Ever wonder where luck comes from? That’s the tagline of LUCK (Peggy Holmes), a computer animated film, and the latest Apple TV+ original with Skydance animation. LUCK was released to the streaming platform on August 5th, and for a “lucky” few, select theatres around the US.
LUCK is a world where coincidental fortune, both the good and bad kind, is real. The production of luck is managed by fantasy creatures in a majestic floating city: the Land of Luck. A combination of luck mixers, and handcrafted clover leaves, send the luck to people around the world. The city has a futuristic appearance, some inventive ways to get around, and is one of many great visuals. People are not allowed inside the city, yet one finds a way.
The story follows Sam Greenfield (Eva Noblezada). It’s at a foster house that she is introduced. She’s recently turned 18, never having been adopted by a family, she now needs to move out due to her age, a process called ageing-out. It’s another sad event in a life of bad luck. She has a strong desire to help foster kids find a family, particularly Hazel (Adelynn Spoon), a young girl that’s portrayed like an adopted sister. Her efforts to help Hazel is a constant companion to the main story.
After a disastrous first day on her own, of which everything that could go wrong seemed to, she encounters a black cat (Simon Pegg). The cat, named Bob, is from the Land of Luck. It’s through this encounter that she finds a real lucky penny. Her life immediately improves, the clumsy accidents stop and everything goes her way. She decides to give the magical treasure to Hazel, but tragically flushes it down a toilet. She discovers that Bob can talk, and follows him to the Land of Luck.
The Land is ruled by Babe the dragon (Jane Fonda), and the daily tasks are supervised by the Leprechaun captain (Whoopi Goldberg). The assignments, corporate-like structure, and supply needs can seem a little convoluted. The degree to which the laws and engineering function was surprisingly complex, although impressive and fascinating, it could be needlessly overwhelming for some.
The movie is a visual feast. The computer animation is a great medium to realise the fantasy settings. The people did tend to look very polished, there aren’t actually a lot of people, but it was a look similar to a portrait that’s unrealistically perfect. A lot of background details looked almost photo-real by contrast. This movie is bright and colourful.
There are some scenes that reveal how bad luck is made. The scenes are initially gloomy, and there is mention of the monsters that make it work, but not even bad luck can take away the lighthearted atmosphere. The ultimate message is that bad luck should be seen as a challenge to overcome, and can lead to good things.
Prominently a children’s story, but not uninteresting for an adult, LUCK checks all the boxes a parent could want. A lot happens in this story, and one has to think back on how much Sam and Bob have endured. The story can be slightly hampered by complex magical rules and contraptions, but it all works to build a surprisingly fleshed-out world. It’s a fun way to occupy a couple hours, features some well known voice actors, and should hold the attention of viewers of all ages.
LUCK is now streaming on Apple TV+.