Positives: The animation.
Negatives: Feeling that you already watched this movie because it resembles others.
The main character of "Epic" looks like a twin of the main character of "Frozen". Also, one movie deals with cold vs warm and the other deals with decay vs growth. Finally, both movies rely a lot on beautiful nature shots. For these reasons, I felt I should review both together.
"Frozen" was much better than I expected. Frozen reminded me a lot of traditional Disney classics like Snow White, Dumbo or Bambi. Yes there was singing, but the singing was surprisingly traditional without sounding corny and outdated. Unlike in most cartoons that involve singing, in "Frozen" it enhanced the experience rather than being a turn-off.
"Frozen" also had a rather well-developed story. It wasn't a traditional good-vs-evil story where the good were perfect and the bad haven't got a single redeeming quality. It also wasn't yet another generic "we must remain ourselves and fight tradition" story like Mulan, Brave and so many others out there. The characters felt more real than I'm used to in a Disney flick and combined with some humor that actually works, that makes "Frozen" one of the most entertaining animations I've seen in a long time.
"Epic" was an "epic failure" in all of these area. The characters were bland and generic. The story was bland and generic and felt like they mixed "Arthur and the Minimoys", "Antz" and "Ferngully" together, then filtered until nothing interesting was left.
The humor didn't work either. As silly as the talking snowman in "Frozen" may look, he actually did work as a comic relief. His actions were funny, his words were funny and he complemented the heroes of the movie well. In "Epic", a snail and a slug served the very same purpose, only they were annoying as h***. Think Jar Jar Bing annoying and worse.
The only thing that works in "Epic" are its visuals. If I just wanted to look at pretty pictures, both "Frozen" and "Epic" would be equally beautiful. The problem is that a movie is more than pretty pictures. A movie is entertainment and needs to entertain. While "Frozen" was much better than I expected, "Epic" was much worse.
(Full review coming soon)