In the ’80s we had the Garbage Pail Kids, and their name lived up to the characters’ descriptions. They were hideous characters and they were meant to be revolting. Today things are a little bit different. The UglyDoll plush toy franchise takes the meaning of “ugly” very differently. In the uglyverse, it means to be unique and special, something to be celebrated. And I think that’s something we all can support in today’s tough times, even if it ends up being in a movie we don’t necessarily want to watch.
And I certainly don’t want to watch UglyDolls, an animated musical by Kelly Asbury (Gnomeo & Juliet, Shrek 2) and produced by Robert Rodriguez. With Kelly Clarkson, Pitbull, Nick Jonas, Janelle Monae, Wang Leehom, and Blake Shelton in the voice cast you can bet they’ll be singing those familiar themes of friendship, diversity, joy, and acceptance. Others contributing to the film include Wanda Sykes, Gabriel Iglesias, and Emma Roberts.
Here is the synopsis: In the adorably different town of Uglyville, weird is celebrated, strange is special and beauty is embraced as more than simply meets the eye. Here, the free-spirited Moxy and her UglyDolls friends live every day in a whirlwind of bliss, letting their freak flags fly in a celebration of life and its endless possibilities, occasionally looking to the sky, where a new UglyDoll will appear and be embraced by the community.
Moxy (Kelly Clarkson) loves her square-peg life in this round-hole town, but her curiosity about all things leads her to wonder if there’s something – anything – on the other side of the mountain which nestles Uglyville. Moxy gathers a group of her closest friends and sets off to find what’s on the other side. They discover another world – Perfection – a town where more conventional dolls are trained in protocols before they graduate and are sent to the “real” world to find the love of a child.
In Perfection, Moxy and her crew are subject to the manipulations of Lou (Nick Jonas), the perfect doll in charge of training recruits. Here, the UglyDolls will confront what it means to be different, struggle with their desire to be loved, and ultimately discover that you don’t have to be perfect to be amazing because who you truly are is what matters most.
UglyDolls opens on May 10th 2019.