Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken: A Myth-Twisting Animation that Flirts with Depth

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By Black Widow

“Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken” takes a refreshing approach to the portrayal of krakens in the form of computer animation. Unlike typical American studio animations, this film dares to present these mythical sea monsters without turning them into cutesy characters. Directed by Kirk DeMicco and co-helmed by Faryn Pearl, this high-concept animation cleverly blends elements of “Twilight” with a fish-out-of-water comedy. However, beneath the surface, there lies a more sincere movie that teases audiences with its potential depth.

The Unconventional Kraken Concept

In a sea of anthropomorphic creatures, krakens stand out as a unique choice for the film’s focus. The filmmakers challenge the conventional portrayal of krakens by giving them a more human-like appearance and relatable qualities. This departure from the norm adds an intriguing layer to the story, distinguishing it from projects featuring more commonly depicted mythical beings.

A Family’s Struggle to Fit In

"Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken"

The film revolves around Agatha and Peter, a couple who abandoned the ocean to raise their family on land. Despite their physical distinctiveness—cerulean tint, floppy limbs, and invertebrate status—they manage to blend in reasonably well. However, their daughter, Ruby, grapples with her otherness, constantly trying to hide her true identity. The portrayal of the family’s journey to assimilate into human society provides both charm and relatability.

Ruby’s Transformation and Discovery

A few days before prom, Ruby’s attempt to save her crush, Connor, triggers a transformation within her, awakening her inner kraken. This revelation leads her to explore her true identity and introduces her to Grandmamah, voiced by the legendary Jane Fonda. Ruby learns that she is a royal kraken princess, a discovery that makes her hesitant to return to her previous life on land. As her powers grow, Ruby’s focus shifts from school life and relationships to honing her newfound abilities.