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American Women's Club of Hamburg

Ugly Dolls


USA | China | Canada 2019
Opening October 3, 2019

Directed by: Kelly Asbury
Writing credits: Allison, Peck, Robert Rodriquez
Principal actors: Animation, original version voiced by Kelly Clarkson, Pitbull, Nick Jonas, Blake Shelton, Janelle Monae

Ugly DollsA factory produces huge amounts of dolls at great speed. Naturally, production sometimes goes wrong. Perhaps it is missing teeth or has too many eyes. An imperfect doll lands in a special bin at the end of the assembly line, earmarked for Uglyville. Here, they have built an impressive community, where, regardless of their failings, they interact in good sport, as friends, and enjoy life without any hope of ever landing into the arms of a real child. Only pink Moxy, believes that there is another world and decides to take off and explore. She convinces Lucky Bat, Wage, Babo and Ugly Dog to come along and the adventure starts. On the other side of the mountain they discover the Institute for Perfection which contains, naturally, perfect dolls which are practicing the habits they will need when arriving in the real world to live in a nursery. Moxy believes she could compete successfully with these candidates, but Lou, who considers himself perfect and in charge, prevents her admission, saying, “Kids don’t like uglies.”

These Uglydolls were first created in 2001 by David Horvath and his wife Sun-min Kim. They resemble stuffed animals made out of felt more than dolls. The concept led to a video game and then a TV series. Now we have this first film, which emphasizes the topic of  bullying: both origin and elimination. Here, Mandy, a doll from the Institute of Perfection, tries to help them; she, due to having to wear glasses, isn’t so perfect herself. Three perfect dolls visit Uglyville for new experiences and a change of opinion. Naturally, there is a moral to the story, reflected in comments such as “We are great because we are different. Be strong. Be your real self.” The animation is marvelously colorful and bright, supported by 13 songs. Children from about six to 12 will enjoy it, as will their adult accompaniment. (Becky T.)

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