Blinky Bill: The Movie is a 2015 Australian computer-animated adventure comedy film based on Dorothy Wall's character Blinky Bill, being the second feature-length adaptation of the books following the 1992 animated film directed by Yoram Gross. The film was primarily produced in Australia by Flying Bark Productions, while also being an international joint-venture with Assemblage Entertainment in India and Telegael in Ireland.
In the town of Greenpatch, Australia, a courageous young koala named Blinky Bill (Ryan Kwanten) tells a story about his father, Mr. Bill (Richard Roxburgh) while embarking on a journey across the wild, and dangerous Australian outback in the hope of finding him.
Blinky's dad had created their home Greenpatch, where every animal could feel safe and live in peace. Blinky has been influenced by the legend of his father, who is on an adventure to the Sea of White Dragons. When Cranklepot the Lizard attempts to dominate Greenpatch and become the ruler, Blinky realises that he must go in search of his father. Throughout his adventure he befriends a girl koala named Nutsy, a lizard named Jacko, and a few other creatures who assist Blinky on his quest. He discovers that being a hero is complicated and requires teamwork.
Why It Rocks
- It surprisingly remains faithful to the source-material, with even some nods to the 1992 adaptation and the television series that followed it.
- Despite some incorrect casting choices, the cast did a really good job with the voice acting, including Ryan Kwanten (Home and Away), Rufus Sewell (Dangerous Beauty), Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense), David Wenham (The Lord of the Rings film trilogy), Deborah Mailman (The Secret Life of Us), Richard Roxburgh (Moulin Rouge!), Robin McLeavy (48 Shades), Barry Otto (Strictly Ballroom) and Barry Humphries (The Hobbit trilogy).
- Though very standard, the animation is pretty decent.
- Brilliant music score by Dale Cornelius.
- Some of the jokes can be funny.
- The film explores a plot point that was never really explored often in previous incarnations of the character; why his father is absent.
- Decently-developed characters, with Nutsy gaining more character development than in the original 1992 movie.
- Is much better than a previous computer-animated movie set in Australia titled Koala Kid (also titled The Outback or Outback).
- It spawned a decent (though lacking in continuity) television series on 7two and ABC ME.
- The plot and writing can get very cliched most of the time.
- Ryan Kwanten and Robin MacLeavy, though they did a brilliant job, aren't the best casting choices for Blinky Bill and Nutsy, as their voices make them sound much older than they're supposed to.
- While mayor Crankelpot is not that bad of a villian, Sir Claude is kinda pointless.
- Jacko can get annoying.
- A lot of the jokes are bland.
- While decent, the animation doesn't look well polished, though it's better than Assemblage Entertainment's other works (like Norm of the North and Arctic Dogs).
Blinky Bill: The Movie received mostly positive reviews from critics but divided audiences and fans of the books. On Rotten Tomatoes the film received generally positive reviews, earning a 73% approval rating, based on reviews from 11 critics. The book Historical Dictionary of Australian and New Zealand Cinema interpreted the Rotten Tomatoes audience score of 43%, taking to imply that audiences and fans of the original book and the animated series had negative reactions to the film.
- The film was the final film involving Polish-Australian animation director Yoram Gross (the founder of Flying Bark Productions as Yoram Gross Film Studio) following his death a month before it's release. He and his spouse Sandra given special thanks credit.
- It is the second animated film to be scored by Dale Cornelius after Mary & Max.