claira curtis’s review published on Letterboxd:
The way I ugly sobbed when Angelina Jolie the elephant died(!!!!!!) was ridiculous given this is a children’s movie with computer generated animals... But here we are.
The One and Only Ivan is fine. It is neither complex or particularly engaging on a major scale. However, I don’t think that was ever the film’s intention. In the space of children focused film, I think this does its job very well. The jokes are simple and easy to understand, the plot has a very easy rise and fall, the characters are very clearly defined and don’t deviate much at all, the “villain” isn’t as villainous as he could be, and the film always feels light enough for kids to process, even in its most emotional moments.
It’s just average! I am giving it a tiny little extra boost because this gave Brooklynn Paige a new job, features Danny Devito and Sam Rockwell, and has (fake) elephants.