In a small town on the Italian Riviera, a little sea monster discovers he looks like a human when he gets out of the water. He befriends a human in the village but works to keep his real identity from her.
A surprisingly low-key entry into the Pixar catalogue that seems free of the pressures of trying to build on a billion-dollar franchise, and doesn’t try to explain the meaning of life. Gone is the razor sharp wit we’re used to from the studio, instead Luca is a slight and charming film that feels comfortable in its own skin.
The world they build in the little port town is warm and inviting, the visuals are really subtle and wonderfully executed.
Luca’s refusal to be bold is in and of itself a bold choice. Pixar movies all used to be different but in recent years they’ve all shared a certain tone and feel, in spite of their different subject matters. Luca seems to break away from it all, and just lets its characters live and breath for a while.
A beautiful, unexpected and simple coming of age (and frankly, coming out) story.