3/10 When a movie is advertised as “from the imagination of Tim Burton,” you tend to go into it expecting a real blue-blooded Tim Burton passion project, one that he really took ownership of and fought hard to get the property rights and push past the finish line.
But that’s not Dumbo. Walking out of the movie, it’s difficult to figure out who was ever passionate about this project.
In 1919, circus horseman Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell) returns from World War I one arm the lesser to find his old troupe in shambles, his wife months-dead of influenza and his two children rudderless. Ringmaster Max Medici (Danny DeVito) hires Farrier back to take care of the circus’ new pregnant elephant, who soon gives birth to Baby Dumbo (Edd Osmond in the motion capture suit). Dumbo is immediately noticed for his ears, which dwarf the rest of his body. Farrier’s daughter, Milly (Nico Parker), soon discovers that he can use these ears as wings and fly.
The flying baby attracts attention from entertainment entrepreneur V.A. Vandevere (Michael Keaton), who buys out the circus and whisks off all the important characters to Dreamland, where they perform with trapeze artist Colette Marchant (Eva Green).