into her life with a lucky penny. Bob should be the definition of bad luck and proves anything but. Their initial meeting was cute, then awkward, but as they learn to work together and appreciate the qualities each brings to the table, they begin to relax as they undertake a mission in the world of good luck and bad luck.
Luck is as much about the art of discovering good luck and bad luck as it is a production that almost didn’t happen. Holmes’ direction is on point, and Kiel Murray’s script (based on a story from Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger, and Murray) portrays luck as something in your mind. The real-world consequences of actions are just as critical as the film lays out. John Debney’s score is bright and airy, ominous when it needs to be; I was giddy by the end of the film.
The voice cast is also outstanding; from Jane Fonda’s Babe the Dragon to Whoopi Goldberg’s “The Captain,” each character has a place and function in the world the film inhabits. Flula Borg’s Jeff is incredibly endearing, as is John Ratzenberger’s Rootie, and Colin O’Donoghue as Gerry impresses. Lil Rel Howery has a more minor role but is no less critical a character than the rest.
I talked about Luck‘s luck in getting the production off the ground a moment ago. The film was initially slated at Paramount, which had an agreement with Skydance and formed a partnership with Ilion Animation. During the film’s development, Skydance hired John Lasseter, who produced the film, which required changes in talent and studios. I am pleased to say that Lasseter, who I think delivered some of the best films Pixar has had to date, lent his presence in an excellent way to this film. He might be the definition of the good luck-bad luck world featured in the movie, but he brought nothing but goodwill to the final product.
Luck is ultimately about the characters. It is also our role in each other’s lives; the luck we bring is only as valuable as how we feel about ourselves. It reminds us that sometimes we try too hard, and in doing so, we unintentionally drop a mirror and walk under a ladder over a broken mirror. Now, all I need to do is find a black cat. “Bob?!” All joking aside, our best intentions are ultimately not beneficial if there’s little to no meaning behind them.
Luck is now streaming on Apple TV+.