Animated Movie ‘Turning Red’

Disney Pixar Studios presents Turning Red, a true story of getting old with a touch of fur.

Setting of the movie:

Although the film was shot in Toronto, Canada, it is interesting that this has little to no effect on the story . the culture presented in the film. The heritage is kept within the community and revived wherever they are. The temple, that main character run by Mei and her family, sees all kinds of visitors and is never less than a symbol of cultural pride for them all.

This is different from a lot of stories about teens detaching from parental interests. At 14, Mai is working hard to maintain her role within the family and excel in her studies. But screwing up her time to create   friction with her friends.

Uncontrolled transformations:

As things get more complicated. Mei begins to experience a variety of uncontrolled transformations into a giant red panda. Many on social media have noted that this is a metaphor for the natural hormonal changes in a woman’s body. which are also directly referenced at some point, which embarrassed Mai. It’s surprising to find such a realistic subject still holds a taboo in this day and age.  kudos to Pixar for getting this right.

While the panda serves as an outright comic reference. It justifies its place without feeling inventive. We soon discover that these furry transformations occur in the women of the Mei family .Each one must choose to keep or banish the panda forever. However, Mai soon realizes that the panda may really be a part of her as she works to balance friends and family life.

climax is fanciful:

Will Mai use her new ability to become a superhero? No, she’s 14… More interested in how she and her friends can afford to buy tickets to see their favorite band “A-Town”. So even with the more fanciful elements in the movie, the emotional rhythms and logic of the characters are very ingrained.

Mai’s journey into work and acceptance of her status, as well as sharing experiences with her mother and family. All combine to deliver a story that is multi-layered, meaningful and emotional. Visually, the animation and directing are clever and memorable, blending plenty of hilarious homages to the visual style of anime and pop culture at the time (2002). Even throwing some funny nods to the Godzilla movies at the end…


I am a huge fan of films that can offer intelligence and perspective. Challenge and entertain across a wide age group. Weaving layers of meanings that remain a mystery to some. Make the film uniquely distinctive to others. This is something Turning Red runs constantly, leaving plenty for people to unload in a second or even third hour. I would urge anyone to try.

Leave a Comment